I've been looking for some more folktales to read/tell in storytime and since Margaret Read MacDonald's version of The Squeaky Door was such a HUGE hit last spring (I bought a copy for my professional collection) I thought I'd look at some of her other folktale adaptations.
This is a simple adaptation of a Latin American folktale, often told as a folksong. Various family members give a small boy a pet - the pets in turn have babies and the count mounts up until he ends up with sixteen pets, all dancing together. This story is probably best told as a song, and a cd is included, but I found the tune difficult to stick in my head. It's also probably best with a guitar, which I don't play. It doesn't help that a man is singing the song, so I have to try to pick up the tune and move it to my voice range.
Verdict: The refrain of "Ay! Ay! Ay!" may sound funny read aloud, but I think this will work well as an interactive story, having the kids counting and naming all the animals.
ISBN: 978-1841487960; Published May 2005 by Barefoot Books (out of print); Borrowed from the library