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Monday on the Mississippi Hardcover – March 24, 2005

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 4–This colorful picture book takes readers on a cruise down Old Man River, beginning in Minnesota on Monday: "A little stream among so many streams./A little girl wiggles her toes/in the shallow water and wonders,/How long before we're big and strong, little Mississippi?/How many miles? How many days?" The journey ends on Sunday in Louisiana at the river's mouth, where a boy ponders: "Will I ever see where you start, big Mississippi?/Will I ever tell where you end/and the wide, wide sea begins?" The poetic text highlights a few important locations and historical events along the way. Lessac's primitive gouache illustrations brightly reflect each day's trip, showing children on the riverbanks engaging in interesting activities while barges, steamboats, and tugboats float by. The book opens with a map of the river's entire span, and every spread includes a smaller view of the day's featured area. Two pages of appended notes fill in some details about the places and events referred to in the narrative. Beautifully executed in text and illustrations, this title offers an enjoyable read as well as an educational one. It begs to be used in a unit on the Mississippi, perhaps in conjunction with Jill Esbaum's Ste-e-e-e-eamboat a-comin'! (Farrar, 2005).– Judith Constantinides, formerly at East Baton Rouge Parish Main Library, LA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 2-4, younger for reading aloud. In On the Same Day in March (2000), collaborators Singer and Lessac highlighted locations around the globe to drive home variations in climate, culture, and landscape. A waterway as mighty as the Mississippi similarly contains multitudes, and here it supports 14 snapshotlike poems charting the river's progress from its source in Minnesota to its Gulf of Mexico delta. In a folk-art style studded with painstaking details (tiny bargeworkers in St. Paul, a baby gator in swampy Arkansas), Lessac captures both the changing environment and the water's chameleon-like shifts in color. Although labeled maps give children a clear sense of the big picture, the premise occasionally seems as cloudy as Big Muddy itself. There is no stable point of view to make the "journey" concrete, and the poems confusingly mix fictional situations and historical references that are reliant on the endnote for clarification. Still, the collection's interdisciplinary applications are numerous, and creative teachers will surely find ways to extend its usefulness both above and below the age level of the core audience. Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 9 years
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR); First Edition edition (April 6, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 080507208X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805072082
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 0.4 x 10.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,400,377 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Marilyn Singer was born in the Bronx (New York City) on October 3, 1948 and lived most of her early life in N. Massapequa (Long Island), NY. She attended Queens College, City University of New York, and for her junior year, Reading University, England. She holds a B.A. in English from Queens and an M.A. in Communications from New York University.

In 1974, after teaching English in New York City high schools for several years, she began to write - initially film notes, catalogues, teacher's guides, and film strips. Then, one day, when she was sitting in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, she penned a story featuring talking insect characters she'd made up when she was eight. Encouraged by the responses she got, she wrote more stories, and in 1976, her first book, The Dog Who Insisted He Wasn't, was published by E.P.Dutton & Co.

Since then, Marilyn has published over eighty books for children and young adults. Her genres are many and varied, including realistic novels, fantasies, non-fiction, fairy tales, picture books, mysteries and poetry. She likes writing many different kinds of books because it's challenging and it keeps her from getting bored.

Marilyn currently lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband Steve; their standard poodle Oggi, seen in the home page photo; a cat named August ; two collared doves named Jubilee and Holiday; and a starling that says, "Hi. How are you? Sweet Birdie. Okay!" Her interests include ballroom/Latin dancing, dog training, reading, hiking, bird-watching, gardening, playing computer adventure games, and going to the movies and the theatre. She's also a major Star Trek fan.

Marilyn is the former host of the AOL Children's Writers Chat and currently co-hosts the Poetry Blast at various conferences. Visit her web site: www.marilynsinger.net.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Having no idea what to expect when we first opened this book I was pleasantly surprised to discover that within its pages there was contained some great history and geography. Starting at the source of the great Mississippi at Lake Itasca in Minnesota we see a young girl playing in the stream. From there we head to St. Paul where it is much bigger then to the Great Bear on the Wisconsin side of the river. Dubuque, Iowa is the next stop, followed by Hannibal, Missouri (home of Mark Twain), down to the Arch in St. Louis, Cairo where the Ohio River joins in, Reelfoot Lake where the earthquake of 1811/12 caused the river to flow backwards, Memphis to Mud Island, a couple stops in Arkansas, Vicksburg in Mississippi and lastly down to New Orleans.

At the end there are two pages of writing explaining in more detail some of what we have already read and expounding on the Mississippi River.

The illustrations are not the best in that they are a little childish but the maps on each page are great and this is definitely a great teaching tool.
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By Marcia A. Ray on February 20, 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great and interesting
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