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One out of every five U.S. residents functions at a "below basic" level of literacy, struggling with tasks such as rea... More

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Author: Phyllis Root

Illustrator: Christopher Denise

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Publisher: Candlewick Press,

Material: hard cover

Summary: While his parents do outdoor chores, Oliver finds a yellow leaf and follows it into the woods. After losing sight of the leaf, Oliver realizes he's lost, too, and must find his way home. The story is built around the idea that Oliver must figure his way out of his dilemma. It's great for offering examples of successful problem solving.

Type of Reading: family reading, playtime reading

Recommended Age: read together: 3 to 7; read yourself: 6 to 9

Interest Level: 3 to 8

Reading Level: 1.3

Age of Child: Started reading with our child when she was just over 2 years old. We still sometimes get requests for this one, two years later.

Young Reader Reaction: It took a couple readings, but now this is a periodic request at nap time. She likes to 'roar' and help Oliver find his parents.

Adult Reader Reaction: The simple story is wonderful (as are the illustrations) for helping toddlers see that with a pause and some thinking, problems have solutions…and it's okay to ask for help.

Pros: The story moves quickly, as there is a sentence or less on most pages. There's plenty to add if you want to be creative, but the tale carries itself well without it.

Cons: none

Borrow or Buy: Buy this one. Although the recommended age is 5 to 6, the book is clearly valuable at different stages of a toddler/preschooler's development.

If You Liked This Book, Try: THE RAINBOW FISH   COURAGE   WINNIE THE POOH & HIS FRIENDS (SET OF 4 BOARD BOOKS: Roo's Big Adventure, Blackberry Surprise, A Reel Fishy Story, Nightime Mystery )

Educational Themes: The story combines lessons on the joys of discovery, the fear of getting lost, the idea of solving our own problems, the importance of asking for help, and remembering parents will always help and love you, in just a few pages.

Literary Categories: Fiction - picture book, animal characters, emotions

Date(s) Reviewed: November 2003

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