Balancing Act

Balancing Act

by Ellen Stoll Walsh
     
 

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Two mice make a teeter-totter. They're balancing just fine, but then along comes a frog. Can they make room for one more friend on their teeter-totter? What about two? What about more? But then a big bird comes along and wants to play too. Better watch out!See more details below

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Overview

Two mice make a teeter-totter. They're balancing just fine, but then along comes a frog. Can they make room for one more friend on their teeter-totter? What about two? What about more? But then a big bird comes along and wants to play too. Better watch out!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
With characteristic simplicity and charm, Stoll (Mouse Shapes) introduces two mice who fashion a teeter-totter by balancing a tree branch on a rock. Poised on each end--and playfully standing on one foot--the friends are in perfect equilibrium (“Ta-da!”), until a salamander climbs on. Another salamander on the opposite end solves the problem: “Perfect. Balance again.” But the scenario repeats as a pair of frogs leap onto the branch; a large speckled bird then flies in and dramatically upsets everything once again. “Whoops! That’s not going to work!” reads the text as the bird comically squashes several of the players. Thinking fast, the smaller creatures reassemble on the other side of the branch, offsetting the weight of the bird. When “too many balancers” snap the seesaw in two, the others wander off, but the mice rebuild and begin teeter-tottering all over again. Walsh’s familiar cut-paper critters pop from the white background. Even the minimalist text of this cumulative tale often shifts in and out of balance with the action while sending an upbeat message about ingenuity and cooperation. Ages 2–6. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
"Reminiscent of Leo Lionni...this is just the right size for small hands and for sharing one-on-one and also offers an opportunity to talk about the different elements of the story, including cooperation, creativity, and sharing as well as basic physics and math."—Booklist

"This deceptively simple and creative book is loaded with fun...Readers might be fooled into thinking this is just a concept book, but Walsh gives them so much more...This book is full of wonder."—School Library Journal

"With consummate skill, Walsh tells a taunt and dynamic story while introducing some basic physical science to preschoolers...an impressive balance of composition, color, and narrative content; the spreads alternate between displays of potential energy and kinetic energy. A lively yet minimal text supports the story beautifully; there's not a word out of place."—The Horn Book Magazine

"The textures and bright colors in the author's cut-paper illustrations pop off the pages...making it easy for young readers to focus on the mathematical concept. Tips the scales in a subject area surprisingly lacking."—Kirkus Reviews

School Library Journal
PreS-K—This deceptively simple and creative book is loaded with fun. Two adorable mice create a teeter-totter using a stick balanced on a rock. A salamander joins one side, creating an imbalance, but then another one of equal weight joins the other mouse, and all is in order—until it happens again with a frog and a bird. Readers might be fooled into thinking that this is just a concept book, but Walsh gives them so much more, including a twist in the ending. Observant children will want to converse about animal and color identification, as well as why the actions and reactions of the animals are creating balances/imbalances on the teeter-totter. The delightful illustrations were done using cut-paper collage and then splattered with acrylic paints. A rock at the middle of the teeter-totter is cleverly placed in the gutter, creating eye-catching spreads with lots of white space and spare text. This book is full of wonder and can be used at storytime or one-on-one.—Anne Beier, Hendrick Hudson Free Library, Montrose, NY
Kirkus Reviews
Walsh's latest finds her trademark mice exploring the mathematical concept of balance. With a stick and a rock, two mice make a teeter-totter and enjoy balancing...until a salamander wants to play and makes the weights uneven. Luckily, another joins him, and the teeter-totter is even again, a mouse and a salamander on each end. This pattern repeats with a pair of frogs. But then a single, large bird arrives, sending a few of the balancers catapulting into the air. The seven are able to achieve a tentative balance once again by stacking all the animals on one side and the bird on the other. But the precarious stack can't last, and everyone hops, crawls or flies away to do something else...all but the mice, who balance once again. Fans will certainly recognize old friends in the mice, salamanders and frogs from previous outings. A white background makes the textures and bright colors in the author's cut-paper illustrations pop off the pages as well as making it easy for young readers to focus on the mathematical concept. Tips the scales in a subject area surprisingly lacking. (Picture book. 2-5)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781442407572
Publisher:
Beach Lane Books
Publication date:
09/21/2010
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
498,263
Product dimensions:
8.80(w) x 7.40(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
AD110L (what's this?)
Age Range:
2 - 5 Years

Meet the Author

Ellen Stoll Walsh has written and illustrated numerous beloved books for children, including Balancing Act and the bestselling modern classics Mouse Paint and Mouse Count. She lives in upstate New York.

Ellen Stoll Walsh has written and illustrated numerous beloved books for children, including Balancing Act and the bestselling modern classics Mouse Paint and Mouse Count. She lives in upstate New York.

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