Clothesline Clues to Jobs People Do
Kathryn Heling & Deborah Hembrook, authors
Kathryn Heling and Deborah Hembrook have co-authored several books for children, including I Wish I Had Glasses Like Rosa and Mouse Makes Words: A Phonics Reader. Kathryn and Deborah both live in Wisconsin.
Read more about Kathryn & Deborah.
Andy Robert Davies, illustrator
Andy Robert Davies is a professional UK based Illustrator working for clients around the world. His artwork has been used in an editorial context by the Independent on Sunday and Guardian newspapers, in viral marketing campaigns for Vodafone, and for several successful book titles. His first children's book Truck Stuck has won a number of awards and plaudits from respected sources in the USA and has recently been published in Korea.
Read more about Andy.
- Bank Street College of Education's Best Children's Books of the Year
Heling and Hembrook's clever conceit challenges children to analyze a small town's clotheslines to guess the job each of their owners does.
Close-up on the clothesline: "Uniform and cap, / an invite for you. / Big bag of letters. / What job does she do?" A turn of the page reveals a macro view of the home, van and the woman doing her job, "She is a mail carrier." Indeed, she can be spotted throughout the book delivering invitations to all the rest of the characters, who gather at the end for a "Launch Party." The verses' rhymes are spot-on, though the rhythm falters a couple of times. The authors nicely mix up the gender stereotypes often associated with several of these occupations, making the carpenter, firefighter and astronaut women. But while Davies keeps uniforms and props pretty neutral (he even avoids U.S. mail symbols), he keeps to the stereotypes that allow young readers to easily identify occupations--the farmer chews on a stalk of wheat; the beret-wearing artist sports a curly mustache. A subdued palette and plain white backgrounds keep kids' focus on the clothing clues. Still, there are plenty of details to absorb--the cat with arched back that anticipates a spray of water, the firefighter who "lights" the rocket.
Pair this with Leo Timmers' Who Is Driving? (2007) for twice the guessing fun.
School Library Journal
Children will be thinking about what job they would like to have after meeting the friendly workers in this picture book. Seven people have uniforms drying on their clotheslines. On one spread, a paint-stained shirt hangs next to a beret. On another, coveralls and gloves hang above a scattering of tools, and, in another, a long hose is draped over the line supporting a pair of suspenders and heavy pants. After the clothing and equipment are identified in two short rhyming sentences, children are asked to guess the job each man or woman holds. The answer is revealed when readers turn the page and see the worker in the uniform and using the tools. At the end of the book, the characters come together for a "Launch Party" for the astronaut. This ending will come as no surprise to children who noticed the busy mail carrier. Full-spread illustrations (digitally manipulated pencil and mixed-media drawings) depict happy, productive people working indoors and out. An assortment of birds and an inquisitive cat add interest to the pages.
ISBN: 978-1-60734-574-9 EPUB
ISBN: 978-1-60734-447-6 PDF
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Page count: 40
9 x 9