Academic journal article New England Reading Association Journal

Donavan's Word Jar

Academic journal article New England Reading Association Journal

Donavan's Word Jar

Article excerpt

DE GROSS, MONALISSA (1994). Donavan's Word Jar. Illustrated by Cheryl Hanna. New York: Harper Trophy/HarperCollins. ISBN 006442089.

In ten short chapters, we meet Donavan Alien, a little boy who likes being like everyone else in his third grade class, and at that age many children are collectors. What sets Donavan apart is the thing he collects: words. Each chapter is illustrated with realistic pencil drawings of Donavan and his charming family, and each picture is decorated with a variety of words on strips of paper, pertinent to the events in that chapter. Donavan's words, like those in the illustrations, are on slips of paper, gathered each day from his environment, then written in purple ink on yellow paper each night and placed in a treasured jar. He discovers words everywhere: he finds "solidarity" marching in a parade, and "pincers" in his father's tool chest. …

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