Leaping into Literature: Animals & Anthropomorphism

The past fortnight saw us once again diving deep into our Leaping into Literature immersion. This fortnight we focused on reading our way through our collection of Animal and Anthropomorphism (attribution of human characteristics & behaviour to animals) picture books. We discovered and re-discovered some real treasures, we also discovered some total duds. When well done, picture books can be wonderful avenues for learning, informative and engaging, and springboards for the imagination, Jack Jack (12) was so inspired by one book he began re-writing plot twists. Yet some picture books can be such a disappointment, the illustrations gorgeous but the text dull, the premise of the book rich with possibility but the deliverance a lecture.


As per our standard practice the children, aged 14, 12, 10, 7 & 4 years have attributed Star ratings to the books, upon consideration of the books’ target age, language, plot, interest and illustrations. Books rated 3 Stars and less were culled as our library is bulging. You can have wonderful books in your library but they may be lost amongst the sheer volume.


Panther Dream: A Story of the African Rainforest – Bob & Wendy Weir 5 Star

Tenrec’s Twigs – Bert Kitchen 4.5 Star

Little Lion – Robert & Zita Newcombe 4 Star

Matemba – Annette Lodge 4 Star

Lion in the Long Grass – Ruth & Ken Brown 4 Star

Little Penguin and his Dad – Matt Wolf 4 Star

Handsome Hog – Mwenye Hadithi 4 Star

Growing Pains – Jenny Stow 4 Star

Tricky Little Hippo – Jane Bowring 3 Star



The Way of the Wolf – Richard Dunqworth 5 Star

Night Gliders – Joanne Ryder 3.5 Star

Baby Bat’s Lullaby – Jacquelyn Mitchard 3.5 Star

In the Pond – Anna Milbourne 3.5 Star


Arctic & Antarctica

Polar Star – Sally Grindley 4.5 Star

Laska the Polar Bear – Derek Hall 4 Star

Artic Song – Miriam Moss 4 Star

Swim Polar Bear, Swim – Joan Stimson 3.5 Star

Artic Dreams – Carole Gerber 3.5 star

There are No Polar Bears Down There – Trish Hart 2.5 Star


Asia & Egypt

Snow Leopards – Nicole Poppenhager 5 Star

Croco’nile – Roy Gerrard 4 Star



The Stone Soup – Helen Bell 5 Star

The Frog and the Pelican – Des O’Brien 4 Star

The Little Yellow Digger Saves the Whale – Bettu & Alan Gilderdale 4 Star


Beavers & Otters

The Beaver Pond – Alvin Tresselt 5 Star

Sam : The Story of an Otter 4.5 Star

Boris Beaver – Marcus Pfister 4 Star



Make Way for Ducklings – Robert McCloskey 5 Star

Three Ducks Went Wandering – Ron Roy 4.5 Star


Entomology & Arachnids

The Adventures of Madalene & Louisa – L & M Pasley 5 Star

A Moth is Born – Herbert Walker 4.5 Star

Zoe’s Webs – Thomas West 4 Star

Spiders Spin Webs – Yvonne Winer 4 Star

The Three Grasshoppers – Francesa Bosca 3.5 Star

Mellie – Isabelle Maquoy 3.5 Star

Web – Rose Inserra 3.5 Star

Deena the Damselfly – Steven Rosman 3 Star


Farm Animals

Emma’s Lamb – Kim Lewis 3.5 Star

One Summer Day – Kim Lewis 3.5 Star

Be Patient, Little Chick  – Claude Clement 3.5 Star

Kitten Finds a Home – Michele Coxon 3 Star

Where’s My Kitten – Michele Coxon 3 Star

Cock A Doodle Doo – Franz Brandenberg  3 Star

Baby Animals – Margaret Wise Brown 2.5 Star



Animality – Ingrid & Dieter Schubert 4 Star

Hello, Baby Badger – Ron Maris 3.5 Star

The Tale of Two Mice – Ruth Brown 3.5 Star

In the Forest – Maurice Pledger 3.5 Star

We Are Bears – Molly Grooms 3 Star

The Icky Sticky Frog 2.5 Star

Hedgehog Howdedo – Lynley Dodd  2 Star

its and bits of nature: A-Z of biodiversity – Janeen Brian 2 Star

I Spy pets – Edward Gibbs 1 Star



Peter’s Place – Sally Grindley 5 Star

Dolphin Boy – Michael Morpurgo 5 Star

Nico’s Octopus 4.5 Star

Coral Trail – Tim & Sue Vyner 4 Star

Fidgety Fish – Ruth Galloway 3 Star



White Owl, Barn Owl – Nicola Davies 5 Star

The Brave Little Owl – Gill Davies 4 Star

Little Owl – Piers Harper 3.5 Star



Tops & Bottoms – Janet Stevens 5 Star

Library Lion – Michelle Knudsen 5 Star

Cock-a-Doodle-Doo – Janet Stevens 5 Star

Delicious : A Pumpkin Soup Story – Helen Cooper 4 Star

The Flood – Nigel Gray 3.5 Star



Bunny My Honey – Anita Jeram 4 Star

Tim Mouse – Judy Brook 4 Star

Tim Mouse and the Major – Judy Brook 4 Star

Little Bear and the Wish Fish – Debi Gliori 4 Star

The Royal Mouse – Carmen McKay 4 Star

The Little Red Hen – Jerry Pinkney 4 Star

The Lonely Scarecrow – Tim Preston 3.5 Star

Feathers for Phoebe – Rod Clement 3.5 star

Snow Bears – Martin Waddell 3.5 Star

If You’re Happy and You Know It! – Jane Cabrera 3.5 Star

The Caterpillar That Roared – Michael Lawrence 3.5 Star

Wake up Bear – Lynley Dodd 3.5 Star

The Scarecrow’s Hat – Ken Brown 3.5 Star

Dilly Dally and the Nine Secrets 3.5 Star

Where is My Mommy? – Julia Downing 3.5 Star

Do Your Ears Hang Low – Top Twins 3.5 Star

Gotcha – Gail Jorgensen 3.5 Star

Two Bears & Joe – Penelope Lively 3.5 Star

Scruffy Bear and the Six White Mice – Chris Wormell 3 Star

Little Bear’s Grandad – Nigel Gray 3 Star

Nathan’s Fishing Trip – Lulu Delacre 3 Star

Old Pig – Margaret Wild 3 Star

For Everyone to Share – Gillian Lobel 3 Star

The Little Island – Golden MacDonald 3 Star

Ten in a Meadow – John Butler 2.5 Star

Why I Love My Mummy – Daniel Howarth 2.5 Star

No More Kisses – Margaret Wild 1 Star

How Do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon – Jane Yolen  1 Star

Snow Moon – Nicholas Brunelle 1 Star

Old Hu-Hu – Kyle Mewburn 0 Star


Hi, I'm Erin, I've been sharing snippets of our Living & Learning since 2006! You'll find here large family logistics, home education, owner building, rural life, book reviews and hundreds of pages with book recommendations we've personally used.

4 thoughts on “Leaping into Literature: Animals & Anthropomorphism

  • November 26, 2018 at 8:22 am

    I have another cull planned this week as well.
    Too often, I’m afraid they can’t find the treasure in the rubbish…

    • January 2, 2019 at 7:26 pm

      Very true, after a cull it’s as if they rediscover old favourites

  • November 27, 2018 at 9:47 am

    Great new layout for your blog 🙂
    You’re certainly getting through the books with them all … a lot more of these were ‘keepers’ as well.

    • January 2, 2019 at 7:27 pm

      Thanks Darlin’ 🙂
      A great feeling to know what’s worth keeping and what’s not. Who knows maybe I’ll cull so many you won’t have to make more book bins 😉


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