Thursday, August 31, 2017

Lucky Ducklings

Title:  Lucky Ducklings
Author:  Eva Moore
Illustrator: Nancy Carpenter
Publisher: Orchard Books,  © 2012
ISBN:  978-0-439-44861-1
Grade Level:  PreK-2
Book Review:  Lucky Ducklings, a true rescue story, is about a mama duck and her five baby ducklings. As the ducklings follow their mama around town, one duckling falls through a storm grate. Thanks to an attentive passerby and a dedicated crew of fire fighters the duckling is rescued.  Mama and babies continue on their way. A well written story, with beautiful illustrations, and a timeless theme make a picture book that could certainly become a classic.
Systems Thinking Connections:
Habits: This story easily lends itself to a discussion of Mama Duck's point of view and thus the Habit changes perspective to increase understanding.  Children can relate to being separated from a parent. The fears of both the mama and her ducklings draw children into the story and create opportunities for conversation.
Tools: A great book for introducing young readers to behavior-over-time graphs.  I was reminded of this story as the start of the school year has prompted primary teachers to ask for recommendations of books that make introducing this tool accessible to young learners.  Lucky Ducklings is such a story. The preschool teacher who created the graph shown here shares that her students had quite a conversation about when to make the line go up, showing that the mother duck was worried.  Some students wanted to indicate the change when the duck fell through the grate.  Other students argued, quite convincingly, that the change for mother duck, did not come until she was aware her duckling had fallen.  This conversation illustrates the power of a visual systems thinking tool to promote deep thinking and create the conditions for children to construct meaning.