Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Stick Kid

Stick Kid by Peter Holwitz was another gem recently found at the Cover to Cover sidewalk sale. I fell in love with the illustrations right away because they are done using a stick figure to start with, a stick kid. My students illustrate with stick kids, all children start there (generally). This opening text starts the reader's journey.

I once drew a stick kid.
Just a quick little stick kid.
I gave him two eyes
and a push-up nose.
Ten little fingers
and ten little toes.

The book continues by following this stick kid. He grows, he wants things, and he tries things. Dialogue is used to show the parents response and guidance. The stick kid leaves one night only to return as a stick man with his wife and stick kid. The last page is charming and every parent will want to reread this book with kids, I just can't give it away here.

Stick Kid offers lots of opportunities to talk about illustrating and drawing. We could easily replicate our own stick kids with sharpie pens and colored markers. This book provides models for adding clothing and dimensional bodies. My favorite page is when the stick kid turns upside, his face is pink and his t shirt crunches up showing his belly. Why would the illustrator do these things to the stick kid? would be a great discussion question to create more careful illustrator thinking.


  1. It sounds like a gem, Mandy. Thanks for sharing!

  2. At the beginning of the year I am always looking for illustrators I feel can speak to my class. Books in which kids can think, "I can draw like that to tell my story". As a first grade teacher, I always like illustrators who will speak to those who are not as confident in their ability to tell stories with pictures. I love books like ISH, as well as illustrators like Crews, Parr, Barton, and Carle. I'm adding this book to my first of year stack for getting writers thinking about illustrating stories. Thanks, Mandy.