Last time I reviewed Ernest, the Moose Who Doesn’t Fit and noted that it was a good book for expanding preschool and early grade school math concepts beyond counting.
Stack the Cats is another picture book that goes beyond counting to highlight simple and fun examples of more complex math concepts. In this case we see addition, subtraction and grouping.
We start with counting: The first spread shows a line drawing of a big, yellow, sleeping cat on a lovely green background. The facing page, which is solid coral, has large text that says, “One cat sleeps.” This is the pattern of the book: There are vibrant colors, large clear text, and fun illustrations – you want to reach in and touch those delightful kitties.
Vibrant colors and simple text continue until we get to three cats. The text says, “Three Cats?” and the illustration shows three cats one on top of another and it says, “STACK?” When we get to the number six we find that, “Six cats prefer two stacks of three cats.” The fun continues as we see six sleeping cats and one sleeping apart for “seven.” On “eight” we find that “eight cats try to stack but….tumble.” The grand finale is that ten are too many and so they group in a variety of ways. The final page asks, “How will you stack the cats?” This last page literally invites the reader to start stacking items.
Fun with Reading
- Talk about the illustrations:
- What color/colors are the cats?
- Which are right side up and which are upside down?
- Which are big, medium or small?
- And of course, count the cats!
- Get some items to stack such as small boxes, stuffed animals, books. Discover all the stackable things in your home.
- Reread the book and regroup the cats