The Snowy Day

  • Title: The Snowy Day
  • Author: Ezra Jack Keats
  • Illustrator: Ezra Jack Keats
  • Publisher: Viking Penguin
  • Publication year: 1962
  • Brief Summary: From Scholastic: “Wake up with Peter to a snow-covered day where adventure awaits.”
  • Ideas for using this book in classroom or library – Much as I discussed in one of my earlier posts, pre-school and kindergarten age children are learning about the weather in their classes. This is one to add to that discussion of the seasons and about what occurs during each season. And as we discussed in class, this book features as our protagonist a young African American boy named Peter. And as quoted in this article entitled “‘The Snowy Day’: Breaking Color Barriers, Quietly,” from NPR “Peter was among the first non-caricatured African-Americans to be featured in a major children’s book.” I would say this is important to feature along with other older “beloved” picture books from the same time period that may not necessarily have diverse characters. I would also say that this is probably one of the reasons that this book has positively endured all these years.
  • Whatever additional notes you’d like to add about this book and why you liked or didn’t like it. – I believe the simple yet vivid illustrations are relatable to children. What child doesn’t yearn for a day off from school to play in the snow? This simple activity is relatable to all children. And I believe it is the fast moving illustrations of Peter enjoying his snow day that make this still a winner for children.

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