Monday, July 23, 2012

Great Picture Books for Cooperation

Cooperation is tantamount to the success of any human being.  Children can use this skill with parents, siblings, friends, aquaintances, etc.  

We have trouble at our house, as most surely do, with siblings sharing.  When reminded that if they cooperate and play nicely together, then everyone has more fun.  It really does work, but it helps to keep a book highlighting cooperation in the mix.  As always, take full advantage of your library.  Most of the books mentioned here we do not own.  I love the variety of stories and ideas that we can share with our kids because of the vast collection available to us through the library.

Greysen, my 5 year old book-lover, recently had a gift certificate for Barnes and Noble that "needed" spending.  We happened upon this first book.  Sitting in the store, we read a whole stack of books and this is the one that Greysen chose to take home.  

Red and Yellow's Noisy Night 
by Josh Selig
The illustrations are lovely and the simple story tells of olive tree inhabitants, Red and Yellow, who must work together to have a peaceful night.  The story is actually based on "The Olive Branch," an animated television series that promotes an understanding of conflict resolution and mutual respect.  More information is available through The Little Light Foundation.  Their website includes a wordless video of Red and Yellow's story:    I look forward to what the foundation may do next.

My Friend Rabbit 
by Eric Rohmann
Rabbit always seems to get into trouble, but he fortunately has some great friends that with some cooperation can solve any problem. This Caldecott Award winner really captures children's attention.  They want everything to turn out well and root for everyone working together.

The Little Red Pen 
by Susan Stevens Crummel and Janet Stevens 
This is a fantastic take on the classic story The Little Red Hen.  The illustrations are fun and oh do the kids enjoy seeing the inanimate objects come to life.  The little red pen's friends do not want to help her.  "Not I!"  This story goes further than most Little Red Hen adaptations, in that the conflict is resolved through the cooperation of the friends.

The Tale of Pip and Squeak 
by Kate Duke
A tale of sibling discord, but when they have a common goal they learn to work together or cooperate.  The illustrations are quite detailed and the overall message is a great one for bickering siblings or friends.  

Cooperation books continued: 

by Leo Lionni

Duck and Goose 
by Tad Hills

A Little Story About a Big Turnip 

by Tatiana Zunshine

Whale is Stuck/Whale Gets Stuck 
by Karen Hayles, illustrated by Charles Fuge
[It appears that this book had a recent reprint under a new title, but both are the same book.]

Howard B. Wigglebottom Learns to Listen 
by Howard Binkow
This book also has a great accompanying website ( where you can watch/read many Wigglebottom stories and access other related activities. 

We love new books at our house - if you love any other literature on this topic, please share!

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