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Summary: Miss Spider wants her insect friends to come over for tea, but each one turns down her invitation for fear she'll eat them. When Miss Spider comes to the aid of a wet moth, word spreads of her good nature, and their perspective changes. This is a creative story for sharing the idea that it is neither polite or nice to judge others…because sometimes you're wrong.
Type of Reading: any time
Recommended Age: read together: 1 to 6; read yourself: 5 to 8
Interest Level: 2 to 8
Age of Child: Started reading at 2 years, and we're still reading at nearly 6 years old.
Young Reader Reaction: After a few readings, "Tea Party" became part of the nap/evening story time. S/He particularly likes the rhyme, and counting, pointing to and imitating the insects.
Adult Reader Reaction: A delightful, well-paced story. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in reading the story that we forget to stop with the pages to work on our counting.
Pros: The story weaves a delightful tale with a counting book. The rhyming cadence is smooth and the illustrations are FABULOUS.
Cons: You've got to remember to stop reading (or just look at the pictures) if you want to focus on counting.
Borrow or Buy: Buy. The story is great and the learning opportunities are nearly endless.
Educational Themes: There's a lot to learn from this book: different insects and their habits, counting and numbers, different feelings (sadness, fear, etc), what happens when you stereotype or judge others, empathy and caring.
Literary Categories: Fiction - animal stories, series book, picture book
Date(s) Reviewed: December 2003, July 2006
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