McCloskey, Robert. Make Way for Ducklings. Ill. by Robert McCloskey. New York: Viking Press, 1941. ISBN 0670451495
2. PLOT SUMMARY
Mr. and Mrs. Mallard are looking for a safe place to build their nest and start their family. They finally find a nice place in the Boston Public Gardens where they can swim and eat peanuts, but it is too dangerous for ducklings, so they come to another small island where they will be left in peace. After the ducklings are born, Mrs. Mallard must teach them all about listening and being ducks before they can return to the gardens. Getting help from local police, Mrs. Mallard marches her ducklings right through downtown Boston and into the garden where they can grow up happy and safe.
3. CRITICAL ANALYSIS
Young readers might not understand Mrs. Mallard’s need for a quiet place to raise her ducklings, but they will love reading about how the little ones learn to walk in a straight line and come when called. They will relate to the dangers of crossing the street and learn that policemen can help even ducklings when they’re needed. The simple wording and straightforward story telling will let them immerse themselves in the hyper-realistic images of the ducklings with the simplified streets and people as they march down the city blocks. The sepia-toned art, paired with bold text will allow young readers to follow along on the adventure.
4. REVIEW EXCERPT(S
1941 CALDECOTT MEDAL
From NEWBERRY MEDAL SELECTION MEMBER KARIN SNELSON – “Robert McCloskey, creator of Blueberries for Sal, never fails to elicit happy story-time giggles from youngsters, and his soft, brown-toned, Caldecott-winning illustrations make this gentle world come alive.”
From THE BARNES & NOBLE REVIEWER AMY BARKAT – “McClosky's illustrations are brilliant and filled with humor. The details of the ducklings, along with the popular sights of Boston, come across wonderfully.”
Top 100 Picture Books #6 by School Library Journal
Gather other traveling animal books to read such as:
• Flack, Marjorie. Ills. Kurt Wiese. THE STORY ABOUT PING. ISBN 0448421658
• Brown, Margaret Wise. Ills. Clement Hurd. THE RUNAWAY BUNNY. ISBN 0064430189
Gather other Robert McCloskey books to read such as:
• TIME OF WONDER. ISBN 0140502017
• BLUEBERRIES FOR SAL. ISBN 014050169X