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Mama Zooms Paperback – December 1, 1995

4.8 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

When a toddler sits on his mother's lap, he pictures himself transformed into a jockey racing across green lawns, a ship captain negotiating stormy seas, a smooth race car driver, a pilot whipped by wind in an open airplane, a train engineer peering down a dark tunnel. But this is no ordinary lap of pretend, because Mama has a "zooming machine"--a wheelchair that transports mother and child to work and play and, best of all, far away realms of the imagination. Cowen-Fletcher's full-page pastel and pencil illustrations, frequently enhanced by the use of close-ups, depict within crisp outlines an energetic boy in changing costumes and appropriate positions on his mother's knees. A sense of motion that provokes joy makes it easy for little ones to join in the zooming from morning to bedtime, when "Mama is just my mama, and that's how I like her best." With mother and son obviously relishing their every moment together, youngsters will warm to this unusual and commendable book--an unaffected portrait of a physically challenged individual. Ages 3-6.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 2-- It's natural for a young boy to think his mother is omnipotent. Add to that the fact that she's wheelchair mobile and the pair have some wonderful adventures. On his mother's lap, the narrator imagines himself a jockey, a sea captain, a racing-car driver, a pilot, a train engineer, and an astronaut. Anchoring these exploits and tying them to reality is his father, who puts the child on his mother's lap in the morning and pushes her up the "very steepest hills." Rather than being a fully fleshed-out story, the poetic text describes the action in the full-page drawings done in pastel and colored pencils. "Mama zooms me through a puddle and she's my ship at sea. Mama zooms me across a bridge and she's my airplane." The pictures feature an attractive woman, her costumed son, and her manually operated vehicle. Some are closeups, while others show an entire scene. Children will tune in to the fantasy and enjoy the speed and energy captured in the artwork. The large type and simple sentence structure are appropriate for beginning readers. Best of all, this understated book presents a positive image of a physically challenged individual. --Nancy Seiner, The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Lexile Measure: AD750L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 1 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic (December 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0590457756
  • ISBN-13: 978-0590457750
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.2 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #496,391 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: School & Library Binding
I love this book, I am a mother of a beautiful daughter and I am a paraplegic the frist time I read this book I cried. Because right now I am just mommy and someday soon my baby will come to me with questions, and now I will have a way to help her better understand the answers. I highly recommend this book to anyone with or without a disability, children or not, it's wonderful!!!
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Format: School & Library Binding Verified Purchase
Oh my gosh...where to begin? I love this book so much. My daughter has spina bifida and uses a wheelchair. We make it a point to try and ensure that any "disability" themed book she encounters treats the characters with respect (no thanks to any pity themes!) and this one is perfect! The story is of a little boy and his mother who uses a wheelchair. They have lots of adventures together where she holds him on her lap while she "zooms" around in her chair and he pretends to be a pilot, a jockey, an astronaut, etc. When we get to the page where it says "My mama has very strong arms from all our zooming" my daughter always chimes in with her little voice "And I have strong arms too!". The illustrations are lovely and convey the tenderness between the mother and her child.
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By A Customer on March 1, 2000
Format: School & Library Binding
Cowan-Fletcher, Jane. (1993). Mama Zooms. New York: Scholastic.
This picture book is a positive portrayal of a mother with a physical disability, yet does wonderful fun things with her little boy, even "zoom him to the stars". The father is involved and facilities their pretend activities of a racecar, airplane, and train, even a space ship. The soft, warm pastel illustrations strengthen the emotional warmth of the story. The mother is attractively dressed and coifed-even to the two earrings in each ear. The little boy wears the outfits of the pretend characters. Happiness, excitement, mother-son love exude from each illustration. This book is for children ages 5-8 and could be a bedtime story for younger children. After a long day of "zooming" there is a tender picture of the mother holding her sleepy son. I especially like the picture on the flyleaf- the mother in her zooming machine holding the little boy and the father holding the little boy's hand---a happy family. K
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By Bree on February 20, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I actually cried the first time I read this book; I love it for so many reasons....

It handles the issue of disability without hitting you over the head with the subject.

The book connects to what toddlers love best; mommies and pretend play.

The love of a mother and her child "zooms" right off the page and into the hearts of it's readers. The illustrations convey such warmth and affection of the family.

My son loves reading it over and over while pretending to do all the things the mama and little boy are doing. This book is a TREASURE!
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By A Customer on December 19, 1996
Format: Paperback
I was given this book [I have a w/c] and my son and I LOVE it!
She puts a warm spin on an otherwise cold subject: living
with a wheelchair. A must read for those who know someone
in a chair - it helps see the possibilities and not the
impossibilities!
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By Ulyyf on August 24, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a sweet story about a boy spending his days with his mom, zooming here to there, playing make-believe the whole way. When she zooms him down a hall, he's a train conductor, that sort of thing.

His mother zooms him in her wheelchair, but that's only shown in the illustrations, not discussed. There is a mention that "we love ramps", but the fact is that able-bodied children love running up and down ramps too, it doesn't say explicitly "Because Mama can't get up the stairs".

This sort of presentation is, I think, very important in normalizing disability. Books that make a big deal about the subject can serve to make it seem scarier and stranger than it actually is.

This book, by contrast, is a storybook, nothing more. I really recommend this to any child, especially any child who knows anybody who uses a wheelchair.
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Format: School & Library Binding Verified Purchase
This book touched my heart in many ways. As a mother who raised a son while using a motorized wheelchair, it reminded me of the beautiful and unique experiences we had together as mother and child. I bought this book as a gift for my son who is now a father himself. Surprisingly, I too received this book on Christmas from his father, as it reminded him too of a precious and unforgettable time in our lives. Thanks goes out to the author for increasing disability awareness!
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By A Customer on January 10, 2000
Format: Paperback
This is a beautiful book about a mother and her son sharing their daily adventures together on her wheelchair. This book has all the magic and exuberence a children's book should contain. You won't be disappointed!
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