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The Children's Bookshelf: Let's Go! - May 14, 2023

Let’s Go! written and illustrated by Michael Emberley is his latest addition to the I Like to Read Comics series for children who find reading difficult or are just not interested in reading. The storyline is full of action and the pictures are full of creative fun.

Emberley’s I Did It! revolved around a busy little character who was trying to learn how to ride a bike and earned the author the Geisel Award. The characters in Let’s Go! include the same group of friends, namely, elephant, racoon, robot, penguin, alligator, and the busy little character.

A paper airplane from alligator flies out of the sky and carries an invitation to a party for the friends. They want to go but how to get there is a problem. The active little character, with paper and scissors in hand, shows the others how to draw, cut out and put together paper cars. Then they all jump in their cars and say, “Let’s Go!” When it begins to snow, they cut out sleds and skiis and keep right on going. And, when they face a river, they draw paper boats including sailboats, a rowboat and a submarine and keep on going.

The possibility of being able to draw whatever item you need for the storyline anchors the story in creative alternatives, possibilites and fun. Once the party seekers arrive at alligator’s house, they must draw a door on which to knock so alligator can open it and let them in. The illustration of the party-makers dancing, playing instruments, and making merry music is as joyous as they come.

Let’s Go! written and illustrated by Michael Emberley will capture the interest of children 4-7 years of age who are on the road to reading!

The Children’s Bookshelf is a production of WCMU. Links to the podcast and the Activity Questions can be found at Children’s Bookshelf dot org.

Activity Questions for Let’s Go!

Take another look at the final glorious illustration. Can you find an accordion, an oboe, drums, and a saxophone? With the help of your parents or teachers you will be able to hear the sound that each of these instruments make by going online. Stage a concert by assigning each of the four instruments to one of your family-members. Then, play together by each of you making the sounds of your instrument to the melody from IF YOU’RE HAPPY AND YOU KNOW IT SING OUT LOUD. (a take-off from “If You’re Happy and You Know It Clap Your Hands”). Have fun!

Each of the six characters in this book-----racoon, elephant, robot, penguin, alligator, and the little creature are without a formal name. Give each of them a name that you think captures their personality.

Would you like to be part of this book? Just for fun draw a picture of what new animal or creature you would like to be. Give yourself a name.

Sue Ann Martin is professor emerita of Communication and Dramatic Arts and the founding and past Dean of the College of Communication and Fine Arts at Central Michigan University, Mt. Pleasant, Michigan. She first became interested in children’s literature when she wrote her PhD thesis on the oral characteristics of the Caldecott Award-winning children’s books. Her PhD is in Speech and Interpretation with a cognate in Early Childhood Education. She went on to review children’s books for the Detroit Free Press, write three popular resource books for teachers regarding children’s books and the creative process. She also reviewed newly-published books for Arts Almanac specials on WCMU Public Radio. Her 2002 children’s books special for WCMU won a Merit Award in Special Interest Programming from the Michigan Association of Broadcasters.