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BUR BUR THROWS OUT THE FIRST PITCH

Author: JoAnne Pastel & Kaki Fitzsimmons

Illustrator: Lindsay VanDeWeghe

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Publisher: Interface Publishing,

Material: hard cover

Summary: Bur Bur is a young boy who has the privilege of throwing out the first pitch at a professional baseball game. His parents helped him prepare for the event by practicing throwing, and Bur Bur is proud of his accomplishment. This is a story filled with parental guidence, encouragement, and love.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, playtime reading, read aloud book, learning to read

Recommended Age: read together: 4 to 8; read yourself: 6 to 9

Interest Level: 4 to 8

Age of Child: Started reading with 3-year-old boy.

Young Reader Reaction: My son loves balls, so this book was the favorite in the stack. It was always the first book he selected, the first one read, and the one requested without prompting. "Do you want to read a book when we get home?" "Can we read Bur Bur?" He recogined the shapes of the baseball field and pointed out emotions ("the bear is happy").

Adult Reader Reaction: I loved all the positive encouragement that Bur Bur's parents gave him. Even though their encouragement and praise were part of the story, the words were coming out of my mouth and going into my son's ears - I can't help but think they had an impact on his self-esteem! I was surprised that he liked it as much as he did.

Pros: This is a positive story about success, with several moral lessons. It engages a toddler/preschooler without being overwhelming.

Cons: The illustrations are clear but a little sloppy/awkward. The story more than makes up for this!

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. I really recommend borrowing this book from the library, it is excellent.

If You Liked This Book, Try:

Educational Themes: My son learned that practice is rewarded with success, and that we must have patience to wait our turn. The concept of throwing v. catching, as well as illustrations that offer the chance to talk about equipment and the field.

Notes: AWARDS: iParenting Media Award winner category “Greatest Products 2007”; 2008 Silver Recipient: Illustrated Series, Moms Choice Awards

Literary Categories: Fiction - picture book, sports, emotions

Date(s) Reviewed: March 2008

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