Dawdle Duckling

Overview

Dawdle Duckling won't follow dutifully behind Mama Duck like his three siblings do. He's too busy preening and playing, splashing and spinning, dunking and dipping . . . and always, always dreaming. But he's in for a surprise: There's a crocodile waiting for a duckling lunch to swim by. When Mama quacks a warning, suddenly Dawdle Duckling isn't such a dawdler after all!

A cheerful, reassuring tale of youthful ...

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Overview

Dawdle Duckling won't follow dutifully behind Mama Duck like his three siblings do. He's too busy preening and playing, splashing and spinning, dunking and dipping . . . and always, always dreaming. But he's in for a surprise: There's a crocodile waiting for a duckling lunch to swim by. When Mama quacks a warning, suddenly Dawdle Duckling isn't such a dawdler after all!

A cheerful, reassuring tale of youthful rebellion and parental protection-perfect for Easter, Mother's Day, and every day.

Illustrated by Margaret Spengler.

Mama Duck tries to keep Dawdle Duckling together with his siblings, but he wants to dawdle and dream, preen and play, splash and spin.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
On a beautiful sunny day, a downy little fellow thinks he has better things to do than keep pace with Mama Duck and his siblings. "Spengler's pastels radiate good cheer and possess a wonderful sense of volume and depth," wrote PW. Ages 3-up. (Jan.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Here we have a sweet little duckling who does not believe in listening to his mother! Dawdle Duck refuses to catch up to his siblings and mother as he dawdles and dreams, preens and plays, splashes and spins in this cumulative tale. Brightly colored illustrations in pastels cover double-page spreads. The dapper ducklings are shown in jaunty straw hats, while Mother Duck has a straw hat that is tied beneath her chin. Our hero's hat is not in perfect condition, however, so we know that the duckling has seen mischief before and we can be sure he will again! Spengler (Storm is Coming!) shows close-ups of the marsh and its other inhabitants: fish, frogs, butterflies and turtles. But it is the crocodile that appears at the end of the book that finally induces the duckling to catch up! This bright-and-cheery tale with a gently handed moral will be great at story times! 2003, Dial Books for Young Readers,
— Candace Deisley
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-Poetic language and lush pastel artwork portray the antics of an endearing youngster who would rather daydream, play, and explore than tow the line like his siblings. As Mama Duck swims along with her three ducklings close behind, she continually urges her fourth child to catch up, but he is too busy having fun. Only when danger looms in the form of a predator does Dawdle Duckling pay attention to his mother's words. Heeding her warning, he makes a dramatic leap into the air and lands safely on her back. Buzzeo mixes a comfortingly repetitive text with fresh and evocative imagery. Her vivid language brings the landscape to life, as the birds move "Up the cove/toward the big rock rising" or "Along the shore/to the green grass sprouting." Each time the youngster refuses to obey his mother, a new phrase describing his actions is added, culminating in a duck who "dawdles and dreams,/preens and plays,/splashes and spins,/dunks and dips," and finally "looks- and leaps!" With their soft edges and brilliant colors, Spengler's paintings have a dreamy quality that matches the text's even tempo. Scenes of Mama Duck with her three matching offspring in a neat row contrast with close-ups of Dawdle Duckling zigzagging through lily pads, swimming on his back, and enjoying an underwater encounter with a turtle. Pair this picture book with George Shannon's Tippy-Toe Chick, Go! (Greenwillow, 2003), a tale of another free-spirited bird who likes to stop and smell the roses.-Joy Fleishhacker, formerly at School Library Journal Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In her sophomore outing, Buzzeo (The Sea Chest, p. 949) introduces a duckling that likes to do his own thing: "Across the bay / on the blue waves rolling, / one Mama Duck / paddles and quacks. / One, two, three ducklings / swim behind / But the fourth little duckling / dawdles and dreams." In a full-bleed illustration rendered in pastels, Spengler’s (Storm Is Coming, 2001, etc.) duckling stops to greet a fish just below the surface. The duckling is charmingly plump and cheerful and Spengler’s palette, full of deep, celestial blues and lemon yellow is deliciously lush. "No! Quack! Quack! / I won’t catch up," he says in response to his mother’s call. Youngsters will enjoy predicting what’s next and chanting the duckling’s defiant refrain as the back and forth repeats throughout. In the end, the duckling follows his mother’s directions for the first time, just in time to save himself from the toothsome creature lurking at water’s edge, making Buzzeo’s gentle lesson just right for the preschool set. (Picture book. 2-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803727311
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 1/27/2003
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 3 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.00 (w) x 20.00 (h) x 0.01 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 18, 2010

    Buy this only if you want to teach your children to be disrespectful.

    The story has a rythm of Mamma calling the duckling "Quack, Catch up!" and the duckling responds "No! I won't catch up!". Five or six times this happens! SERIOUSLY!??? Is this the behavior you want your children to emulate????? I knew I didn't like it, but one day when I heard my 4 year old respond "No! I won't ___" to what I had just asked her to do, that was the tipping point and this book went in the recycling bin--not even donated, so as not to add to the generation of children already disrespectful to their parents/teachers. Perhaps if there had been some negative cosequence--such as the duckling had actually appeared FRIGHTENED when the alligator appeared--the story would have redeeming value. As it is, I highly recommend NOT purchasing this book--or even checking it out from a library.

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