Grandmother Ptarmigan

by Qaunaq Mikkigak, Joanne Schwartz, and Qin Leng

When a little ptarmigan who won't go to sleep asks his grandma for a story, she finally... read more

When a little ptarmigan who won't go to sleep asks his grandma for a story, she finally indulges him with a brief tale of cold little lemmings who want to get warm. "They want to crawl up your back, under your armpits, around your neck." And she tickles him. The little ptarmigan jumps up in fright, flapping his wings so hard he flies for the very first time. "And that is why baby ptarmigans fly so young." The fresh, alluring storytelling in this Inuit tale features repetition and wonderful word choice. The illustrations offer a counterpoint to the narrative in which the baby ptarmigan is frightened and flies away, leaving the grandmother to lament ("Nauk Nauk"). He's never too far from her and, in one of the final images, is shown happily tucked into his nest. (Ages 2-4)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2014

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