A few light snowflakes fell outside our home yesterday afternoon, much to the delight of my daughter. She quickly ran from window to window, announcing, "Snow! It's winter now! The leaves fall off the tree!" To her, snow means that she will get to build snowmen and sled. And, she quickly reminded us that Christmas will soon be on it's way. It doesn't take much to please a preschooler. I myself am not exactly a big fan of winter, but I have to admit that I find the first snowfall of every year quite exciting, too.
Snow, by Cynthia Rylant, is a new picture book we are looking forward to reading often this fall and winter. The book touches on snow of all types, from big fat flakes to the lightest delicate snow that dances down to the ground. But, most importantly, the lyrical verses celebrate the feelings that a snowfall brings about, especially in children. The blue tinted illustrations of Lauren Stringer help evoke the very best memories of snowfalls in our past and elicits anticipation for those yet to occur. Her paintings magically bring a little girl and her grandmother to life, surrounded by a world brimful of snow. According to Rylant, "The best snow is the snow that comes softly in the night, like a shy friend afraid to knock..." That may be so for her, but in our family we agree, the best snow is the first few flakes of the year!
Snow, by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Lauren Stringer. Harcourt Children's Books (Nov. 2008), 40 pages, ISBN 978-0-15-205303-1
Activity and Curriculum Guide available from www.laurenstringer.com