Elmer

( 13 )

Overview

Elmer the elephant, a colorful character because of his patchwork hide and sense of humor, tries to blend in with the herd, but soon realizes that he's happiest just being himself. "McKee's gentle humor and love of irony are in full force in this celebration of individuality and laughter."—Publisher's Weekly.

Author Biography:

David McKee grew up in Devon, England. Later, while a student at Plymouth Art College, he began selling his cartoon ...

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Overview

Elmer the elephant, a colorful character because of his patchwork hide and sense of humor, tries to blend in with the herd, but soon realizes that he's happiest just being himself. "McKee's gentle humor and love of irony are in full force in this celebration of individuality and laughter."—Publisher's Weekly.

Author Biography:

David McKee grew up in Devon, England. Later, while a student at Plymouth Art College, he began selling his cartoon drawings to newspapers. Since 1964 he has published a number of successful books for children, including the King Rollo stories, which he helped animate for British television. His first book for Lothrop was Snow Woman, of which Publishers Weekly said, "It is McKee's superb humor—conveyed almost solely in the illustrations...that wins the day." Of his second Lothrop book, Who's a Clever Baby, Publishers Weekly had this to say: "Grandma's alliterative frenzies are fascinating and readers will find Baby's manipulative stubbornness vastly amusing."

Mr. McKee enjoys traveling and doing books that "leave things unsaid."

All the elephants of the jungle were gray except Elmer, who was a patchwork of brilliant colors until the day he got tired of being different and making the other elephants laugh.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Elmer the elephant is a colorful character. His heady optimism and unbridled sense of humor keep the entire community in a cheery mood. And Elmer's unusual multicolored checkerboard hide is the wonder of all the other elephants, who are characteristically gray. In spite of his sunny disposition, Elmer begins to feel conspicuous. He starts to believe the others are laughing at him because of his crazy patchwork coat. When Elmer discovers a bush in the jungle with elephant-colored berries, he shakes the bush and rolls in a berry mash until he is as gray as the others. Now no one seems to notice him; for a time he enjoys his anonymity, but after a while he begins to realize just how quiet and dull things are when he's not around. Finally the practical joker in Elmer emerges, and he soon has the whole gang laughing again. McKee's gentle humor and love of irony are in full force in this celebration of individuality and laughter. Well-designed spreads are washed with stunning color and the use of textured, painted and airbrushed surfaces contributes to the powerful visual impression. Ages 4-7. (Sept.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780862642082
  • Publisher: Random House UK
  • Publication date: 5/4/1989
  • Product dimensions: 8.06 (w) x 9.44 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Meet the Author

David McKee grew up in Devon, England. Later, while a student at Plymouth Art College, he began selling his cartoon drawings to newspapers. Since 1964 he has published a number of successful books for children, including the King Rollo stories, which he helped animate for British television. His first book for Lothrop was Snow Woman, of which Publishers Weekly said, "It is McKee's superb humor—conveyed almost solely in the illustrations...that wins the day." Of his second Lothrop book, Who's a Clever Baby, Publishers Weekly had this to say: "Grandma's alliterative frenzies are fascinating and readers will find Baby's manipulative stubbornness vastly amusing."

Mr. McKee enjoys traveling and doing books that "leave things unsaid."

David McKee grew up in Devon, England. Later, while a student at Plymouth Art College, he began selling his cartoon drawings to newspapers. Since 1964 he has published a number of successful books for children, including the King Rollo stories, which he helped animate for British television. His first book for Lothrop was Snow Woman, of which Publishers Weekly said, "It is McKee's superb humor—conveyed almost solely in the illustrations...that wins the day." Of his second Lothrop book, Who's a Clever Baby, Publishers Weekly had this to say: "Grandma's alliterative frenzies are fascinating and readers will find Baby's manipulative stubbornness vastly amusing."

Mr. McKee enjoys traveling and doing books that "leave things unsaid."

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(10)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2012

    Wonderful book!

    I teach elementary education majors at a university. I use this book when we are connecting art projects to children's literature. There are so many possibilities! I also use this book as an example of how books can teach concepts to children. Children learn to enjoy being themselves, rather than try to be like others. Children love Elmer!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2012

    This book is AMAZING! From the moment I first read it, I knew I

    This book is AMAZING! From the moment I first read it, I knew I had to
    read it to my classes. The message is simple and basic - even for junior
    high kids! I read up to the part where it describes Elmer (and I don't
    show them the cover either) then ask them to color an outline of an
    elephant to show their own uniqueness. When they're finished, I read the
    whole book to them and then we hang up our elephants and have our own
    "Elmer's Day Parade" all year long!

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  • Posted September 7, 2011

    A Book for Everyone

    Poor little Elmer will do anything to fit in with the herd. Elmer's elephant friends love his designs and humor but he does not. He tried to be clever and fit in. Will he regret his decision?

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  • Posted December 16, 2009

    Long Live Elmer

    A classic children's book, Elmer is the tale of someone who is different and discovers that everyone likes him that way. Being himself is the best thing he can be. This is a great story which can be read or told again and again.

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  • Posted February 9, 2009

    Great story for kids.

    My 3 year old son loved this book. It is a great learning tool that is fun for him. With the variey of colors and animals in this book, we can spend up to 20-30 minutes with just this book.

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  • Posted February 9, 2009

    Elmer by David McKee

    I first bought "Elmer," by David McKee 2 years ago, when my granddaughter was two years old. I am in Barnes and Noble quite often, but had never seen the book before. The brightly colored patchwork squares caught my eye, and I ended up with stuffed Elmer as well. <BR/><BR/>It is a story of a jokester elephant who is concerned because he does not look like everyone else, so goes off by himself to do some thinking. While he was away in the forest, he rolled in some berries that turned his skin gray. Later, when Elmer returned to the herd, they did not know who he was, but he overheard them say that they missed him and the way he made them laugh every day.<BR/><BR/>When it began to rain on the evening of his return, Elmer's patchwork colors began to show through as the gray dye of the berries wore off. His friends were so happy to have him back, and he realized that he did not have to look like everyone else to make his place in the herd.<BR/><BR/>When I asked my granddaughter what she thought of the book, she said that she thought Elmer was beautiful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2003

    Good for Girl Scouts

    This book was read to Brownie Girl Scout troop for a program on friendship and accepting differences. The girls enjoyed the story and the discussion.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2001

    Teaching Diversity without Bringing in Race

    I believe that 'Elmer' is a fantastic book to teach young children about diversity amoung groups. Elmer is different from his family and friends yet overcomes ridicule to become a strong figure in his culture. GREAT TO TEACH AND ENTERTAIN!!!

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    Posted February 23, 2009

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    Posted November 30, 2012

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    Posted November 14, 2009

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    Posted November 17, 2010

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