Monday, January 11, 2016

Bernice Gets Carried Away

Bernice Gets Carried Away
written and illustrated by Hannah E. Harrison
2015 (Dial Books for Young Readers)
Source: Orange County Public Library

It was a horrible, dreary day, and it suited Bernice's mood just fine.

You would think going to a party would be fun, but not for Bernice. No frosting rose on her piece of cake. A soda, not of her choice and warm. Pinata smashed before she got a swing and all to show from that biggest of party favors is a stepped on gumdrop. The party was the pits for this fractured feline. But one chance for gala glory remains. When she saw the balloons, Bernice went for it. Not one, not two, not three. She grabbed them all. Being a small tyke grabbing a whole bunch of helium, Bernice gets a new point of view on the party and her getting smaller by the minute party problems. She floats by a cranky squirrel and a bluebird with an empty nest. Settling underneath a black cloud also having a bad day, Bernice gains a fresh perspective and sets about solving her high flying predicament.

I'm a sucker for a book with a hands-on-her-hips kitten on the cover. This is a sweet book with a pretty good message for primary age students (and their teachers): Don't sweat the small stuff. I would read Bernice at the beginning of the year when you are setting expectations. If you are studying states of matter, you can read this as part of a picture book unit on balloons (A Balloon for Isabel and Balloons Over Broadway are two possibilities). No bubbles burst here. This book rises above the norm.

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