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Have You Seen My Duckling?
Have You Seen My Duckling?
by Nancy Tafuri

Nancy Tafuri's mother duck needs help to find her mischievous missing duckling in this board book edition of the Caldecott Honor Book.

Age: 1 Year-olds | Title: Have You Seen My Duckling?  |  Author: Nancy Tafuri  |  Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Nancy Tafuri's mother duck needs help to find her mischievous missing duckling in this board book edition of the Caldecott Honor Book.

Have You Seen My Duckling is a Caldecott Honor winner. The soft watercolor pictures create gentle scenes of nature and wildlife. And the simple story is one all parents can relate to. Mama Duck wades around the pond – seven ducklings in tow – asking all the animals she encounters if they’ve seen her duckling, since one is missing.  Although this sounds like a tragic and upsetting storyline, the reader is privy to additional information – they can see the “missing” duckling on each page. He is just out of Mama Duck’s sight, chasing curiously after a butterfly.

You and your little one can play a sort-of ‘Where’s Waldo?’ style game with the eighth duckling as you turn each page. Practice counting with your child and name the wildlife creatures as Mama Duck encounters them. She speaks with different birds, a turtle, a beaver, and there are different insects in each scene.

When my friend Dano and I read this book together, he pointed to the duckling on each page and said, “He’s right there! Look right there!” He was quite relieved at the end, when Mama Duck finally found her missing duckling.

-- Audra

Nancy Tafuri began drawing at a very young age. She recalls that her mother "thought [she] would make a great interior decorator." But Tafuri had other ideas: "The more I thought about it the more I realized that I didn't want to fix up other people's houses. I had no idea that you could grow up to be a children's book illustrator."

Nancy's first big break as an illustrator for children's books came when she was given the opportunity to work on George Shannon's The Piney Woods Peddler in 1980. She modeled her illustrations on her husband and the old Pennsylvania gristmill they were living in at the time, and the book was published in 1981. The Piney Woods Peddler proceeded to win a Children's Choice citation from the International Reading Association and Tafuri's output has been prolific ever since.

Nancy says that when she was little she loved animals and wanted to draw them. As an illustrator, she always works very hard on "getting all the facts correct in my illustrations. Each animal or rock formation has to be correct. Even though my books aren't nonfiction, the feeling of accuracy has to be there."

Nancy has received several citations and awards for her work, including the Caldecott Honor Award for Have You Seen My Duckling? She lives in the country with her husband and daughter.

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