Saturday, January 17, 2015

A Picture Book a Day for a Year: Day 273

Picture Book: If You’re Happy and You Know It

Adapted by: Anna McQuinn

Illustrator: Sophie Fatus

Summary: This traditional song is delightfully illustrated with a diverse collection of children representing 36 of the world’s cultures. Gestures called for vary from the usual “clap your hands” and “stamp your feet” to the less traditional “point your toes” and say, “Hello.” There are many translations of “hello” in the back of the book along with a drawing of each of the children that make an appearance. Their names and countries are listed too. A note says, “To add words to this song from each of the languages featured in this book, please search for “If You’re Happy and You Know it” at The musical score is in the back as well.

Hanna’s Comments: In this version, the lyrics are a little different than what I learned. Rather than the words I sang as a child, “Then your face will surely show it,” this book reads, “And you really want to show it.” That‘s an easy change! Your book may include an enhanced CD with video animation and audio sing-along. I never have a problem with the idea of singing “secular” songs in a faith context especially when that song is celebratory. Music and song are wonderful gifts from God as are our well-designed bodies. This book celebrates all of these and the beautiful diversity of our world. There are two other books with this title that I ran across. One calls itself the “Jungle Edition”. It incorporates jungle animals and what they might do to show their happiness. That book is by James Warhola. The other is more of a narrative that features this song. Animal characters talk about how they choose to sing it. This version is by Jan Ormerod and comes with a CD.

Publisher & Date of Publication:  Barefoot Books, 2009

Age & Grade Appropriateness: 3 and up, Pre and up

# of Pages: 24

Available in Spanish? There are other picture books with Spanish versions of this song’s lyrics.

Formats other than Book: Audio download, Your book may include an enhanced CD with video animation and audio sing-along.

PBT Category: Song Book, Post 2K

PBT Topics this Book Connects with: celebration/party, choir/music/singing/songs, culture, dance/dancing, difference, diversity, gladness/happiness, joy, variety

Scripture Connections: Clap your hands, all you peoples; shout to God with loud songs of joy (Psalm 47:1); this is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it (Psalm 118:24); but the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy… (Galatians 5:22); rejoice in the Lord always (Philippians 4:4); count it all joy (James 1:2)

Idea(s) for Application: Sing or read this song to your children when you want to celebrate and rejoice in the Lord!

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