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On the Ball by Brian Pinkney

On the Ball

by Brian Pinkney

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This book tells the story of a little boy who was playing soccer one day, but then took his eye off the ball. The ball then escapes, floating away on an adventure until the boy finally catches it again. ( )
  mmcgowan | Feb 2, 2018 |
Owen is a soccer player, and one day during his game, the ball is kicked off the field, way off into the distance. Owen runs after the ball, following wherever it went. The ball floats across a river, rolls through bushes, and flies through the air, until Owen brings it back to the game. I really like how the illustrations add meaning to the text. As Owen chases the ball through a river, the illustrations show Owen morphing into a fish swimming through the river. When Owen chases the ball through the bushes, the illustrations show that Owen morphs into a tiger running through a forest. As the ball flies through the air, the illustrations show Owen morphing into a bird flying through the air. The illustrations add another dimension to the story, making it more than a boy chasing after a ball.

GENRE: Fantasy Children's Picture Book

MEDIA: watercolor

(1) The illustrations show Owen morphing into a fish, tiger, and a bird, introducing the idea of a simile/metaphor, without using those literary devices. This book could introduce these literary devices, showing that Owen is running fast like a tiger, or flying high like a bird.
(2) Students could create their own smilies/metaphors after a lesson is taught.
(3) A theme in this book is imagination. Owen isn't really a tiger or a fish, but he uses his imagination to transform himself into that animal. Students could discuss the power of imagination and how they can use their imagination into the genre of fantasy. The class could also discuss what makes a fantasy book.
(4) This book could be used to teach an essential literacy strategy mini-lesson about looking at pictures to help comprehension. ( )
  akgingerich | Oct 18, 2016 |
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"Owen loves soccer, but isn't the best at playing it. After a particularly disastrous day on the field, Owen is benched. He is feeling so low that he doesn't notice the ball rolling away from him until it's too late. In his effort to get it back, he discovers that he has more skills than he realizes"--… (more)

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