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The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf

The Story of Ferdinand (1936)

by Munro Leaf, Munro Leaf

Other authors: Robert Lawson (Illustrator)

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3,374971,611 (4.38)42
  1. 30
    The Right To Be Lazy by Paul Lafargue (lquilter)
    lquilter: If you like "The Right To Be Lazy", perhaps you would enjoy reading to your children (and for yourself), "The Story of Ferdinand", by Munro Leaf -- a children's picture book about a bull who doesn't want to fight, but just wants to sit under a tree and enjoy nature. If you liked reading Ferdinand to your kids, maybe you'd also like spending some time with the classic pro-relaxation theoretical work of Lafargue, who argues that relaxation and creativity, not work, are the true engines of human development. Down with the corporate-capitalist-entertainment complex! Up with the enjoyment of life, bread, and roses!… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 97 (next | show all)
Ferdinand, a historical fiction picture book, is a delicate and sweet story that takes place in Spain. A young bull named Ferdinand finds himself to be different from the other young bulls. While they all like to run and jump and butt heads, Ferdinand would rather smell the flowers and sit under his favorite tree. One day, some men from the Madrid bullfights discover Ferdinand, and delighted with his large size and casual attitude, they take him to the arena where he is expected to fight and run and butt heads. Instead, Ferdinand proves to be the same light hearted bull and in the end, finds himself smelling the flowers instead of fighting. The theme of this book revolves around the idea that it is okay to be different, or even just to stop and smell the flowers. Ferdinand surprises the readers and teaches them a silly, historical tale that could be useful for any 1st-2nd grade classroom! ( )
  EllieCoe | Oct 5, 2015 |
This is a book about a little bull who was gentle. All he wanted to do is sit and smell flowers under his tree. He didn't want to play with the other bulls. Ferdinand became big and strong. The other bulls wanted to be in the big bull fight but not Ferdinand. 5 men came to watch the other bulls try out. Ferdinand was at his tree smelling flowers and started to sit down and was stung by a bee. He jumped around and snorted so the men chose him to be in the fight. He arrived at the arena and watched as they brought in all the swords and the matador to fight him. The matadors were scared of him because the men called him Ferdinand the Fierce. When Ferdinand saw the flowers in the women's hair he just sat in the middle of the arena and smelled. He wouldn't fight. They took him home because he wasn't fierce.

I like this book. The reason is it is a cute little story that tells how we can judge a book by it's cover and be totally mistaken.

How I would extend this story is for one talk about the culture. It is Spanish in nature. I would also talk about what would you do if you were stung by a bee? Also I would have the kids draw a picture of Ferdinand. ( )
  LizaK | Sep 5, 2015 |
This has always been one of my most fave books as a kid. The story is simple to read and easy for a beginning reader although they may need some help with the Spanish bull fighter terminology.

The pictures are black and white but very detailed. You can actually feel that you are looking into a pasture or an arena to see what it is like without actually being there.

The message is a wonderful message of just being yourself even when others wish you to be what you aren't. My main problem with this book is of course the whole bull fighting history but I am not going to allow that ruin this sweet book. ( )
  flamingrosedrakon | Aug 26, 2015 |
The story of ferdinand is one of serenity and how this one calm bull gets picked to find the matadors and he doesn't want to so he gets taken home. ( )
  lbradf4 | May 12, 2015 |
Summary: Oh Ferdinand! He is not like any of the other bulls, but that is how he likes it. He enjoys the shade tree and smelling flowers. Until one bee sting sends him into a rage! At quite the wrong moment as Ferdinand is then mistaken for a fierce fighting bull. Even in the ring, he never strays from his true self.

Personal Reaction: This story reminds me of playing t-ball, where I would often find myself drawing in the dirt or watching the butterflies. No matter how intense the game got, if I was on defense, I was on butterfly patrol. I feel this story is very relatable and fun.

Classroom Extension: This story talks an awful lot about smelling the flowers. Given good weather, this could extend to a great nature day. Students could wrap up their experience by describing their senses.
  KaitlynBlevins | May 5, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 97 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Munro Leafprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Leaf, Munromain authorall editionsconfirmed
Lawson, RobertIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Once upon a time in Spain there was a little bull and his name was Ferdinand.
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Book description
Their so much learning that can be brought into the classroom with this story. This story presents a story of peace and difference. It also introduces the history of bullfighting.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0670674249, Hardcover)

What else can be said about the fabulous Ferdinand? Published more than 50 years ago (and one of the bestselling children's books of all time), this simple story of peace and contentment has withstood the test of many generations. Ferdinand is a little bull who much prefers sitting quietly under a cork tree-- just smelling the flowers--to jumping around, snorting, and butting heads with other bulls. This cow is no coward--he simply has his pacifist priorities clear. As Ferdinand grows big and strong, his temperament remains mellow, until the day he meets with the wrong end of a bee. In a show of bovine irony, the one day Ferdinand is most definitely not sitting quietly under the cork tree (due to a frightful sting), is the selfsame day that five men come to choose the "biggest, fastest, roughest bull" for the bullfights in Madrid.

Ferdinand's day in the arena gives readers not only an education in the historical tradition of bullfighting, but also a lesson in nonviolent tranquility. Robert Lawson's black-and-white drawings are evocative and detailed, with especially sweet renditions of Ferdinand, the serene bull hero. The Story of Ferdinand closes with one of the happiest endings in the history of happy endings--readers of all ages will drift off to a peaceful sleep, dreaming of sweet-smelling flowers and contented cows.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:32 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

Ferdinand likes to sit quietly and smell the flowers, but one day he gets stung by a bee and his snorting and stomping convince everyone that he is the fiercest of bulls.

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