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How Do You Wokka-Wokka? Hardcover – August 11, 2009

4.4 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. PreSchool-Grade 1—In an infectious burst of movement, rhythm, and rhyme, a multiethnic cast of children in an urban neighborhood strut their stuff and celebrate their uniqueness. In answer to the call, "How do you wokka-wokka?," the youngsters demonstrate their moves—a flamingo, a mariachi, a clock, a fish—all to the sound of giddy nonsense rhymes and exuberant dancing ("I wokka-wokka/like flamingos/in a flocka—/croakie-yocka/leggy-longy/pinky-hoppa-hoppa"). The sketchy, full-color oil illustrations in muted colors feature cartoon children cavorting alternately against stark white backgrounds or cityscapes as they join a giant block party. This bouncy book is a joy as a read-aloud whether in a group or one-on-one, and kids and adults won't be able to resist making their own nonsense rhymes and dances as they "wokka-wokka" through the book.—Marge Loch-Wouters, La Crosse Public Library, WI
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Review

In an infectious burst of movement, rhythm, and rhyme, a multiethnic cast of children in an urban neighborhood strut their stuff and celebrate their uniqueness.
—School Library Journal (starred review)
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick (August 11, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763632287
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763632281
  • Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 0.4 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,363,968 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a very cute book that amuses me, my husband, and my kiddos. It's got a lot of fun crazy words in it and phrases that my daughter thinks are hilarious, just because they sound funny. I have given this as a gift several times because it is not your average kid book. It's fairly short and just entertaining. "How do you Wokka-Wokka? I wokka-wokka like flamingos in a flocka croakie-yocka leggy-longy pinky-hoppa-hoppa." It's all about dancing and being unique. We love it!
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Format: Hardcover
HOW DO YOU WOKKA-WOKKA? by Elizabeth Bluemle and illustrated by Randy Cecil is a delightful book for preschooler and kindergartners. Since Booking Son is the ideal age for the book, I was very excited to read it to him yesterday afternoon. I definitely enjoyed reading this fun book, and I liked the message about just jumping in and doing the wokka-wokka with all your neighbors.

While Booking Son liked the book, he didn't go so far as to say that he loved it. When I asked him some questions about it, he said that the thought the book was silly -- I think that was the intent! He also said that he liked some of the crazy, mixed-up words and that I sounded funny when I read it. I asked him if he liked to wokka-wokka, and he just kind of shrugged. I thought that was ironic because he often times copies his older sister while she does her hip-hop dances!

Besides the cute story with the catchy rhythms, I also liked the appearance of the book. I thought the illustrations were very cute, and I loved how the illustrator managed to capture the essence of the fun times with the drawings of the kids. I also really liked the large font and the way the words curved around the pictures.

As a mother, I really appreciated the message in this story. I'm not sure my son picked up on it the first time we read it, but I like that kids will see that it's okay to just wokka-wokka -- by that I mean, it's okay to be yourself and let your personality shine. Another terrific thing about this book was that the story took place in an urban environment and the kids were of diverse ethnic backgrounds. I appreciated that the story showed a bunch of different people coming together, letting loose and just having fun.

I recommend HOW DO YOU WOKKA-WOKKA? for preschoolers, especially as a read-aloud book during story time. I think catchy jazz-like phrases and the message that you can show your individuality will appeal to many youngsters as well as adults.
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By M. Fuka on September 16, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
All I can say is...kids love this book! K-gr. 4. Great for movement activities and pattern writing! Ya GOTTA wokka-wokka!
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Format: Hardcover
This book begs to be read aloud to a group of kids in a daycare or preschool setting, and you know they're not going to sit still. They're going to get up and dance, showing off their own unique wokkas. The rhymes are fine and fun, and the illustrations make you want to get your groove-on move on and join the block-a wokka party!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased this book for my two toddlers, and we all absolutely love it! With the author's sing-song style of writing, this fun read will literaly make you want to get up and dance! It's a must read for kids 2-7 years of age.
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Format: Hardcover
A boy woke up and went to a window to greet the day by throwing his arms up in the air. A kitty in the next window was watching and when he went down to the streets he followed right along. He was thinking that the day was the kind of day you "just gotta wokka" and say "HEY!" to everyone around. He and his orange kitty with the striped tale started asking people how they wokka-wokka. One girl "wokka-wokka like flamingos in a flocka" and another boy like a "mariachi with maracas." They all started dancing together as they went down the street. It wasn't too long before the whole neighborhood was having a wokka-wokka party.

"Nobody wokkas in the same wokka way.
It's a wokka-wokka party each and every wokka day!
We all gonna rocka cakewalk till we droppa.
Yeah, ya gotta wokka!"

This was an exciting, vibrant story in rhyme with children who wokka-wokka dance their way through the book. Preschoolers especially have their own brand of nonsense words and this rhythmical tale will be lots of fun to read to them. It's a surefire way to get a few giggles out of youngsters, especially if you use this one during circle or story time. I can just picture a classroom full of children practicing their "wokka in their own crazy way." It's wokka-wokka party time!
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Format: Hardcover
I'm not sure it's possible to read this book without tapping your foot, smiling, and ultimately dancing right out of your seat. You can't say that about too many books...
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Format: Hardcover
HOW DO YOU WOKKA-WOKKA is like Elizabeth Bluemle's "Dogs on the Bed" in that it depends on a steady, almost-musical rhythm as you read it for it to really work. Unlike the other book, however, the words are often made-up, and it definitely reads better aloud than silently. The illustrations contribute to the feel that the story is just a great big block party in two dimensions, gathering steam with every turn of the page. The characters span a variety of racial and ethnic backgrounds, and as other reviewers have mentioned, the subtext is the "it's cool to do your own thing" message.

However, my kiddo cares about none of that. What she likes is that reading this book aloud is FUN. It makes her giggle and dance and make up songs and rhymes. It's not her Very Favorite Book, but she's happy to re-discover it when browsing her bookshelf, and she's now eager to read it to her younger sibling. If you aren't ready to be silly and uninhibited as you read, find something else. But if that sounds like your cuppa tea (and your kid's), this is a great buy.
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