B. Author: Eric Rohmann
C. Illustrator: Eric Rohmann
D. Publisher: Roaring Book Press, a division of the Millbrook Press
E. Genre: Picture Book
F. Reading Level: K-1
G. Awards: 2003 Caldecott Medal
H. Summary: My Friend Rabbit is very clever and funny story for beginning readers. The story is a mix between text and picture pages and also just picture pages. The illustrations are done in hand-colored relief prints and are very bright and fun. The background is a pretty blue sky, each character has a thick black outline and detailed features. The narrator is a tiny mouse who has a friend that is a rabbit, and everywhere rabbit goes trouble follows! Rabbit accidently gets their toy airplane stuck high up in a tree, but he has a plan. He stacks an elephant, a rhino, a hippo, a moose, an alligator, a squirell, a bear, and a goose and all her young ones one on top of the other. The plane is still just out of reach so rabbit and mouse climbed up and stretched, and then all of a sudden everything shook and everyone fell. The animals were not happy, but the plane had fell and rabbit was mouse's friend; so the mouse scooped up rabbit in the plane and they flew away. As they were flying away rabbit wanted to hug mouse to show his appreciation but was actually covering his eyes!
I. Response: My Friend Rabbit is a great picture book. It has the thrity-two pages, two-page spreads, and wonderful illustrations. My favorite page is the one where all the animals are looking at him very angry because they had all just fallen down on one another. The expressions, details, and colors are amazing and very vivid. This story is sure to remind kids of an older friend or sibling who is bigger than them and sometimes wild.
J. Teaching Ideas: Scholastic.com has a k-1 lesson plan for mathematics and number sequencing using My Friend Rabbit. It includes making copies of a page for each student, cutting, gluing, and rearranging the animals in certain orders. Lessons dealing with friendship and trouble would be easy to apply. The illustrations would be a lot of fun to try to immitate or make your own using the style. Once you read this book, it's really clear why it won the Cadlecott Medal in 2003. The teacher could also just read this book for fun and enjoyment because the students will definitely love it.