George Washington's Cows

George Washington's Cows

by Small, David Small
     
 

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Humorous rhymes about George Washington's farm where the cows wear dresses, the pigs wear wigs, and the sheep are scholars. See more details below

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Overview

Humorous rhymes about George Washington's farm where the cows wear dresses, the pigs wear wigs, and the sheep are scholars.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Witty and silly in equal measure, Small's (Ruby Mae Has Something to Say) cheeky expos about the real reason the father of our country went into politics works on a number of conceptual levels. George Washington's farm is home to a host of precocious animals, including some secretive, moody cows (``They had to be dressed in lavendar gowns/ and bedded on cushions of silk/ .../ Begged every hour in obsequious tones,/ Or they just wouldn't give any milk''); house-servant hogs (``Always polite and impeccably dressed,/ They were certainly well-bred swine''); and a crew of scholarly sheep bent on mastering the mysteries of the universe. Illustrations are opulent and expansive, with both the overall conceits and the characters' costumes wonderfully imaginative and inventive. Buoyant rhymed couples have an across-the-board appeal, while the sly political joke that closes the tale will satisfy adults primarily: George, stymied by the animals (``My cows wear dresses, my pigs wear wigs/ And my sheep are more learnd than me''), is last seen in a famous pose, being ferried across the Delaware, and saying, ``Sell the Farm... I'll try Politics!'' Smart entertainment. All ages. (Sept.)
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-You may very well wonder how a man who could not tell a lie ever found his way into the political arena. Well, according to this outlandish historical tall tale, it all began at Mount Vernon. In description befitting the larger-than-life legend, Small relates the trials and tribulations that face gentleman farmer George Washington. As he is forced to cope with extraordinarily fussy cows, dandified pigs, and intellectually superior sheep, it soon becomes apparent that the man is simply not cut out for country living and he jumps at the chance to make a career change. The only thing funnier than this book's lighthearted, irreverent rhyme is its marvelous watercolor artwork. In accurately rendered detail, the artist's engaging double-spread cartoons depict the interiors and grounds of the historical site, and deftly incorporate the engaging, decidedly eccentric cast of characters, all in period costume. The future father of our country laments, ``My cows wear dresses, my pigs wear wigs,/And my sheep are more learned than me./ In all my days on the farm I've seen/nothing to equal such tricks.'' Washington takes a backseat here, but, as is often the case, the forces that motivate greatness are many, varied, and wide open for speculation.-Luann Toth, School Library Journal
Kathy Broderick
r for reading aloud. With his usual flair and sense of humor, Small spoofs daily life at Mount Vernon. A rhyming text introduces the ridiculously pampered life of Washington's cows: "They had to be dressed in lavender gowns / and bedded on cushions of silk, / Fed on a diet of jam and cream scones, / Frequently sprayed with expensive colognes, / Begged every hour in obsequious tones, / Or they just wouldn't give any milk." Small's watercolors immeasurably extend his zany poem and make maximum use of the double-page spreads. Cleverly designed and well-executed scenes are filled with silly details that children will love (like the anthropomorphised farm animals dressed in historical garb and the facial expressions that reveal just what the various human characters are thinking). Small continues his tale with visions of gracious, helpful pigs and serious, scholarly sheep. All of this is very trying for G. W., so he takes off across the Delaware. And who could blame him?
From the Publisher
"Small relates the trials and tribulations that face gentleman farmer George Washington. As he is forced to cope with extraordinarily fussy cows, dandified pigs, and intellectually superior sheep, it soon becomes apparent that the man is simply not cut out for country living, and he jumps at the chance to make a career change. The only thing funnier than this book's lighthearted, irreverent rhyme is its marvelous watercolor artwork."-Starred, School Library Journal

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780374325350
Publisher:
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date:
09/30/1994
Edition description:
1st ed
Pages:
40
Product dimensions:
10.37(w) x 8.35(h) x 0.38(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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