How did I miss Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons, written by Eric Litwin and illustrated by James Dean, when it debuted in May? The reason I missed it will forever remain unclear, but the reason I learned about it today is one for which I’m thankful!
One of my dearest college friends came to New York for a few days with her family. Seeing as I haven’t seen her in three years, I made a special trip into the NY Metropolitan Area this week with Isabelle so we could spend some time with them. Together, we have three kids between us so we opted to spend a couple of hours at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, or CMOM. The kids loved CMOM, which has a special play space for kids under the age of four. This was perfect since our daughters are nine months apart from each other in age.
At 11:30 a.m., two staff members gathered interested children and adults together in a part of the play space for circle time, which included some singing and read alouds. We sang the ABC Song, Itsy Bitsy Spider, and Open and Shut Them. Then, one of the CMOM staff members pulled out Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons. She read this book with gusto. Her voice engaged the children as she sang Pete’s song as each button popped off of his shirt. I found myself joining in since the book’s repetition lends itself to group participation. Isabelle was engaged during the entire read aloud, looking at the pictures as still as a statue in my lap (which was shocking considering she was incredibly active both before and after the circle time). By the time the staff member finished reading the book aloud in the way I bet the author intended for it to be read, I knew I had to order it so Isabelle and I can enjoy it again and again. The upbeat message of the book, the inclusion of subtraction, and the neat little song makes this book a gem!