Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Everywhere the Cow Says "Moo!"
by Ellen Slusky Weinstein
illustrated by Kenneth Andersson
Boyds Mills Press, 2008
Review copy compliments of the publisher

One of the indicators in our 5th grade social studies standard about immigration says that students should be able to identify the lasting effects of the English, Spanish and French in the U.S.. I know that standard so intimately because Karen and I wrote an immigration unit a couple of summers ago.

So I get this book in the mail and I open it up.
"In English, the dog says, 'Bow-wow bow-wow!'
In Spanish, the dog says, 'Goo-ow, goo-ow!'
In French, the dog says, 'Wah-wah, wah-wah!'
In Japanese, the dog says, 'Wan-wan, wan-wan!'
But everywhere, the cow says, 'Moo!' "

How could my Integration Radar not go up?!?!

The pattern in the book repeats for what the frog, duck, and rooster say. You guessed it. Everywhere the cow says, "Moo."

The best part are the illustrations. The English dog surprises a Beefeater, the Spanish dog defies a bullfighter, the French dog serenades the Eiffel Tower, and the Japanese dog sits beneath a cherry tree. In each illustration is something iconic from that culture. Including architecture.

You don't have to love this book because it's perfect for your social studies unit. There are plenty of reasons to simply love this book.

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Edited to add: Monica at Educating Alice has a great connection to this book -- a website where you can hear kids from around the world imitating the sounds of animals! Check out her post and then go listen!!!


  1. I love that you are getting all these courtesy copies of books and then sharing the wealth with us!
    Thanks so much for letting me know about the review and the link! Both are great! Another book for my "have to get" list!

  2. Anonymous6:07 AM

    Oooh! I have to get this before our immigration unit ends on the 31st. THANKS for the tip!!!

  3. Lots of animal-related associations are also different across countries. With the last name "Hahn", which means "rooster" (or more broadly, "chicken"), I sometimes joke (admittedly lame) that I hope my ancestors were farmers and not soldiers. However, this is meaningless in Italy, where cowardice is associated with rabbits, not chickens.

  4. I've heard that other countries represent animal sounds in different ways, but I've never heard about how universal "Moooo" is. Cool. Love the link too. Thanks for sharing.


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