May 2 – Brothers and Sisters Day

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About the Holiday

Ah, brothers and sisters! Those built-in friends (and sometime frenemies) that live in your very own house. Sure, siblings like different things, play different games, and see the world differently, but that just broadens our horizons. And as siblings grow up, it’s nice to know there’s always someone out there who shares your history and has your back. Today, cherish your brothers and sisters. Get in touch or do something together—and tell them how much you love them.

Pigs and a Blanket

By James Burks

 

A cute piglet sister and brother love their blankets sooo much and sooooo much more! Henrietta loves the way her blanket smells. Henry loves the way his blanket feels. Henrietta reads with her blanket, while Henry draws under his.

Henry also creates hills in his blanket to zoom his monster trucks over while his sister uses it as a backdrop for the fierce dino movie she’s filming. The movie-making gives way to dancing because Henrietta loves to pirouette with her blanket. But wait a minute! The trucks have just gone off-blanket!! What’s happening?

And—“Hey!”—mid-twirl, that familiar green cloth suddenly becomes a cape catching the wind behind Henry’s superhero personae. One blanket between two kids? Henrietta tugs on one end: “Stop pulling on my blanket!” Henry yanks on the other end: “Stop pulling on MY blanket!!” The tug-of-war rages until “RRRIIIPPPPP!”

Henry retreats to one corner and half-heartedly pushes around his monster trucks on his part of the blanket while glancing over to the other corner where Henrietta has unenthusiastically resumed her movie making on her half. Maybe drawing and reading will be better. But no, not really. That separated blanket isn’t nearly as cozy.

The siblings move a little closer and shyly smile at each other. Maybe they can make up. “I missed you,” Henrietta confesses. “I missed you more,” Henry answers, placing a red checker on the board she’s brought over. The day is brightening in their playroom scattered with toys and art supplies. And as night falls, the two have cleverly reunited just in time for sleeping.

James Burks’ charming Pigs and a Blanket captures perfectly the vacillating relationship of siblings. Kids will recognize and appreciate the sentiments in this simple, honest story. While this sister and brother have separate interests and quarrel over a shared blanket, the truth is they love being together, and when the blanket no longer binds them, they soon realize life is much less rich.

Burks’ illustrations of the piglet siblings are adorable and expressive, registering the fortunes and misfortunes of an afternoon of play with joy, consternation, regret, sadness, and reconciliation. The book’s design makes excellent use of the two-page spreads. The sister plays with her blanket on the left-hand page, while her brother plays with his on the right. The blanket ingeniously disappears into the center of the pages, creating a smart, Ah-ha moment when Henrietta twirls it away from Henry. Likewise, after the blanket is torn apart, the once full-page illustrations are replaced with mostly white space as the two kids play alone and disconnected. As they move to restore their friendship, the white space lessens until it is again filled with love.

Pigs and a Blanket would be a wonderful addition to any child’s bookshelf to be reread at those times when getting along with siblings—or friends—seems hard.

Ages 2 – 6

Disney-Hyperion, 2016 | ISBN 978-1484725238

Brothers and Sisters Day Activity

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Create a Soft Book, Page 2: Peek-a-Boo Blanket

 

A blanket is so much fun! It can be a tent, a reading buddy, a cape, and a perfect hiding place! Add this Peek-a-Boo Blanket with its brother and sister heart to page 2 of your book!

Supplies

  • Printable Peek-a-Boo Blanket Template
  • Adhesive letters or fabric paint
  • Blue, pink, and purple felt – or colors of your choice
  • Fabric glue

celebrate-picture-books-picture-book-review-heart-2

Directions

  1. Cut out one half of the heart from the blue felt
  2. Cut out one half of the heart from the pink felt
  3. Cut out the blanket from the purple felt
  4. Apply the adhesive letters to the top of the page. Make sure the letters are firmly attached if you are using this book with very young children. If needed use fabric glue.
  5. Glue the heart to the page
  6. Glue the top of the blanket to the page so it hides the heart

See you tomorrow! For Page 1 see yesterday’s post!

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