March 16, 2021

A Good Day for Ducks

Written by Jane Whittingham
Illustrated by Noel Tuazon
Pajama Press
978-1-77278-188-5
26 pp.
Ages 1-4
February 2021

From Jane Whittingham and Noel Tuazon, the collaborative duo who brought us Wild One (Pajama Press, 2017), comes a play date on a rainy day that may be A Good Day for Ducks but a great one for young children too.
 
A brother and sister delight in watching the rain from indoors before prepping for their outing into the wet wilds. In simple free verse, Jane Whittingham lets us join the two from indoors to outdoors and back inside.
Getting dressed,
Raincoat, rainboots,
Tug tug, pull pull,
Off we go.
Out they go to jump in puddles, splash down the lane and watch ducks swimming in the pond.
From A Good Day for Ducks by Jane Whittingham, illus. by Noel Tuazon
The ducks "Quack quack, flap flap" and the worms "Wiggle squiggle" before the lightning and thunder come with a "Zig zag, boom bang" and the children hurry home with their mother.

From A Good Day for Ducks by Jane Whittingham, illus. by Noel Tuazon
It's still a good day for ducks as they children get out of their wet things and don cozy outfits and bunny slippers to hop around the room. Finally there's hot cocoa and some painting to remember their outing before they witness the rainbow that culminates their rainy day.
From A Good Day for Ducks by Jane Whittingham, illus. by Noel Tuazon
For very young children who always delight in rainy day play, Jane Whittingham gives words to their amusements. The play is so organic–jumping, watching, feeling, hearing–that Jane Whittingham's repetition of key words, relating to the sounds and actions of the children and the elements of the day, reinforces that simplicity of experience. They "Tug tug, pull pull" on their boots, they "Splish splash, Splish splash" down the lane and are "Waiting, waiting" for their hot drinks to be made. And don't Noel Tuazon's watercolour and ink illustrations just emulate the wetness of the day? There's a fluidity of motion from the children, the rain and nature in general that comes across in Noel Tuazon's lines and shapes that makes the reader feel like they're floating along in the children's ventures. Like the ducklings, we follow along, going with the flow.
From A Good Day for Ducks by Jane Whittingham, illus. by Noel Tuazon
Originally published in 2018, this board book edition of A Good Day for Ducks features "Touch & Feel Raindrops" which your little ones are sure to enjoy, between scoping them out and relishing the sensory feel of their glossy lines. With spring looming and the opportunities for rain across the country inevitable, A Good Day for Ducks will herald more play in the rain and remind us of the value of taking delight in the world around, whether it be wetness from the sky, bunny slippers, hot cocoa, ducks on a pond or mud on a laneway.

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