When Winter Comes: A Lullaby


Where oh where do the leaves all go when winter comes and the cold winds blow?

What happens to fish, flowers, field mice, and other living things when ponds freeze and the air turns blustery? Walk with a curious child and his parents as winter's first snow falls and find out....

Rhyming text asks what happens to different animals and plants "when winter comes and the cold wind blows."

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Where oh where do the leaves all go when winter comes and the cold winds blow?

What happens to fish, flowers, field mice, and other living things when ponds freeze and the air turns blustery? Walk with a curious child and his parents as winter's first snow falls and find out....

Rhyming text asks what happens to different animals and plants "when winter comes and the cold wind blows."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Winter's first snowflakes have arrived, and as they dance to earth with the lingering autumn leaves, a bundled-up family and their pet Scottie head outdoors to celebrate the world being transformed. "Where oh where do the leaves all go/ when winter comes and the cold winds blow?" begins Van Laan's (So Say the Little Monkeys) poetic text. Similarly phrased questions--all with this lilting refrain--prompt a variety of rhyming answers. Caterpillars, for instance, retreat "Inside their cocoons,/ so tightly wound,/ waiting for spring/ to bring green to the ground." Even the family's red-cheeked child has a cozy haven from the ever-deepening snow in "a warm, warm bed/ .../ snuggling deep, fast asleep." Gaber (Pierre's Dream) uses a textured, antique-looking background for her wintry skies with a hint of holly berry-red and pine-green shades, and frames her nature scenes from a variety of viewpoints. Her characters' bright faces and vibrant outer vestments offer warm relief from the frigid winter scenery. Ages 2-7. (Oct.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
Brief rhymed couplets in large type, with repeated refrain, pose the questions children ask about where the leaves, flowers, birds, mice, fish, etc. go "when winter comes and the cold winds blow." The simple answers are reassuring to the anxious or curious child, who here ends the day in a warm bed, snugly asleep. Although the words tend to be a bit prosaic, Gaber's double-page acrylic pictures provoke more poetic emotions. Contrasting bright reds and blues of clothing with the pale green of sky and snow-covered landscape add sparkle to the scenes, while close-ups depict the pleasure of discovering a cocoon or a field mouse's nest. The variety of page design hold our attention, while we feel the warmth of the simple adventure more than the weather's chill. 2000, An Anne Schwartz Book/Atheneum Books for Young Readers/Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing Division, Ages 2 to 7, $16.00. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-This lilting book celebrates the onset of winter: "Where oh where do the leaves all go/when winter comes and the cold winds blow?" This question is repeated for flowers, caterpillars, songbirds, field mice, deer, and fish. The rhyming answers use simple and accessible language. Gaber's exuberant acrylic paintings show a child, mother, father, and dog taking a walk through the woods during a snowfall. The use of perspective in the illustrations unifies the book, as broad landscapes appear on the question pages, while close-ups of the family and the animals and plants being discussed appear on the pages with the answers. Through both words and pictures, this book conveys a sense of joy in the changing seasons. From the title page showing the characters bundling up to go outside, to the cozy views of field mice and deer cuddling close for warmth, to the final spread where the child has been tucked into a warm bed, this simple story is the literary equivalent of a cup of hot cocoa on a cold day.-Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Carroll County Public Library, Eldersburg, MD Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
New York Times Book Review
Out walking on a blustery afternoon as the first snow falls, a child asks sensible questions in rhyme, and the parents answer, explaining what happens to the flowers, the birds, the caterpillars. Soft, progressively snowy pictures.
Kirkus Reviews
"Where oh where does everything go when winter comes and the cold winds blow?" A family discovers the answers as they take a walk on a day that begins with snow falling on green grass and ends with the landscape covered in white. Readers learn where leaves, flowers, caterpillars, songbirds, field mice, deer, fish, and children go during the cold months of winter. Leaves tumble down, petals wilt, caterpillars go inside their cocoons, birds fly south, field mice tunnel underground, fish swim deep, and deer wander, leaving footprints in the snow. The child goes, "In a warm, warm bed when winter comes round, listening to the wind with its gusting sound, watching the snow as it falls to the ground." On the last page we see this adorable child in bed, under a quilt, "Snuggling deep. Fast asleep." Little ones love rhyme and repetition, and by the end they will be chanting the "where oh where" question each time it appears. Van Laan dedicates this to her first grandchild, who will surely enjoy the subtle educational text. Gaber's lovely, soft, acrylic illustrations show a rosy-cheeked child in full wide-eyed wonder and successfully convey the peace and quiet of a snowy day. (Picture book. 2-7)Vande Velde, Vivian THE RUMPELSTILTSKIN PROBLEM Houghton Mifflin (128 pp.) Oct. 2000
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689817786
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 10/28/2000
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 331,969
  • Age range: 2 - 7 Years
  • Lexile: AD630L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 10.30 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Nancy Van Laan has written many books perfect for reading aloud, including So Say the Little Monkeys; Little Fish, Lost; With a Whoop and a Holler, an American Library Association Notable Book; and the 1990 Parents' Choice Award winner, Possum Come a-Knockin'. She lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Susan Gaber has illustrated a number of picture books, including When Winter Comes, The Stable Where Jesus Was Born, and The Very First Thanksgiving Day. She lives with her family in Huntington, New York.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2002


    Our 20 month old son loves this book almost as much as we do. Beautiful, warm illustrations and rythmic text that draws us right into a snuggly, settle-into-winter mood. A great good night read.

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