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Conejito: A Folktale from Panama

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An all-star author-illustrator team delivers a timeless story about finding love and acceptance.


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An all-star author-illustrator team delivers a timeless story about finding love and acceptance.

30 review for Conejito: A Folktale from Panama

  1. 5 out of 5

    Cristina

    Age: 6 Grade: 1st Genre: folktale Conejito is a great book with impressively loooooonnnngggggg illustrations! Students are sure to be engaged with the drawn-out bunny ears and sporadic Spanish words thrown in here and there throughout the story. I was introduced to this folktale through my librarian and was intrigued by it due to its Spanish appearance and illustrations. Students can read this book to discover that it is important to eat fruit and vegetables in order to be “Strong, Strong, Strong! Age: 6 Grade: 1st Genre: folktale Conejito is a great book with impressively loooooonnnngggggg illustrations! Students are sure to be engaged with the drawn-out bunny ears and sporadic Spanish words thrown in here and there throughout the story. I was introduced to this folktale through my librarian and was intrigued by it due to its Spanish appearance and illustrations. Students can read this book to discover that it is important to eat fruit and vegetables in order to be “Strong, Strong, Strong!” and that even when bullies have made their appearance and said some things, they have no power over you as long as you stay… in a bin? Well, you must read to find out! I would use this story to teach my students about themes in a story and have them write down the life-lessons that they learned through reading this story.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Wes Solether

    While the structure of the book sounds familiar, animal has to outsmart the other animals to avoid getting eaten, I was genuinely surprised how fresh it felt. I love the idea that, to avoid the creatures that want to eat him, Conejito gets pushed in a barrel down the mountain (not recommended!). I love the inclusion of songs with notes and poems/songs to use with young kids. It felt multimedia-ish while preserving the traditional folklore of the story. I can't speak to how it adapted the Panama While the structure of the book sounds familiar, animal has to outsmart the other animals to avoid getting eaten, I was genuinely surprised how fresh it felt. I love the idea that, to avoid the creatures that want to eat him, Conejito gets pushed in a barrel down the mountain (not recommended!). I love the inclusion of songs with notes and poems/songs to use with young kids. It felt multimedia-ish while preserving the traditional folklore of the story. I can't speak to how it adapted the Panama folktale, but that would be interesting to look up. I'm curious if it felt authentic to people from Panama, if that makes sense.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Since the story takes place in Panama and uses animals that are native to the country, it does provide some sense of the area in South America. This is a fun book to read to young children. The text offers rhythm and rhyme. It has a catchy repeated phrase about Tia Monica. The book does have a distinct problem as Conejito tries to evade the menacing animals and the suspense of Conejito getting to Tia Monica’s is exciting to the young readers. The pictures are bright and colorful. I love that it Since the story takes place in Panama and uses animals that are native to the country, it does provide some sense of the area in South America. This is a fun book to read to young children. The text offers rhythm and rhyme. It has a catchy repeated phrase about Tia Monica. The book does have a distinct problem as Conejito tries to evade the menacing animals and the suspense of Conejito getting to Tia Monica’s is exciting to the young readers. The pictures are bright and colorful. I love that it has Spanish words in it. The text is a bit wordy, but there is audio that you can find online.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    This is the retelling of a folktale about a little rabbit on his way to visit his Tía Monica. On his way, he meets different animals who plan to make a meal of him, but he convinces them that he is too skinny, and that he will be much more filling on his way back, after his aunt has fattened him up. The author includes Spanish words to enhance the story, and the traditional song Tía Monica is repeated throughout the story.

  5. 4 out of 5

    mg

    Super cute, if a bit lengthy.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    My seven-year-old was telling me about this book they are reading in his Spanish class. He was so excited to read it with me at home. It is rhyming story, a happy read.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Kest Schwartzman

    the illustrations in this are stellar

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Nobody died in the end, so it was a good book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Justine

    Title: Conejito: A Folktale from Panama Author: Margaret Read MacDonald Illustrator: Geraldo Valerio Genre: Non-European Folktale Theme(s): Family, Folklore, Journey, Persuasion Opening line/sentence: “One day, Mama bunny told little bunny, Conejito, ‘Conejito my little bunny, it is vacation time..’” Brief Book Summary: Conejito is a Panama folktale about a bunny named Conejito who journeys to his aunt’s house, but runs into the fox. With his cunning ways, Conejito persuades the fox not to eat him. Pr Title: Conejito: A Folktale from Panama Author: Margaret Read MacDonald Illustrator: Geraldo Valerio Genre: Non-European Folktale Theme(s): Family, Folklore, Journey, Persuasion Opening line/sentence: “One day, Mama bunny told little bunny, Conejito, ‘Conejito my little bunny, it is vacation time..’” Brief Book Summary: Conejito is a Panama folktale about a bunny named Conejito who journeys to his aunt’s house, but runs into the fox. With his cunning ways, Conejito persuades the fox not to eat him. Professional Recommendation/Review #1: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz (Children's Literature) During his vacation, Little Bunny’s mother sends him up the mountain to his aunt Monica, who will feed him until he is Gordito, Fat! As he is running along, singing a song about his dancing auntie, Ooo la la! he runs into Se or Zorro, Mr. Fox. He persuades Mr. Fox to wait until he returns, fat, to eat him. The same thing happens when he encounters Se or Tigre, Mr. Tiger, and Se or Lo, Mr. Lion. Monica does feed him enough cakes and cookies to make him fat. But she also feeds him fruits and vegetables to make him strong. When the time comes for Conejito, Little Rabbit, to go home, she plots with him for his safe return so he and his mother can dance and sing together. The words and music are included. Although the end pages describe a decorative jungle complete with animal life, the scenes of the story are set on a treeless plain. Valerio fills this space with his painted characters created in somewhat abstracted naturalism. The rabbits in particular have very large ears and elongated heads. All the creatures are sinuous as they wrap around Conejito; a variety of birds and snakes occupy the edges of the double pages. A note gives the source of the story; the included Spanish words are easily understood in context and are listed with pronunciation. Parallels with other folktales are obvious. Professional Recommendation/Review #2: Kathie M. Josephs (Children's Literature) This book is an amusing folktale from Panama that will be enjoyed by children everywhere. Conejito is a small bunny that is being sent to visit his aunt high in the mountain. While he is there he is to eat her cakes and cookies so he will become, Fat! Fat! Fat! On this journey Conejito runs into a fox, a tiger, and a lion. Each of these animals wants to eat him for lunch, but Conejito convinces them that he is skinny now and that they should wait until he comes down the mountain, fat. Each agrees and Conejito continues his journey until he finally reaches his aunt’s home. Children will delight at learning how Conejito outsmarts the fox, lion, and tiger on his way home to his mother. The story has great illustrations that are colorful, fun, and exaggerated. In the corners of the pages, the illustrator has included three small jungle inhabitants that have nothing to do with the story, but seem to be following Conejito on his trip. I found them absolutely delightful, plus they add extra interest to the pictures. The author has included a pronunciation key at the end of the book. This picture book can easily be read aloud as well as read alone by an early reader. This folktale will be enjoyed by both boys and girls and would make a wonderful gift. Response to Two Professional Reviews: I agree that the illustrations definitely bring the story to life. As Kathie M. Josephs states, the illustrations are “colorful, fun, and exaggerated” to bring attention the the characters. They were somewhat abstract. Both reviews only praised the illustrations and did not mention much about the text or what it has to offer to the readers. Evaluation of Literary Elements: The book did a great job of incorporating Spanish and English together. By using one language and putting the word in the other language right after it, young readers can see the two languages side by side, making it easier to absorb. Definitely kills two birds with one stone. Consideration of Instructional Application: I found this book’s plot to be very similar to “Little Red Ridding Hood.” For my activity, I would have my students compare two stories and create a venn diagram in groups of 4. After each group had time to brainstorm, I would write everyone’s ideas on a bigger venn diagram to display on the wall.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Lizeth Velazquez

    MacDonald, Margaret Read. Conejito. A Folktale from Panama. Little Rock: August House LittleFolk, 2006. Characters: Conejito (Bunny), his mother, his tia Monica (aunt), Mr. Fox, Mr. Tiger, and Mr. Lion. Setting: woods, and aunt Monica's house Theme: Outsmarting larger and fierce animals Genre: Folktale, cumulative tale, trickster Plot/Summary: This charming folktale from Panama is about a Conejito and his tia Monica outwitting Senor Zorro, Senor Tigre, and Senor Leon. This folktale is interlaced with MacDonald, Margaret Read. Conejito. A Folktale from Panama. Little Rock: August House LittleFolk, 2006. Characters: Conejito (Bunny), his mother, his tia Monica (aunt), Mr. Fox, Mr. Tiger, and Mr. Lion. Setting: woods, and aunt Monica's house Theme: Outsmarting larger and fierce animals Genre: Folktale, cumulative tale, trickster Plot/Summary: This charming folktale from Panama is about a Conejito and his tia Monica outwitting Senor Zorro, Senor Tigre, and Senor Leon. This folktale is interlaced with spanish words for animals, actions, and adjectives. As Conejito tries to walk to his aunt Monica's house through the woods, he encounters hungry Mr. Fox, Tiger, and Lion. Conejito is able to wittingly tell them to wait because he is flaquito, flaquito, flaquito (skinny) and to wait when he returns gordito, gordito, gordito (fat) from eating so much at his aunt Monica's house. Conejito's aunt Monica helps him return home safe by devising and clever plan. All they need is a barrel and smoke, smoke, smoke. Target Audience: Grade: k-3 Personal/Critical response: This folktale would capture the attention of young children because of the repetitions in three's of spanish and respective english words. This gives a melodic effective and as a read aloud can be very interactive with the audience. I liked how Conejito was quick to think and problem solve in his predicament, which is what could be further discussed and highlighted with students.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Hmarkzon

    Conejitoo is a great folktale book, and I cannot wait to read it to children. The first characteristic that I like about the story, is that is includes Spanish. Spanish is rapidly growing and spreading into a very popular conversation language. I think it is wise to incorporate Spanish into the lesson plans as young as first or second grade, and a requirement for courses to take in college. Also, Conejito teaches several lessons that benefit young children’s learning like when Conejito visits h Conejitoo is a great folktale book, and I cannot wait to read it to children. The first characteristic that I like about the story, is that is includes Spanish. Spanish is rapidly growing and spreading into a very popular conversation language. I think it is wise to incorporate Spanish into the lesson plans as young as first or second grade, and a requirement for courses to take in college. Also, Conejito teaches several lessons that benefit young children’s learning like when Conejito visits his Tia, and she tells him that she will feed him lots of sweets, but lots of fruits and vegetable to become strong. Also, there is a lesson that you should not let bullies become inferior. I can think of so many ways to incorporate this story into a lesson plan for a good week.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Michaela Zavala

    The book was alright, very repetitive. It is good for early readers who come from a spanish and english speaking background. Conejito is a rabbit who goes and visits his aunt and runs into predators and has to trick them into not eating him. This book has a small message, that you can eat lots of junk foods like cookies and cake. But a child needs to eat healthy, such as drink water and eat fruits and veggies to grow up and be strong. It is a cute story and has a good moral of eating healthy and The book was alright, very repetitive. It is good for early readers who come from a spanish and english speaking background. Conejito is a rabbit who goes and visits his aunt and runs into predators and has to trick them into not eating him. This book has a small message, that you can eat lots of junk foods like cookies and cake. But a child needs to eat healthy, such as drink water and eat fruits and veggies to grow up and be strong. It is a cute story and has a good moral of eating healthy and being smart to get out of bad situations. I believe it is a good story for children to read around the ages of four to six.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tyler Jones

    This is a great story time book for kids who are about five or six. The kids find the Tia Monica song hilarious and will soon be joining in on the "ooh la la" part and the "gordito, gordito, gordito!" part. Of course the more you can ham it up the better! The big folk-arty illustrations also work well in large groups of kids. Silly in the best way and the kids enjoy learning a few Spanish words too. This is a great story time book for kids who are about five or six. The kids find the Tia Monica song hilarious and will soon be joining in on the "ooh la la" part and the "gordito, gordito, gordito!" part. Of course the more you can ham it up the better! The big folk-arty illustrations also work well in large groups of kids. Silly in the best way and the kids enjoy learning a few Spanish words too.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Mary Thomas

    We actually haven't read the picture book, but my boys fell in love with the story when we got the audiobook Summer 2018. This is their most-requested story from the CD. So catchy and fun! #cbad response - We listened to the audiobook and followed along. It was a great example of oral storytelling and how the storyteller can change bits of the story. They didn't enjoy it as much as my boys and I do, though. #cbad 2018-2019 - 5th grade SCA - 9/4/18 - average rating 3.9 We actually haven't read the picture book, but my boys fell in love with the story when we got the audiobook Summer 2018. This is their most-requested story from the CD. So catchy and fun! #cbad response - We listened to the audiobook and followed along. It was a great example of oral storytelling and how the storyteller can change bits of the story. They didn't enjoy it as much as my boys and I do, though. #cbad 2018-2019 - 5th grade SCA - 9/4/18 - average rating 3.9

  15. 5 out of 5

    Kate Hastings

    Wonderful Latino tale about a little rabbit on his way to visit his aunt. On the way he runs into 3 predators, but convinces them not to eat him until AFTER he visits his aunt, who will make him big and fat. His aunt devises a plan to get him home safely. Cute tale, I will be making it into a puppet show for the library this weekend. CUTE!!!

  16. 4 out of 5

    A.J. Culey

    This book is simply beautiful. The rhythm of the language and the illustrious are particularly wonderful. Always a favorite in my 2nd grade classroom (especially as I teach in a highly diverse area), the bilingual nature of the book was particularly appealing to my students as it reflects their reality.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Katie Scherrer

    Definitely fun for storytime! Good for movement themes or to use with other folktales from Latin America. Easy to get the kids repeating "Gordito, gordito, gordito!" Try pairing up with Jose-Luis Orozco's version of "Tia Monica" on his CD Diez Deditos! Definitely fun for storytime! Good for movement themes or to use with other folktales from Latin America. Easy to get the kids repeating "Gordito, gordito, gordito!" Try pairing up with Jose-Luis Orozco's version of "Tia Monica" on his CD Diez Deditos!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Mayra Velazquez

    This is a fun and short folktale story that deals with Conejito. Although he is smaller than his friends/ bullies he overcomes them regardless of his size. This is a great book for students to understand that they can overcome anything.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Lupine

    Great version of a folk tale -- perfect for reading aloud. Lots of repetion and Spanish words (including pronunciation guide in back) and very cute. Another winner by MacDonald!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Emma

    Conejito is taking a trip to see his Tia Monica but meets a fox, a tiger, and a lion on his way. Bilingual. This would make a good flannel board.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Mckinley

    Like the tale but not the illustrations.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Peacegal

    The psychedelic illustrations were a highlight!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Beverly

    Humorous, fun folktale with exaggerated caricatures of animals; very colorful artwork.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    Reminded me a bit of Brer Rabbit! Very fun book, great way to incorporate spanish and english.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Renee Brown

    Margaret Mead MacDonald's folktale from Panama. Little rabbit Conejito meets three scary preadtors on his way to vist Auntie Monica - who helps him outwit his enemies and journey safely home. Margaret Mead MacDonald's folktale from Panama. Little rabbit Conejito meets three scary preadtors on his way to vist Auntie Monica - who helps him outwit his enemies and journey safely home.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Rani

    Read about how Conejito outwits the tiger, lion, and fox on his return from Teo Monica's home from up in the mountains. Read about how Conejito outwits the tiger, lion, and fox on his return from Teo Monica's home from up in the mountains.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Christabelle

    I loved the mix of Spanish in the English text! The story was fun, too. I'm excited to find more titles from this author. I loved the mix of Spanish in the English text! The story was fun, too. I'm excited to find more titles from this author.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    Some of the rhymes in this made me laugh aloud. So fun.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    I've read this before and while I'm glad it exists, I am triste, triste, triste that this is the only Panamanian folk tale in picture book form that I have ever found :( I've read this before and while I'm glad it exists, I am triste, triste, triste that this is the only Panamanian folk tale in picture book form that I have ever found :(

  30. 5 out of 5

    Yissel Martinez

    I think this is a good book because it helps children learn a language other then English at a young age. The drawings that the pages portray are also eye catching and interesting to the children. Also, the Spanish words used in this book were repeated over and over again, which helps children remember and learn them. I also like that at the end of the book there is a column that explains what the Spanish words used in the book means.

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