When Joe goes on a walk to the park with his class, he constantly lags behind, thus earning the nickname "Pokey Joe" from some of his impatient classmates. However, by the end of their walk, they, like Joe, come to notice and appreciate some of nature's more hidden wonders, such as an ant's nest or a duckling hatching. Eventually the whole class is eager to see what Joe saw. Large, bright watercolors complement the very brief, repetitive text well.
They call him Pokey Joe. He's always bringing up the rear. But Joe sees things no one else sees. When the class goes to the park, the reader is treated to the special sights that he sees that the others miss. Joe sees a robin eating a worm, a chipmunk, a turtle, a frog, and finally newly hatched ducks. Hines helps us appreciate those children who are curious, observant and march to their own drumbeat.
PreS-Gr 2-A cheerful picture book that encourages acceptance of individual differences. Joe is a slow poke. On the way to the park to visit the ducks, he lags behind the others and in the process sees lots of wonderful things that speedy kids in his class miss-a blue bird, a troop of ants, a squirrel, a turtle. Everybody enjoys and feeds the ducks. On the way back, Pete has to stop to tie his shoelace; he follows Joe's lead, notices some baby ducks in the bushes, and calls to the rest of the children to come back for a look. The realistic watercolor and colored-pencil depictions of the ethnically diverse class alternate with attractive, naturalistic scenes. The text is well placed and well written for a satisfying read-aloud with wide appeal.-Jody McCoy, Casady School, Oklahoma City
Joe is always last in line. The noisy kids call him slowpoke; even the teacher tells him to hurry up; but in the quiet away from the crowd, he sees things that others miss. The watercolor-and-colored-pencil illustrations emphasize the contrast in perspective as the class walks to the park with their lunch. First we see Joe with everybody else; then he's lagging behind, distracted, in the background. Turn the page, and we see close-up the small wonders that Joe sees--individual ants busy at work, a tortoise in the long grass, a bird with a worm. Joe sees the ducks that everyone else sees in the pond, but in a wonderful climax, he shows the class much more than that: the astonishing sight of two ducklings, newly hatched from their shells in the nest.