#137 – Elefanta by Vanita Oelschlager

5 Stars  

An elephant never forgets, or does he?  Elefante is a young elephant who forgets to tie his shoes and then falls down, having tripped over those laces he forgot to tie.  He forgets to clean up his toys and put them where they belong.  His sister tripped over the mess Elefante left with his toys, causing his sister’s fall and torn skirt.  Elefante is a young elephant, and he frequently forgets.

One day, when Elefante forgot to be afraid, he made a friend.  Elephants tend to be shy but Elefante forgot this and got to be a star.  A friend teased him about his big ears, but Elefante forgot all about it and the two played the day away and had great fun.  Elefante needs to be an elephant that never forgets when it comes to those things he should do, but sometimes it is best to forget and take on new challenges, find new friends and keep old ones.

This is a very cute board book for young kids about forgetting.  Most of the time forgetting is not a good thing, but sometimes it can be good to forget.  The book explains this to young children using humor and a wonderful animal known never to forget.  Kids will remember this concept thanks to the adorable pictures in bright colors.  The book has thick pages making it easier for little hands to turn the pages.  The pages will hold-up and not tear when those same little hands excitedly grab hold of the page to turn it to the next.

I like this board book.  The main character is an orange elephant named Elefante.  He is a happy guy that has a problem remembering things, which is sometimes good and other times not.  Elefante makes learning the difference between good forgetting and bad forgetting fun.  When something is fun, kids will remember the concepts much easier.  The author uses situations I think kids will understand and appreciate.

The illustrations, constructed from materials the illustrator found around her home, adding to the green construction of the book.  She challenges kids to find some of those materials.  While this has nothing to do with the theme of forgetting, it does add another dimension to the book and something kids can learn while they find those special items, like the straw used as . . . oops, I cannot tell you this.

I can tell you how much I enjoyed Elefante and I can tell you that I think young children will also enjoy the elephant that often forgets.  Constructed using 98 percent-recycled paper and soy inks, Elefante is an environmentally conscious book.  The illustrations constructed from recycled materials the illustrator found around her home, add to the green theme.  Vanita Books, a socially conscious publisher, donates all of the net profits from all its books, including Elefante, to charity.  Elefante is also available in Spanish.

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Elefante

Author:  Vanita Oelschlager    website
Illustrator:  Kristin Blackwood   website
Publisher:  Vanita Books  website
Release Date:  2011
ISBN: 978-0-9826366-4-0
978-0-9826366-5-7 (Spanish)
Number of Pages: 20
Ages:  0 - 5

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