|Image from BarnesandNoble.com|
“How are an apple and an orange alike?”
Did you say they were both fruits? No. Foods? No. From trees? No. They both don’t wear glasses! So begins this book of illustrated offbeat and quirky riddles. Each page shows a pair of items, such as a bike and a motorcycle, a spoon and a fork, and a bird and a kite, that have an obvious connection. But turn the page and you’ll find the answer to the riddle isn’t exactly what you had guessed it would be.
The text in this book is presented in a straightforward pattern: riddle, answer, riddle, answer. Each answer is always something that the objects or animals don’t do. The watercolor and ink illustrations follow the same pattern. First, the two items in the riddle are shown against a simple background. Turn the page to see an illustration of the two objects/animals doing the ridiculous things the riddle says they don’t do. My favorite is the picture of the cupcake and ice cream cone scuba diving. The book ends with an open ended riddle: “How are you and I alike? We both don’t…” which encourages the reader to answer the riddle on their own.
Use this book to get quiet kids to interact and say their answers out loud. Kids love jokes, even corny ones (I know, because the only jokes I know are corny ones), so make sure you give them time to guess and time to laugh. Have them write their own answer to the riddle at the end of the book or more riddles of the “both don’t” variety. If kids have a difficult time getting started, try giving them pairs to get them started, like a sock and a slipper, an umbrella and a raincoat, or a cup and a bowl.
Invite kids to read their jokes aloud for the group or have kids put their jokes in a hat, mix them up, and have kids choose another person’s joke to read aloud at random.This supports oral fluency and it's a boost to your confidence when other people laugh at your jokes, even when someone else is reading it.
You can introduce Venn diagrams by making lists of all the ways the two items are same/different and then making a diagram to see how they overlap.
Read this for a fruit themed storytime and follow up with the classic Raffi song, Apples and Bananas.