A Boy Had a Mother Who Bought Him a Hat

What It Is

Moms love to buy things for their children, and this new release is a fun, rhyming tale of a young boy who joyfully accumulates and wears all the items his mom buys him throughout the course of his adventurous days. Starting with the hat woolly and red, the young lad collects a mouse for whom he builds a house, then new shoes with laces for going to places, and so on until he has nearly a dozen items he’s toting around. The boy carries his collection to the beach, grandma’s house, the doctor’s office and many other places and activities. He ends up back home and, after a brisk wind blows his hat away, his mother declares that she’s off to the store to buy him… a new hat!

Why It’s Fun

Karla Kuskin, who’s written more than 50 children’s books, gives us a creative tale that builds with each “gift” mom buys into a fun, rhyming, repetitive recap after the presentation of each item. Kids will join in as the list of items builds, and all can chant together in a verse that is reminiscent of a classic summer camp game. The punch line at the end of the book is a cute twist that will cause listeners to utter a humorous groan. The illustrations are reminiscent of classic children’s picture books and have some fun offbeat “sidebar” items if you look carefully, such as grandma wearing rollerblades while eating dinner.

Who’s Going To Love It

This book is a fun read for all and could easily become a favorite that kids may come back to throughout their childhoods. Rhyming and repetition are great ways to draw kids in simply because they help make a story fun, while at the same time building confidence in early readers. Though the cover art features a winter scene (hard to even think about in the heat of the summer), don’t dismiss it as a “cold weather” book if you see it in the library or bookstore.

Reading Time

About four minutes

Read-It-Again Points

9 out of 10

Book Information

A Boy Had a Mother Who Bought Him a Hat
By: Karla Kuskin, Illustrated by Kevin Hawkes
Published by: Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers (2010)
Approximate retail price: $16.99 (hardcover)
Publisher’s recommended ages: 3 - 8

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