Age Range: 2+
What the Ladybird Heard is an amusing, cleverly written story in which the ladybird and her farmyard friends outwit thieves who are planning to steal the farmer’s prize cow.
The Story: The ladybird hears that two thieves are planning to steal the farmer’s prize cow so she comes up with her own cunning plan. She whispers her plan to the animals on the farm and when thieves Hefty Hugh and Lanky Len put their plan into action the animals confuse the thieves and save the cow.
We love this story, it really makes us laugh and the cunning plan is clever but simple enough for a child to understand. Thieves Hefty Hugh and Lanky Len know exactly which route they need to take to the cowshed, they’ll listen to the noises that the animals make. However, the animals impersonate each other and lead Hugh and Len to a very wet destination before they are taken away in a police car.
The bouncy, easy to read rhyme introduces young children to different animals and the noises that they make. The rhymes and repetition are good for beginner readers and it’s a lovely story to introduce animal vocabulary to non native English speakers. Lydia Monk’s bold, colourful illustrations include a glittery ladybird to find on every page and a lovely illustration shows the glittery trail of the ladybird’s flight as she whispers her plan to each animal, the trail is slightly raised for little fingers to follow.
What the Ladybird Heard is a great story to include in a classroom topic on animals or insects. I’ve also used it really successfully with non native English speaking children. I love the map that Hugh and Len have drawn as part of their planning, it would be a fun one to include in a geography lesson.