How to Two
How to Two
Publisher's Hardcover15.29
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Annotation: A child's solitary day at the playground turns into a park-wide adventure as he learns how to play with nine new friends.
Catalog Number: #181015
Format: Publisher's Hardcover
Publisher: Dial
Copyright Date: 2019
Edition Date: 2019
Pages: 40
Availability: Available
ISBN: 0-525-42784-8
ISBN 13: 978-0-525-42784-1
Dewey: E
LCCN: 2018040230
Dimensions: 27 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
This counting book, which celebrates the joy and energy of childhood, opens dynamically, with the first pages showing one child flying off a slide and right into the next page. With the page turn emphasized, one child becomes two, playing on a slide. And so the pattern begins, as the two become three jumping rope and four playing ball, until there are 10 children actively engaged. The colorful illustrations, mostly two-page spreads, celebrate activities children of all backgrounds love, including splashing in puddles and playing hide-and-seek. There are some shadows of friends waiting to be included, and many pages have animals that readers are asked later to "discover." The rhythm of the story changes with the final activity, which is pictured in multiple smaller images; one goes to the library and chooses a book before becoming two in mother's lap. Children will easily see themselves in the many activities presented d hopefully remember to count as well.
Kirkus Reviews
From the co-creator and illustrator of the Ladybug Girl books comes a joyful exploration of a day at the playground, where a young child finds new playmates and shares new activities in almost every spread until one has become 10 and it's clear that all are welcome to play. Sparse text—the words "How to" followed by a number with occasional changes in punctuation—and subtle illustrated details offer multiple opportunities for readers to practice counting from one to 10 on each spread: The back endpapers explicitly ask readers to "find the critters," while the spine depicts 10 running silhouettes, and the book's jacket back depicts child hands of many shades indicating numbers. The text's pacing and layout at times feel a bit forced when it extends the patterned "how to…" lines across more than one double-page spread, but overall the pacing is balanced, especially in the gorgeous wordless full-bleed spread that depicts all 10 children playing after the rainstorm before parting ways. Perhaps most valuable, however, are Soman's thoughtful, diverse depictions of the children and families (an interracial two-dad family; several solo older caregivers; an older sibling; a brown-skinned woman in a headscarf) through a range of skin and hair color, clothing, and gender presentations. Meanwhile, the young child and their mother, whose story grounds the book, appear to be white. No two ways about it—this one is a delight. (Picture book. 3-8)
Publishers Weekly
Soman (the Ladybug Girl series) imagines the ways that a growing number of children can play together by counting up to 10. -How to one,- shows a lone boy on a city playground slide, arms and legs flying. In -How to two,- the boy and a girl see-saw together. -How to three!- shows the two holding a jump rope for a third child, while -How to four?- introduces still another to a game of foursquare. The children represent an array of different skin tones and sizes, and they-re unfailingly kind to each other, inviting lonely newcomers to join their games. More is always better, and as the group gets bigger, the games grow more exciting. Soman-s watercolors find beauty in the landscape of play as the children regard a pond filled with red-eared sliders and splash joyously in puddles after a shower, their antics mirrored in the water while clouds scud overhead. A later spread shows the children going off with their parents and guardians-two men, single parents, a hijabi mother-until -How to one- begins anew. In kinetic illustrations, Soman champions diversity, inclusiveness, and the power of allowing children to play as they wish. Ages 3-5. (Mar.)

School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1 Soman provides a look at how children spend a day at the playground. He starts with one young boy who is having a wonderful time flying down the slide by himself. The simple text describes this image as "How to one." As the story develops, each page shows an increase in the number of children interacting together and the text remains simple: "How to two. How to three" and so on until 10. The illustrations portray children of differing genders, skin color, hair color, and clothing type. As the numbers grow, the activities begin to change. While a seesaw is great for two, digging in the sand is much more suitable for five. The illustrations keep the story moving and allow for readers to have conversations about what is going on. After the book reaches 10, the original protagonist heads home alone and it begins again. This time, "How to two" depicts the boy and his mother or caregiver reading a story together. VERDICT Recommended for general purchase for most picture book collections. While many will see this as a counting book, it is also a delightful tribute to the sheer joy and innocence of childhood. Kristen Todd-Wurm, Middle Country Public Library, NY
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
ALA Booklist (2/1/19)
Kirkus Reviews (4/1/19)
Publishers Weekly (4/1/19)
School Library Journal (4/1/19)
Reading Level: 1.0
Interest Level: P-K
Lexile: 60L

From the co-creator of the New York Times bestselling Ladybug Girl series comes a joyful counting book about inclusivity, play, and the thrill of making new friends--from one to ten and back again.

A quiet day at the playground turns into a boisterous park-wide adventure as one boy on the slide becomes two kids on the see-saw, then three jumping rope. Before long, ten new friends are playing like they've known one another forever.

With its deceptively simple text and a rich visual narrative, How to Two is a playful counting and reverse-counting concept book as well as an exuberant celebration of inclusive play, friendship, and community.

"No two ways about it--this one is a delight." --Kirkus
"A joyous celebration of play...Seamless...Diverse." --The Horn Book (starred review)
"Inviting and welcoming." --BCCB (starred review)
"Dynamic." --Booklist
"Exciting." --Publishers Weekly

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