|Image from BarnesandNoble.com|
Once again, Henkes has created an endearing mouse protagonist who is learning how to navigate the world (see also Chrysanthemum and Shelia Rae, the Brave). Wemberly, with her white fur and grey spots, is a wide-eyed worrier. The illustrations are colorful and fully support the conversational text. The book is linear and can be thought of in two parts. First, we learn about Wemberly’s every day worries and then the new worry, school, is introduced and we see how Wemberly deals with her worries in this new environment.
This is a wonderful story for a preschool or kindergarten child who is a constant worrier because it’s reassuring to know they aren’t the only one who worries. Before you read the book, ask the kids what they worry about. You can extend this into a craft activity, check out Mrs. T’sFirst Grade Class blog. After you read the book, ask them why Wemberly worried a little bit less when she was playing with Jewel at school. You can also ask them what they would do to help Wemberly worry less.
Pair this book with Little Mouse’s Big Book of Fears for a storytime about fears and worries. The alliteration in the title also makes this a good choice for a W themed storytime. Ask the kids to think of other things that start with the letter W that Wemberly might worry about.