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Ling and Ting | Class #2, 2016

lin_ling-and-ting-together-in-all-weatherThis is one of two early readers (a.k.a. easy readers) for our second class. At the end of our last class, we talked about the difference between picture books and easy readers. How well do you think this book works in the early reader genre? Clearly it's for somewhat more fluent readers than the Elephant and Piggy books. Do the situations match the age of the average new reader? What if a somewhat older child is learning to read at this level? Easy readers may not look as flashy as picture books, but in some ways they are more challenging to create. The author and illustrator must perform a balancing act to make the book inviting yet not intimidating. Imagine trying to create specific and engaging characters using very few words and clean, simple illustrations.

Lolly Robinson

Lolly Robinson is a freelance designer and consultant with degrees in studio art and children’s literature. She is the former creative director for The Horn Book, Inc., and has taught children’s literature at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education. She has served on the Caldecott and Boston Globe-Horn Book Award committees and blogged for Calling Caldecott and Lolly's Classroom on this site.


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Robin Kane

I love the point that John T. brings up about the opportunities in this book for talking to children about inferences and how the characters may be saying one thing, yet be feeling another. I really enjoyed this book for a number of reasons. First, I loved the illustrations which felt, for some reason, very nostalgic to me. I particularly liked the title page and they joy on Ting's (?) face as she is jumping in the puddle. I'm guessing it's Ting because she seemed to me the more impulsive one and Ling a bit more serious. I look forward to reading the other books in the series now, so I can get to know each girl better! This book is great for a wide range of readers, which makes it perfect for a classroom library The book's repetitive text, engaging illustrations and humorous story lines make it accessible to many children at many different levels. I especially love that each short story is set up as a chapter. Some children will work to read one chapter, while another would enjoy the whole book at one sitting. Loved it!

Posted : Apr 05, 2016 04:27

John Travis

Thank you so much for the opportunity to read this book. While I know some comments referred to the challenges of telling the characters apart, I was struck by how well the book seems to create complexity out of simplicity. The use of repetition, form, and sight words made the reading experience feel appropriate for an early reader (though as a former high school math teacher, I am no expert on this) while still having complex literary elements of irony, other forms of humor, and rich opportunities for students to make textual inferences. For instance, in the first story, I felt an excellent question could be whether or not Ling and Ting were actually scared. A literal reading of the text might say no, but a more subtle reading of the text and use of the pictures may allow a student to infer that the girls wanted to appear brave in a scary situation. Thank you again!

Posted : Mar 31, 2016 03:54

Soujanya Ganig

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and understand why I would have loved it as a child as well. The characters are carefully crafted and somehow seem very close to the reader. While there is the main theme of seasons, there is fun and interesting storyline with every story which ties back to the larger narrative. I agree with Marty on the point he raises about connections in the story adding to the element of interest and curiosity in the book. While there are a lot of facts, the narrative pushes the reader towards higher order thinking tasks of drawing inferences.

Posted : Mar 31, 2016 03:22

Kara Lawson

Ling and Ting are popular characters with struggling readers in my third grade classroom! With many repeated words and lines and short, simple sentences without frills, the book Together in All Weather, primes students with many opportunities for reading success. They are hooked by the familiar and developmentally appropriate experiences explored throughout the book, like the fear of lightning, the challenge of making a lemonade stand, and telling a fib to get out of shoveling snow. Furthermore, early readers are excited to finally be reading a “chapter book,” as there are multiple short stories compiled within this bright and cheery text.

Posted : Mar 30, 2016 06:01

Marty Ray

I loved this book because of the individuality of the separate stories, yet a continuous narrative that was weaved through all of them. I felt that I could read each story on its own but the commonality and surprising connections to the other ones felt fun and I could see how a child would be astonished by something familiar from a previous story pop up again a few pages later - for instance Ling's lost hat in story 3 that was found in story 5. I also found the jacket descriptions interesting - it mentions that Ling and Ting are not exactly the same and I found myself trying to discover what was different about them (beyond the opposite colored shoes and socks throughout the book!) The author's description of herself was also fun to read - it followed the style of the stories, which all reminded me of Hemingway's writing method, with its brief, understated staccato style.

Posted : Mar 30, 2016 11:39

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