This is a book that was just waiting for someone to write it. I’m glad that Elaine Kiely Kearns was there for the creating, because she knows dinosaurs, the dynamics of the childhood “NO,” and how to make all of this funny.
First, there is such a thing as a noasaurus. And it’s fitting that scientists believe it was about the size of a small child. It looks quite a bit like our main character, Noah.
Noah is a little guy who woke up on the wrong side of the bed, and lets everyone know—or in this case “NO.”
We know this child, right? We’ve lived with them. (Heck, we’ve all been this child.) They woke up submerged in negativity and don’t know how to shake it.
Here we see Noah saying:
What part of “NO” don’t we understand? Then Noah’s mother, brother, and father try to placate the little nay-sayer with food, games or other tasty treats. He cuts them short, slams the door on the way out of his house, and is instantly greeted by one of his friends.
“Good morning, Noah Noasaurus,” said Toby Rex. “Where are you off to?
“Nowhere,” Noah grumbled.
“Nowhere? Ooooooh, that sounds fun! I’ll come with you!”
Noah kept walking.
One by one, more dinosaurs join in the effort. And thankfully, Noah’s friends don’t give up on this negative kid. In a tantrum-laden, stomping, huffing, mud-splattered scene, Noah learns to laugh at himself and with his friends, and finally reaches the “right side of the bed” as he answers the question:
“Is there anything better than a muddy parade with friends?””
Noah Noasauraus flashed a wide smile and shouted…
Colin Jack’s illustrations are so playful and expressive, you don’t have to be able to read a word to witness Noah’s transformation. I can see kids wanting to turn this into a play or taking Noah’s part in a read aloud. It is just soo much fun to get all that negativity out in the open and then let it dissipate. Highly recommended!
Act out Noah Noasaurus. Take turns playing Noah. Discuss how it feels to go from being an angry dinosaur to a happy one.
Use pictures from the book or draw dinosaurs that look angry, grumpy, happy, or sad. Discuss the features of each dinosaur that clue the viewer in to how each dinosaur is feeling.
Make two collages, one for “No” things and one for “YES” things. Which collage has the most pictures? Discuss how to fill up the page with more “YES” things. Are there ways to turn a “NO” into a “YES”?
Check out this website for ways to deal with negative thinking.
Or this website from WorryWiseKids about overcoming negative thinking.
TITLE: Noah Noasaurus
AUTHOR: Elaine Kiely Kearns
ILLUSTRATOR: Colin Jack
PUBLISHER: Albert Whitman, 2019
THEMES: Negative behavior, Self-awareness, friendship
For more perfect picture book recommendations, visit Susanna Hill’s blog.