Sunday, June 20, 2021

I Did It My Way! Sam's First Wordby Bea Birdsong



Sam is already quite accomplished. She can wave her arms when her dog Farnsworth tries to get her food. She can clap her hands when Farnsworth does tricks. And she can remove her diaper and make a giggling getaway in the "altogether." Her whole family smiles every time she shows off her new skills. But there is one thing they just can't wait for her to perform. . . .


Mama wants it to be MAMA! Papa wants it to be PAPA. Nana wanted it to be NANA! Even the next-door neighbor, Mr. Theotopholous, wants it to be his name! They all make up songs with one-word lyrics--their names.

But Sam has other concerns! She says. . .


Nobody pays any attention to Sam, as they set out to push their own names. Mama sings a song with "Mama" as the only lyric; Papa reads a story in which the only words are his name. Nana does her own show-and-tell, even painting NANA on the wall. Sam waves her arms, claps her hands, and points at her diapered bottom!


While everyone continues pressing the case for their own names, Sam decides it's time to up the ante on this presentation. She takes off her smelly diaper, and while Farnsworth covers his nose, waves the offending garment in front of them, and makes an announcement!


Everyone smiles when they realize they've just heard Sam's first word, in Bea Birdsong's jolly new story, Sam's First Word (Little, Brown and Company, 2021). Any picture book in which the punch line is POOP will have primary kids rolling on the rug in giggles and repeating that popular word themselves. Hollie Hatam's charming pictures of this piquant toddler's first venture into speech makes for a good read-aloud, although it is recommended that this one be the final book of the session!

Quips Kirkus Reviews, "Cheeky... fresh, fun, and funny."

Pair this one with Jimmy Fallon's Your Baby's First Word Will Be DADA (see review here).

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