Reading/Interest Level: Preschool, Primary
Author: Robie H. Harris
Illustrator: Chris Chatterton
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Learn math, shapes, and counting with this little pupper. After finding a bag of blocks, a puppy is on a quest to make the perfect bed from the shapes, but first he has to figure out what shapes he has. Counting the sides, corners, and straight lines is the perfect recipe to finding out what each block is. After figuring out what makes a rectangle, he still needs more blocks to make his bed—but there are no more rectangles! The puppy must go on to discover what makes a square and triangle next to make the perfect napping spot that he can curl up on.
Now What?: A Math Tale is an interesting combination of real photographs and a hand-drawn dog that interacts with the shapes. The use of different illustration styles creates an imaginative element that makes it fun to look at. The pictures aren’t only blocks though, as most pages feature a blanket and teddy bear, adding variety within the pages. As this is a math book for small children, the counting only goes up to the number four. It goes through all four corners, all four straight lines, and then makes connections to other shapes previously discovered. It also explores words such as short, skinny, and upside-down. This book would work well as a teaching tool in a classroom or to help those learning how to count to four with shapes.