Oldie But Goodies


4/5 waves

Author: Cynthia Rylant

Author Website: http://www.cynthiarylant.com/

Illustrator: Lauren Stringer

Publisher: Houghton, Mifflin, Harcourt, Publishing Co

ISBN: 978-0-15-205303-1

Word Count: 314

Published: 2008

This story is perfect for ages: 2-4, 4-6, 6+

Straight from Aunty LuLav

This is a gentle story of a little girl reflecting on the wonder of snow. Snow comes in many ways, like the soft snow that comes while you sleep or the type with fat and cheerful snowflakes that sends you home from school.

We follow her through early dismissal from school, to playing and making snow angels with friends and catching snowflakes on their tongues.

Cynthia Rylant’s text is soft and lilting, just like the floating snowflakes themselves. Unique and rhythmic, if you are quiet, you can feel the snowy moments as you read.

There is a wistfulness in the text as Rylant compares snow to life. Nothing lasts forever but memories, so you must enjoy each moment of life. Life, just like snow, is temporary, so build memories that last.

Scriptural Underpinnings & Positive Themes

The little girl and her grandmother have a strong family bond. Grandmother is present knitting and reading stories. She watches over the little girl playing outside in the snow from the window. They share tea and cookies and conversation at the end of the day.

There is a strong sense of HOME and love in the text and illustrations. One of Cynthia Rylant’s strengths is showing loving relationships in her writing, even in a book about SNOW! 1 Corinthians 13

The little girl and her grandmother take a walk through the snow to enjoy the beauty of the world around them. The children peer through the classroom window amazed at the intricate snowflakes.   Psalm 104 

SNOW –  Father God in heaven sends the snow to the earth, He even has storehouses of snow and hail in the sky.  Job 38:22, Job 37:5-6. 

God sends His Word to us in the earth to bear fruit, just like He sends the snow to water the earth and bear fruit. His Word, like the snow, will not return to Him without bearing the fruit for His kingdom in us! Isaiah 55:10. 

The loveliest of promises to us –  Father God promises us that though our sins are as scarlet, they shall be made white as snow! HALLELUJAH!  Isaiah 1:18 

At school and play children are happily together, both black and white. There is no tension nor division just joy and unity. Psalm 133:1, Romans 12:9-18, Proverbs 17:17, etc


Simply beautiful! The lines are soft, the snow wispy and delicate. Unique individual snowflakes flutter throughout the pages. 

Grandma’s house is small and cozy, complete with a cuddly cat.  The evening snow is pink as the sun sets in the distance.  


I love the illustrations in this book. The children in school are black and white and Asian, all together peering out the classroom window and in the school yard at dismissal time.

The little girl is Caucasian and her friend is African American playing joyfully together. The little girl is being raised by her grandmother. The setting seems to be rural or small town.

A Pause

This may be a pause for some parents, so I mention it. 

The actual snow is a tiny bit anthropomorphic in the story,  interacting with the children, but in a poetic sense.

The first page describes the best snow as coming softly at night like a shy friend… the illustration shows a little snow girl (not a fairy) outside in the yard, waiting until morning for the little girl to wake up.



The End of the Matter
4/5 waves

Let us shake the flakes from our Lulavs and say,
“YES” to Snow!

Publisher: Houghton, Mifflin, Harcourt, Publishing Co
ISBN: 978-0-15-205303-1
Word Count: 314
Published: 2008

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