How Many Peas in a Pod

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					How Many Peas in a Pod?
By Margaret Allum & Judy Watson

                                    How many jellybeans in a jar?
                                    Flip the flap!
                                    Eleven jellybeans in a jar…jiving to jazz!

                                    How Many Peas in a Pod? is a busy lift-the-flap
                                    counting book that uses absurd humour to encourage
                                    children to learn to count from 1 to 12. The book
                                    brings to life a cast of talented characters: ballet-
                                    dancing bugs, trombone-playing toucans and even
                                    poetry-writing pigs!

                                     When each flap is lifted, the original picture is
transformed into a new picture that illustrates a number. The simple question-and-answer
format engages young children on two levels; children are encouraged to predict the next
number in the series 1 to 12, and to guess what might be underneath the flap.

The illustrations are playful and imaginative—an unassuming pea pod turns into a party
of peas; a humble pumpkin patch becomes a riotous scene with four pumpkins pedalling
tricycles! Like the illustrations, the text is also lively. From bouncing bears in a bed to
lounging lizards on a log, alliteration is used throughout the book to stimulate a love of
words and language.

Margaret Allum says:
“The idea for How Many Peas in a Pod came from observing children’s delight at the
absurd and incongruous—preschoolers have such a wonderful sense of the ridiculous! I
wanted to incorporate an educational concept into a book that provokes laughter and is
fun to share.”

About the author
Born in Perth, Margaret Allum worked in a children’s publishing house in London before
moving to Sydney with her husband and young daughter. How Many Peas in a Pod? is her
first book.

About the illustrator
Judy Watson is an illustrator, designer and researcher, who has illustrated several
educational books for children. Judy lives in Melbourne with her husband and two sons.
(Her second child was born at the same time as this book!)

•   Before reading How Many Peas in a Pod?, look at the title and front cover. What
    is a pod? Predict what this book may be about.

•   Discuss unfamiliar words such as poetry, crooning lullabies, trombones, toucans.
    Write a poem, sing a lullaby, make musical instruments, and jive to jazz music.

•   Guess what image will be revealed when the flap is lifted. Can you guess

•   Discuss words that begin with the same letter. For example: cows, cornfield,
    counting crows. Does this happen on every page?

•   Create graphic number cards. On each card include the numeral and invite
    students to illustrate them. For example: six partying peas in a pod.

•   Sort the graphic number cards in ascending order.
    Distribute cards to students and ask them to place
    themselves in order. Invite them to act out what their
    card depicts, for example: practising ballet, bouncing
    up and down.

•   Have students count to 12. Count backwards. Count by
    twos. Talk about a dozen. How many is a dozen?

•   Explore each page and decide whether the action on
    each page could be true. Can pigs write poetry? Can
    pumpkins pedal tricycles? Can socks skip in a circle?
    Find the one page that is true.

•   Talk about lizards. Why do lizards sunbake on rocks?
    Place some rocks in your environment and watch the
    lizards come out to lounge on a sunny day.

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