Early Reader Success: Watch Me Throw the Ball

Watch Me Throw the BallWatch Me Throw the Ball!Watch Me Throw the Ball! (An Elephant and Piggie Book) by Mo Willems by Mo Willems

We’re huge Mo Willems fans in this house – especially his picture books featuring the PigeonDon't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! by Mo Willems, Knuffle BunnyKnuffle Bunny Free: An Unexpected Diversion (Knuffle Bunny Series) by Mo Willems, or EdwinaEdwina, The Dinosaur Who Didn't Know She Was Extinct by Mo Willems the dinosaur- they’re all so much fun. I’ve read them over and over and over and still don’t get tired of them, they’re such great books.

It’s no surprise his early reader books are also big hits. My son thinks they’re funny, and they’re short enough that he doesn’t get discouraged and give up before he even starts.

(That’s really his biggest reading problem right now. He can read pretty well, but too much text on a page and he’s convinced he’ll never manage it. He does better with short sentences and paragraphs with a larger font size and plenty of white space around the text blocks.)

The Elephant and Piggie series books are perfect for him right now. Engaging stories, humorous illustrations, and plenty of space on each page so he’s not overwhelmed with text overload.

What he really liked doing with this book was tandem reading with me – he’d read Piggie’s lines, while I’d read Elephant’s. Then we’d immediately switch roles and re-read the book. Reading it that way completely delighted him!

We’re looking for additional titles in this series, as these are so wonderful for early readers. Happily, my library system has lots to choose from so we won’t run out of titles any time soon.

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  1. We love, love, love Mo Willems books at our house, and The Elephant and Piggie books are my son’s favorites. We’ve read almost all of them and have enjoyed every one, but I think my favorites have been “There Is a Bird on Your Head!” and “Can I Play Too?” I especially like how the text sizes and the use of capital letters and italics help him read with inflection. It’s really fun to listen to him read a book so expressively.

    • Yes, you’re so write about the text formatting making it easier for early readers to read with inflection!

      We haven’t gotten to either of those two, so now I’m looking forward to them in particular. So far we’ve just grabbed whichever ones are on the shelf – there’s always been at least one available, but as we read more of them I’ll probably have to start putting specific titles on hold so we can get new-to-us ones.


  1. […] Another Willems, this one is reading practice for my son. It’s as great as the Elephant and Piggie books usually are. […]

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