Ten Flashing Fireflies

Ten Flashing Fireflies

4.0 1
by Philemon Sturges, Anna Vojtech

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Luminous pictures and a buoyant, chant-aloud text, combine to make this two-way counting book as joyous and magical as catching fireflies on a summer night. See more details below

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Luminous pictures and a buoyant, chant-aloud text, combine to make this two-way counting book as joyous and magical as catching fireflies on a summer night.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Breaking up the deep grays, purples and the black of night with incandescent spots of light, the illustrator of this imaginatively conceived book captures the magic of summer evenings and the mysterious glow of fireflies. These marvelous creatures of nature, meanwhile, are deployed in debut author Sturges's poetic counting lesson. ``What do we see in the summer night?/ Ten flashing fireflies burning bright!/ Catch the one twinkling there/ Like a star./ One flashing firefly in our jar.'' A brother and sister add nine more fireflies to their collection; later, in their bedroom, they free the fireflies when their light begins to fade, counting down from 10 to one as the insects escape through the window and begin to glow again. This counting book, with atmospheric, dusky chalk illustrations and a subtle lesson in compassion, makes a memorable entry in a heavily populated picture-book category. Ages 3-6. (May)
Children's Literature - Paula Demichael
Ten Flashing Fireflies is a contribution to the explosion of "concept books" for pre-schoolers. In this one, a brother and sister count down from 10 to 1 by catching fireflies and putting them in a jar. The rhymed text itself would be rather boring without the wonderful art by Anna Vojtech, whose painting evokes the thrill of catching the elusive insects on a summer evening. A surprise ending teaches the children that things don't always go as planned. Very young children may not respond to the darkness and subtle humor of the art.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1Unusual double-page spreads in deep nighttime colors, with the shapes of frolicking children, trees, houses, and animals only dimly seen, are sparked by the glowing orbs of fireflies as a red-haired, round-faced brother and sister capture the glowworms one by one and put them in a jar. When 10 are imprisoned and brought into the house, their lights blink out. Then the window is opened, they are released immediately, and they fly up into the darkness, flashing once again. The rhymed text of this counting book (1-10 and back again) is lyrical, expressive, varied, and excellent for reading out loud. The illustrations reflect the universal mystery and excitement of playing outdoors on a summer night and catching those strange creatures lit by cold fire.Patricia Pearl Dole, formerly at First Presbyterian School, Martinsville, VA
Lauren Peterson
With a beautiful summer evening serving as backdrop, 10 fireflies disappear, one by one, from the dark sky as a young boy and girl capture them and put them in a jar. As each one vanishes from the sky, corresponding text counts down from 10 to 1. Simultaneously, the glow of the fireflies' light reappears in the jar, and the count goes up from 1 to 10, providing a visual exercise in addition and subtraction. Teachers will love this truly "whole language" book, which concludes with the children watching the fireflies fly away one by one. Sturges' singsongy text, with its repetition and rhyme, makes it perfect for choral reading, and it also would nicely complement a science unit on insects. Vojtech's striking illustrations are beautifully rendered in muted shades of violet and green, providing a rich, dark foil for the glow of the fireflies. This most unusual counting book captures the charm and innocence of a favorite summertime activity.

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Product Details

Demco Media
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
8.72(w) x 10.08(h) x 0.41(d)
Age Range:
4 - 7 Years

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