Perfect Picture Book Friday: BOY + BOT

Astute Creating Curious Kids readers know that I typically review nonfiction books each Friday. However, I was lucky enough to win a copy of Ame Dyckman’s first picture book, BOY + BOT, on Tara Lazar’s blog. After reading our new book to more than 20 children over a couple of days, I knew I had to review it for Perfect Picture Book Friday.
Title: BOY + BOT
Author: Ame Dyckman
Illustrator: Dan Yaccarino
Publication Info: Knopf Books for Young Readers, April 10, 2012
Intended audience: Ages 3 through 5
Genre: picture book
Themes/topics: friendship
Opening and synopsis: ”A boy was collecting pinecones in his wagon when he met a robot.
‘Hi!’ said the boy. ‘Want to play?’
The robot blinked. ‘Affirmative!’”
This is a tale of an unlikely friendship — boy and bot — and how they both care for each other in their own way. When bot’s power switch gets turned off, boy thinks he’s sick. When boy goes to sleep, bot thinks he’s ill. The boy feeds bot applesauce; the bot feed boy oil. The boy reads the bot a story book; bot reads the boy an instruction manual, and so on until both are healed.
Why I like this book: I recently read this book to a preschool class of both boys and girls, and both were captivated. This book’s brief text and bright illustrations –by none other than Dan Yaccarino — are perfect for story times or reading at home over and over again.
Resources: Have children imagine what they would do with a robot friend if they had one. What would they play? How would they make their robot friend feel better if he was sick? Using the story framework, older children could rewrite the story with their own words and images.
Making robots out of cardboard boxes is also fun, though you could also do it with a paper bag. Cut a slit up the center of the box or bag, so it opens like a vest. Cut holes for the head and arms. Decorate with dials, switches and gauges made of cardboard, crayons, marker, etc. You also can make mini recycled robots out of toilet paper rolls and pipe cleaners, which I described in our Earth Day post.
Every Friday bloggers review “Perfect Picture Books.” Find a complete list of book reviews organized by topic, genre and blogger at author Susanna Leonard Hill’s site.

34 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday: BOY + BOT”

  1. Both the story and illustrations look bright and fun. More robots on the list. I need to get through this list. Fun ones today so far. I always appreciate your nonfiction books, but love this one too.

  2. Great choice Kirsten! I’ll have to check this out for my son. The cover looks adorable 🙂

  3. This looks delightful, Kirsten! Thanks for sharing! I’m always amused at how certain themes seem to show up on the PPBF list each week – 3 robot books this week! – isn’t that funny? And I don’t think we’d had one yet up to this point. Also, several imagination books this week. Both wonderful!

    1. And we loved “Robot Zot” thanks to your fabulous recommendation, Clar. Honestly, I think we’ve read just about every Schiezcha book available thanks to you!

  4. Love the robot-kiddies! 😉
    This book sounds funny and the cover makes it look cute (which it probably is)! That’s why people were saying to share your bluprints with me! 🙂

    1. This is definitely a perfect book for preschoolers/toddlers. My almost-kindergartener enjoyed it, but I think it might be a bit young for elementary students, if that helps.

  5. GREAT review, Kirsten! It sounds like a book I should add to my school visit list…friendship is a “skill” young kids need to work on. 🙂 I love the resources and activities you gave…since I do a craft after the story reading, I just might have to “borrow” the cardboard box robot idea. 🙂

    1. You can also use paper bags, which might be easier to work with in a school visit setting. Think Thanksgiving Indian vests. (My kids seem to make these every year.)

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