Short & Snappy Happy Book Blog: A Fawn in the Grass

Author: Joanne Ryder

Illustrator: Keiko Narahashi

Publisher: Henry Holt and Company

Themes: nature, nature walks, animals, deer

Age Range: 2-5

Word Count: 155 words

Teaching Tools:

How to Go on a Nature Walk

Our Natural World Teaching Guide

Why I Love It: A Fawn in the Grass is short, snappy, and lovely to read to kids any time of year. Rhyming text features several animals and celebrates the wonder of nature. As a little boy takes a nature walk, he discovers a fawn, a snail, a mole, a hawk, a lizard, and more. I love the varying perspectives shown in the illustrations – sometimes down low to the ground and other times up high in the sky. The poetic language of this book has stuck with me through the years. The language is so simple, yet so descriptive. An author’s note discusses the real fawn that inspired this story. A wonderful read aloud for bedtime or any time.


There’s a fawn in the grass,

watching me as I pass.

I am silent and slow

as it watches me go.

There’s a nose in a hole –

and the nose is a mole!

There’s a speck in the sky

as a hawk circles high.

From School Library Journal: “Through a simple rhyming text, Ryder encourages readers to explore the world around them as she describes some of the creatures found in many parts of the country… The artist's shifting perspectives from eye level to ground and then looking down from above widens the scope for readers' perceptions and adds to the overall effectiveness of the book.”

Author Tidbit: Joanne Ryder is a pro at blending science and poetry. She says her father helped her find the magic in the natural world. She started writing animal stories as a young girl. Joanne enjoys hiking through the woods and by the sea. She studied journalism at Marquette University.

Illustrator Tidbit: Growing up in North Carolina, Keiko Narahashi explored the countryside. She studied art at the Parsons School of Design, and she studied painting at Bard College.

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Author Michelle Meadows blogs about her favorite short and snappy books on the Short & Snappy Happy Book Blog – a resource for teachers, librarians, parents, and other book lovers. To receive blog posts, Subscribe to Michelle's e-newsletter.

#nature #animals #deer #naturewalks

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