Many Moons: James Thurber

Many Moons

Author: James Thurber
Illustrator: Louis Slobodkin
Publisher: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich
Publication Year: 1943
Brief Summary: When Princess Lenore falls ill and demands the moon, the King’s wisest advisors could not figure out how to get it for her.  Only the court jester was able to fulfill her wish.

Awards, Honors and Prizes:

Randolph Caldecott Medal, 1944 Winner United States

Best Books:

Books to Read Aloud to Children of All Ages, 2003 ; Bank Street College of Education
Children’s Catalog, Eighteenth Edition, 2001 ; H.W. Wilson
Children’s Catalog, Nineteenth Edition, 2006 ; H.W. Wilson
Notable Children’s Books, 1940-1954 ; ALSC American Library Association

Ideas for using this book in classroom or library:

  • Discussion of wisdom.  Of the people the king consulted about getting the moon, who was the wisest?  Were you surprised that it’s the court jester?  (What is a jester?  What do jesters do?)
  • Have you ever gotten really sick?  Was there anything that would’ve made you feel better?
  • What kind of things did the Lord High Chamberlain and the Royal Wizard have on their lists that they have gotten for the king?  Does that tell you anything about the king’s character?
  • What does perception mean?  Why do all these people in the book have different answers for how big and how far the moon is?

Brief notes on curriculum connections/content learning standards/Common Core/etc.

  • Science — how far away is the moon, scientifically speaking?  Read a non-informational book to find out.

Special features included (if applicable) — index; timeline; author’s notes; further reading; etc.

Accessed at: Thrasher Elementary Library


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