Picture Book Recommendation: TOGETHER AT CHRISTMAS

Cover of Together at ChristmasWhen you think of Christmas, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?

Rodents, of course!

Ok, at first, it may not seem like rodents and Christmas go together, but as you’ll see from this story and the craft resources below, mice and Christmas do go together. In fact, mice make tasty Christmas treats. Chocolate mice. Not the mice in the story. Which would not make tasty Christmas treats. Well, my cat might think they would, but that’s another story.

“Ten little mice huddled in the snow on Christmas Eve.”

In Together at Christmas, Eileen Spinelli creates a snuggly, heart-warming book, with cold little mice huddled together for warmth. As the night goes on, one by one, the mice wander off in search of warmer surroundings, ultimately deciding that they’d rather be together than warm. There’s no religious message or mention of gifts, just a few Christmas symbols worked in at the end of this gentle tale. The mice are barely anthropomorphized at the beginning and gradually assume more human-like manners as the story progresses.

“One mouse notices a puff–
a gentle burst of cattail fluff.
Quick! Before it starts to float,
he weaves himself an overcoat.”

Just like a coat made of cattail fluff the illustrations are soft, with the mice having a warmer hue than their icy surroundings. While children will encounter some basic counting, and a moral about the importance of friendship, this tale is too cozy for a preschool classroom. However, Together at Christmas is a soothing story suitable for families with young children.

Overall, a great bedtime read for the cold winter months.

Themes:

Mice, Animals, Winter, Friendship, Holidays, Christmas, Rhyming Books, Counting

Resources:

Make these super-cute Candy Cane Christmas Mice from Mom on Timeout.

Here are some even cuter Hershey Kiss Christmas Mice from Designs that Inspire to Create Your Perfect Home.

Get the whole family involved in making Candy Christmas Mice using Midwest Living’s YouTube video as a guide.

Education World has several generic Holiday Lesson Plans that you can use in a classroom.

Perfect Picture Book List on Susanna Leonard Hill’s Blog

Bibliographic Info:

Title: Together at Christmas
Author: Eileen Spinelli
Illustrator: Bin Lee
Hardcover: 24 pages
Publisher: Albert Whitman & Company (August 1, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0807580104
ISBN-13: 978-0807580103

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