How Rocket Learned To Read (Tad Hills)

Hello everyone, and happy International Children’s Book Day! Today’s book is How Rocket Learned To Read by Tad Hills, a sweet tale about the joys of learning the “wondrous, mighty, gorgeous alphabet.”

One day, while Rocket the dog is settling in for a nap under a shady tree, he meets a little yellow bird. She greets Rocket as her student, and tells him how exciting it is that he wants to learn to read. Rocket insists that he is not looking to learn anything; he just wanted a nap. The bird encourages him to come back if he changes his mind, and sets up her outdoor “classroom” while Rocket settles down to sleep. But when she begins reading a book aloud, Rocket finds himself becoming interested in the story! He wants to know the ending, but before he can hear it, the bird flies away. When she comes back the next day, she finds Rocket waiting and eager to hear the rest of her story and more, and so the bird begins to teach him how to read. It’s a long process, but he is determined: Rocket the dog will learn to read!

This was a very cute book that walks children through the process of learning to read: recognizing letters and the sounds they make, piecing the letters together to make words, then stringing those words together to read sentences. It also celebrates why learning to read is great, showing that reading means learning to spell, better knowing one’s world, and of course, being able to enjoy books and stories. Rocket and his little bird friend are positively adorable, and are sure to charm any little bookworm. The story was just a bit long for JJ, but not by much; slightly older children would be able to handle it easily. Overall, it’s a lovely book that celebrates and encourages the power of books and reading, and we enjoyed it! Baby Bookworm approved!

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