What with the Queen’s Jubilee and the Summer Olympics, Great Britain has been riding high this year. That’s a perfect excuse to share one of my favorite books by the United Kingdom’s current Children’s Laureate, Julia Donaldson.
In Room on the Broom, Donaldson’s characteristic nimble verse sweeps the reader along for a journey on the broomstick of a kindly—if somewhat clumsy—witch, who keeps losing things in mid-air. During repeated trips back to the ground, a dog, a bird and a frog help the witch find her lost items, and each, in turn, hitches a ride as the broom “whooshes” back into the stormy sky. Danger awaits them, but the witch’s new friends turn out to be both brave and quick-witted.
This is a delightful audience-participation book, because the kids can join in each time the witch orders, “Down!” to her broom, and each time the friends “Whoosh!” back into the sky. It isn’t a Halloween story, but works nicely for that holiday. Axel Scheffler’s illustrations are expressive, funny and easy to see from the back of the room.
Check the WRL catalog for Room on the Broom.