Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Doing & Learning
Let's Clap, Jump, Sing & Shout; Dance, Spin & Turn it Out!

Let's Clap, Jump, Sing & Shout; Dance, Spin & Turn it Out!

Fall 2017 Doing & Learning
Ages: All Ages
Author: Patricia C. McKissack
Illustrator: Brian Pinkney
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 9780375870880
Hardcover Price: $24.99

Subtitled "Games, Songs & Stories from an African American Childhood," this vibrant collection of clapping games, jump rope rhymes, spirituals, fables, proverbs, poems, superstitions, and stories is a treasure trove. Collected and curated by renowned Newbery Honor author Patricia C. McKissack, and illustrated by acclaimed artist Brian Pinkney, a Caldecott Honor-winner, the content of this beautifully designed hardcover book is arranged in such sections as "Shake Yo' Body," "Follow the Drinking Gourd" and "On the Porch or By the Fire." Offerings range from "Patty-Cake" and "Mary Mack" to the parable of "The Prodigal Son," poems by Paul Laurence Dunbar and Langston Hughes, and the coded songs slaves used as a tool for safe communication. Pinkney's watercolor-and-ink illustrations fairly dance and swirl through the pages, reflecting both the exuberance of play and McKissack's graceful framework for the collection: her fascinating narrative, rich with historic, cultural, and literary source material, and the memories of her own Southern childhood. Adults will find as much to enjoy as children; McKissack offers further exploration in a chapter-by-chapter "Notes" section and bibliography.

Lynne Heffley   ©2017 Parents' Choice
A freelance writer and editor for the arts and non-profit organizations, Lynne is a former staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, where she established the paper's first weekly children's arts and entertainment beat.

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