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Mary Had a Little Lamb Board book – January 26, 2004


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Full-color photographs reinvigorate the 18th-century classic poem. Ages 2-6.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

It is difficult to set a classic piece of poetry in the historical context in which it belongs and at the same time enable it to evolve and stay alive and fresh. But that is just what McMillan has so artfully done in this picture-book version of the poem. In an inventive blend of layout and design, he meshes the old and new together. The delicate endpapers and old-fashioned edgings to the photographs all serve as the proper background for the black, bespectacled young girl who is the model for Mary and the real coup of the book. This is a Mary who goes to school in an old-fashioned building, but with a male teacher. With her bright smile and yellow overalls, she is sure to connect with children meeting Mary for the first time. Mary has been portrayed elsewhere, such as in the picture-book version by Tomie dePaola (Holiday, 1984) as a lovely old-fashioned figure complete with pinafore and ringlets. McMillan has proven that this is no longer a universal portrayal. The fine design and excellent color scheme as well as the afterword, original poem, and explanations about the book make this a wonderfully crafted book that no library should miss. --Jane Marino, White Plains Pub . Lib . , NY
Copyright 1990 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: 1 - 3 years
  • Board book: 28 pages
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers (January 26, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039924221X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399242212
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.6 x 5.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #79,899 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
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4 star
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See all 11 customer reviews
I fully recommend "Mary Had a Little Lamb" by Sarah Josepha Hale and Tomie dePaola.
A.Trendl HungarianBookstore.com
This book also teaches the wonderful bond that can be had between children, adults and animals through caring deeply for all creatures.
Luiza Marrandino
Now as an adult,hoping to start a family of my own one day,I would love this book as a keepsake for my own kids.
Monique Lewis

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Kelly Mathews on May 8, 2005
Format: Board book
ALERT TO ALL READERS AND AMAZON CONTENT EDITORS YOU HAVE REVIEWS HERE FOR MCMILLAN, NOT HALE & TOMIE DEPAOLA VERSION! THIS IS THE SARAH JOSEPHA HALE AND TOMIE DEPAOLA VERSION. IT IS TOLD IN A LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE EARLY AMERICAN PIONEER SETTING NOT MODERN TIMES, NOR WITH A YOUNG BLACK GIRL AS MARY. THERE ARE CHILDREN OF DIFFERENT ETHNICITIES IN THE CLASS.

That said, this is a fine and worthy book, full of color and the graphic remind me of woodcut style. The lyrics are poignant, as are the illustrations. Great for toddlers as this is a board book. My toddler loves the bright colors and clear definitions of drawings. This story ends on a high note with the teacher telling the children that her lamb loves her so because she takes care of him and that each child can have the special affections of a pet animal if they treat the animal with kindness. Really great if you have a child wanting a pet. Good for discussing what being kind means, because it's more than feeding or cleaning up after a pet, it's thinking of the pet's needs with love, not as a chore; you can explain that when they understand this anjd show it, then they can have a pet!
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Format: Board book
That Mary had a little lamb is a known fact. That the lamb followed her everywhere, and even to school is common knowledge.

Why, then, a book "Mary Had a Little Lamb?" As adults, we might think the story has been done to death. Children are new to it, and so begins the enjoyment.

Sarah Josepha Hale wrote the original in 1830, with 24 lines. Most of us are only familiar with the first six. Included here is the entire poem, with illustrations by Tomie dePaola.

As with any book for younger children, the pictures help tell the story. DePaola's illustrations have a woodcut, watercolor look to them. They have a flavor that tends to the way pictures were done years ago, before technology computerized children's illustrations.

A few paragraphs before and after the story explain briefly the history and controversy of the poem. Its authorship was questioned, although Hale is generally considered the true writer.

I fully recommend "Mary Had a Little Lamb" by Sarah Josepha Hale and Tomie dePaola.

Anthony Trendl

editor, HungarianBookstore.com
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By Monique Lewis on May 30, 2012
Format: Library Binding
I have not purchased this book,I would hate to spend so much money,and not get the version I have the image for,but is something totally different.I grew up with this book,I never owned it,but it seems all the elementary schools I went to(3 in all) had it.I looked JUST LIKE the little girl in this book,small,petite,little black girl with braids and glasses.It was embarrassing to basically wait for teachers to pull it out on the 1st day of school every year,and say"Guess who this looks like?!" while the entire class points to me.Specifically a teacher I had in 2nd,6th,and 8th grade,Mrs.Blackmon.I promise you,that woman treasured that book more then me.Way more,since it was a constant for her to point it out,no matter how old I got,or the fact that I no longer wore thick braids or bifocals,lol.Now as an adult,hoping to start a family of my own one day,I would love this book as a keepsake for my own kids.I would just like to know its the right version that I want and am getting.Thanks regardless,Amazon,for at least this image,it made me very happy to see it :))
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Format: Library Binding Verified Purchase
I have been using this book for the past 14 years in my classroom and needed to replace it. I read it to the children during the beginning of the year as a way to talk about coming to school and being away from their caregiver or parents. I have a stuffed lamb that they can hold while they are feeling sad or missing their family. This book is a treasure. The photos are amazing. I bought a used copy and it was in great condition. I highly recommend it for home and school.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Helllo, My Name is Sarah! I posed as "Mary" in this book photographed by Bruce McMillan. I was in Kindergarten when I was in this book, living in Maine. I am so excited that this book is so beloved. I had such a wonderful experience working on this book. I now have children and they love it too. We live in another northern US State, Michigan!
I am still very surprised that 1-3rd grade students have seen this book before. Highly recommended from "Mary"
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By K. San on September 24, 2013
Format: Board book Verified Purchase
This version of Mary Had a Little Lamb is my favorite. It's a sweet story and a wonderful message to children. If you are kind to animals they will be kind to you too. Tomie dePaola illustrations are fabulous and I highly recommend this book. I can't wait to read it to my daughter!
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