Violet, the dog, innocently drops her tennis ball down a prairie dog’s tunnel, setting off the “fuzz frenzy.” “Boink, thump, rumble, and plunk” is just the beginning of this delightful journey of a fuzzy ball through the land of prairie dogs, filling your child with rich vocabulary and delightful drawings. Bossy Big Bark is the control freak who wants everyone to stay away from the questionable object while Pip Squeak ventures forth for a look. The new found fuzz is stretched, tugged, spiked and twirled into creative hats, belts, rabbit ears and Indian headdresses. Children learn that language is fun when combined in tangles like “fuzz fiesta,” and “fuzz fandangle.” Naturally there is competition over who will get this new green fuzzy treasure and Pip Squeak is mortified that he had started a battle over the fuzz. Big Bark returns, having stolen all the fuzz, only to be plucked up by an eagle in need of a meal. The prairie dogs rally to save one of their own and Big Bark returns in his protective role over the pack.
Children like to match the drawings with the descriptions: “top dog, corny dog and frilly dog.” Take some time to make a list of your child’s descriptive words for Big Bark (bossy, ornery, inconsiderate, impatient) and Pip Squeak (inquisitive, kind, leader). Building good descriptive words will prepare your child for writing interesting stories. Do they have a friend like Big Bark? Or is their friend more like Pip Squeak? One little girl that I read this book to was having a little trouble with a bossy friend. What an opportunity to work through issues with peers.
Before turning the page of The Great Fuzz Frenzy, make a prediction about what is going to happen. Parents try it too and see what a variety of options you come up with. One little boy saw the sky go black and predicted a storm was coming. All guesses are good and encouraged. This helps your child think creatively, expand on stories, and strengthen his language skills.