Once I Heard a Little Wombat
A beautiful Australian take on a classic nursery rhyme.
‘Once I heard a little wombat stomp stomp stomp . . . ‘
Read along and act out the movements as these baby Australian animals eat, play and settle down for nap time.
- Published: 16 July, 2019
- ISBN: 9781760890544
- Imprint: Picture Puffin
- Format: Board Book
- Pages: 24
Awards & Recognition
Environment Award for Children's LiteratureJOINT WINNER • 2016 • PICTURE FICTION
Speech Pathology Australia Book of the Year AwardsWINNER • 2016 • BIRTH TO 3 YEARS
Praise For Once I Heard a Little Wombat
And as well as being a beautiful object, Once I Heard a Little Wombat generously provides almost everything a parent or carer for a toddler could ask for in a story: movement prompts, a bold and contrasting subject for each spread, varying colour backgrounds, sounds (and just the right amount of repetition), voices, rhyme, first person narrative and can’t you just imagine it as a song? Once I Heard a Little Wombat is a deceptively sophisticated combination of art and aesthetic, with thoughtful and studied consideration of audience. It is exactly what a board book should be!
This delightful board book will engage young listeners at lots of levels as they gently learn about the names and habits of five very different Australian animals. The simple, rhyming text includes action verbs to encourage young listeners to engage in language as well as the action which is demonstrated in the pictures. Delightful for parents to share many repeat readings with their young children.
Cleverly interactive, the tale talks in first person, immediately connecting the reader with the audience. And it’s only at the very end that the mystery of the narrator is revealed. Great for fostering prediction skills! Energetic rhyme and repetitive verbs in clumps of three hook the listener in for the ride as an array of animals display their typical behavioural characteristics. In her characteristically unique and stunning style, Renée Treml‘s artwork is soothing, yet playful. ‘Once I Heard a Little Wombat’ is a delightful board book of perfect size and shape for little hands. With its exhibition of charming Australian animals and their habitats this lively romp has great learning potential, and is the perfect excuse for repeated read-alongs and role play action for all its early childhood readers.
Inspired by Walter Crane’s nursery rhyme “Once I Heard a Little Bird,” Treml gives readers a lyrical tour of Australian wildlife, as an unseen narrator encounters a sugar glider, bilby, Tasmanian devil, and more. Delicately detailed black-and-white portraits of the animals highlight their gleaming eyes and coarse fur, and the repetition of the verse (“I called to little bilby,/ ‘Won’t you stop, stop, stop?’/ But on went little bilby/ with a hop, hop, hop”) makes for playful yet soothing reading.