Leaving the Nest

by Mordicai Gerstein

Mordicai Gerstein examines how growth and transformation can happen in a string of... read more

Mordicai Gerstein examines how growth and transformation can happen in a string of moments in a story about a baby blue jay, a baby squirrel, a kitten, and a young girl. One moment, the child is wobbling on her bike, fearful and uncertain. The kitten is eagerly contemplating the great outdoors from behind a screen door. The baby jay is enjoying the security of his cozy nest. The little squirrel is observing it all from the safety of his tree. In an instant, the kitten has gotten outside, the jay has fallen from his nest, the girl has tumbled from her bike, and the squirrel emerges to get an avid, up-close look at all the excitement. Everyone has a different perspective on the turn of events, which continue to change as the girl seeks to save the terrified jay while the kitten and squirrel get acquainted. The chaos is effectively conveyed through the speech bubbles scattered across each page spread. These provide a narrative to accompany the visual storytelling. In the end, everyone is safe, everyone is hungry, and everyone has taken one more step toward independence. (Ages 5–8)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2008

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