The Cat's Quizzer

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Illus. in full color. The Cat in the Hat challenges readers with seemingly silly questions: Do pineapples grow on pine or apple trees? Do roosters sleep on their backs or sides? Kids will pick up a host of oddball facts, have fun juggling sense and nonsense, and exercise their imaginations.

The Cat in the Hat plays quiz master by challenging the reader with both entertaining and educational questions such as "Are freckles catching?"...

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Overview

Illus. in full color. The Cat in the Hat challenges readers with seemingly silly questions: Do pineapples grow on pine or apple trees? Do roosters sleep on their backs or sides? Kids will pick up a host of oddball facts, have fun juggling sense and nonsense, and exercise their imaginations.

The Cat in the Hat plays quiz master by challenging the reader with both entertaining and educational questions such as "Are freckles catching?" and "How old do you have to be to drive a car?"

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780785790785
  • Publisher: Turtleback Books: A Division of Sanval
  • Publication date: 8/28/1976
  • Pages: 72
  • Product dimensions: 6.70 (w) x 9.22 (h) x 0.49 (d)

Meet the Author

THEODOR SEUSS GEISEL—aka Dr. Seuss—is one of the most beloved children’s book authors of all time. From The Cat in the Hat to Oh, the Places You’ll Go!, his iconic characters, stories, and art style have been a lasting influence on generations of children and adults. The books he wrote and illustrated under the name Dr. Seuss (and others that he wrote but did not illustrate, including some under the pseudonyms Theo. LeSieg and Rosetta Stone) have been translated into thirty languages. Hundreds of millions of copies have found their way into homes and hearts around the world. Dr. Seuss’s long list of awards includes Caldecott Honors for McElligot’s Pool, If I Ran the Zoo, and Bartholomew and the Oobleck, the Pulitzer Prize, and eight honorary doctorates. Works based on his original stories have won three Oscars, three Emmys, three Grammys, and a Peabody.

Biography

Now that generations of readers have been reared on The Cat in the Hat and Fox in Socks, it's easy to forget how colorless most children's books were before Dr. Seuss reinvented the genre. When the editorial cartoonist Theodor Seuss Geisel wrote And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street in 1936, the book was turned down by 27 publishers, many of whom said it was "too different." Geisel was about to burn his manuscript when it was rescued and published, under the pen name Dr. Seuss, by a college classmate.

Over the next two decades, Geisel concocted such delightfully loopy tales as The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins and Horton Hears a Who. Most of his books earned excellent reviews, and three received Caldecott Honor Awards. But it was the 1957 publication of The Cat in the Hat that catapulted Geisel to celebrity.

Rudolf Flesch's book Why Johnny Can't Read, along with a related Life magazine article, had recently charged that children's primers were too pallid and bland to inspire an interest in reading. The Cat in the Hat, written with 220 words from a first-grade vocabulary list, "worked like a karate chop on the weary little world of Dick, Jane and Spot," as Ellen Goodman wrote in The Detroit Free Press. With its vivid illustrations, rhyming text and topsy-turvy plot, Geisel's book for beginning readers was anything but bland. It sold nearly a million copies within three years.

Geisel was named president of Beginner Books, a new venture of Random House, where he worked with writers and artists like P.D. Eastman, Michael Frith, Al Perkins, and Roy McKie, some of whom collaborated with him on book projects. For books he wrote but didn't illustrate, Geisel used the pen name Theo LeSieg (LeSieg is Geisel spelled backwards).

As Dr. Seuss, he continued to write bestsellers. Some, like Green Eggs and Ham and the tongue-twisting Fox in Socks, were aimed at beginning readers. Others could be read by older children or read aloud by parents, who were often as captivated as their kids by Geisel's wit and imagination. Geisel's visual style appealed to television and film directors, too: The animator Chuck Jones, who had worked with Geisel on a series of Army training films, brought How the Grinch Stole Christmas! to life as a hugely popular animated TV special in 1966. A live-action movie starring Jim Carrey as the Grinch was released in 2000.

Many Dr. Seuss stories have serious undertones: The Butter Battle Book, for example, parodies the nuclear arms race. But whether he was teaching vocabulary words or values, Geisel never wrote plodding lesson books. All his stories are animated by a lively sense of visual and verbal play. At the time of his death in 1991, his books had sold more than 200 million copies. Bennett Cerf, Geisel's publisher, liked to say that of all the distinguished authors he had worked with, only one was a genius: Dr. Seuss.

Good To Know

The Cat in the Hat was written at the urging of editor William Spaulding, who insisted that a book for first-graders should have no more than 225 words. Later, Bennett Cerf bet Geisel $50 that he couldn't write a book with just 50 words. Geisel won the bet with Green Eggs and Ham, though to his recollection, Cerf never paid him the $50.

Geisel faced another challenge in 1974, when his friend Art Buchwald dared him to write a political book. Geisel picked up a copy of Marvin K. Mooney Will You Please Go Now! and a pen, crossed out each mention of the name "Marvin K. Mooney," and replaced it with "Richard M. Nixon." Buchwald reprinted the results in his syndicated column. Nine days later, President Nixon announced his resignation.

The American Heritage Dictionary says the word "nerd" first appeared in print in the Dr. Seuss book If I Ran the Zoo: "And then, just to show them, I'll sail to Ka-Troo / And bring back an It-Kutch a Preep and a Proo / A Nerkle a Nerd and a Seersucker, too!" The word "grinch," after the title character in How the Grinch Stole Christmas, is defined in Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary as a killjoy or spoilsport.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Theodor Seuss Geisel (full name); also: Theo LeSieg, Rosetta Stone
    1. Date of Birth:
      March 2, 1904
    2. Place of Birth:
      Springfield, Massachusetts
    1. Date of Death:
      September 4, 1991
    2. Place of Death:
      La Jolla, California

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 19, 2001

    Everybody Passes . . . and Learns Thinking and Reading, Too!

    This book clearly deserves more than five stars, and is one of the very best Dr. Seuss books for beginning readers. The only thing that's missing are the rhymes! 'Here is Ziggy Zozzfozzel with his sister Zizzy.' 'They got every question wrong. Are YOU smarter than a Zozzfozzel?' Aw, if school had only been full of challenges like that, everyone would have focused on learning instead of grades. Some may object that by setting the standard low, accomplishment is stilted. I think it is enhanced, because children will want to get as many more right as they can versus the Zozzfozzels. By the way, although this is a book of quiz questions (nicely feeding into the mania of shows like Who Wants To Be a Millionaire?), this is the teacher's edition. The answers can be found on pages 58-62. Let me begin by praising this book as a beginning reader. Each item is well illustrated so that a child can associate the words with the images. There is a lot of variety in short words (only a few words are long, like the nonsensical name, Zozzfozzel). So a youngster can learn more words from this book than from 2 or 3 of most beginning readers. That makes the book more valuable. Also, the context of asking questions makes the words and images more vivid and memorable, which should speed memorization and learning. Your child can clearly grow into this book over a period of time. The book has mostly pre-school words, but it also has words up to about 2nd grade level. What just bowls me over about this book is the discipline in the quiz questions. First, there are lots of them. So for most children, you will take just a few at one sitting. You could probably work on this book for a week or more the first time you go through it, doing a little bit every day. By the time you pick any page up again, it will seem fresh. Second, the questions test a variety of thinking methods. Mostly the quizzes fall into these categories: Common sense -- Are freckles catching? Spatial puzzles -- gears, ropes, and mazes to study Observing -- Do eyebrows or mustaches grow faster? Word meaning -- How many kings are women? Nature facts -- Which ends of a bee does the stinging? Games -- On a tic tac toe board, who will win? What If? -- Imagine that you jump up in the air and don't come down. What should you do? As you can see, these kinds of questions are perfect for using a few Socratic questions to help guide the youngster down a thinking path that can lead to a correct answer. This means you have a chance to help your child with problem-solving strategies. You can also introduce learning resources (like pictures of a bee in a book) as ways to locate a correct answer. Further, you will get a sense of where your child takes to things like a duck to water . . . and where it is harder for her or him. Then you can spend more time on those trickier areas to boost skill and confidence. Although the questions hardly make the book into a Mensa qualifying test (for high IQ people), many of them are interesting enough to keep the adults alert. Also, there is a lot of potential for more than one correct answer (especially with the 'what if' questions). This provides a chance to exercise imagination and to expose ambiguity. After you have exhausted and worn out this quiz, you can go on to create new quiz questions for one another. I suggest that you keep it a competition against getting them all wrong, rather than indirectly setting up any other kind of comparison. Now, where do pineapples come from (besides the grocery store)? Donald Mitchell, co-author of The 2,000 Percent Solution and The Irresistible Growth Enterprise

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2000

    Top Notch Book

    I remember reading this book many times when I was younger. It was entertaining each time I read it, despite what the critics might say. I absolutely loved this book.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2000

    Loads of fun, very engaging

    A prior review mentioned that it's only fun the first-time around. That couldn't be more wrong. Anyone familiar with kids' books knows that kids enjoy the repetition, the feeling that they're really learning the characters and material.<p> This book offers not only the ever-lovable Dr. Seuss style, but also the ability to truly engage children who get to guess (and, during later readings, show off their knowledge) from beginning to end.<p> A really great book; kids love it!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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