The Stray Dog
Author/Illustrator: retold and illustrated by Marc Simont
Publication Year: 2001
Brief Summary: Based on a true story by Reiko Sassa, The Stray Dog recounts how a family comes to find and fall in love with a dog they named Willy.
Awards, Honors and Prizes:
- Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Excellence in Children’s Literature, 2001 Honor Book Picture Book United States
- New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books of the Year, 2001 Winner United States
- Parents’ Choice Award, 2001 Gold Picture Books United States
- Randolph Caldecott Medal, 2002 Honor Book United States
- Best Children’s Books of the Year, 2002 ; Bank Street College of Education
- Capitol Choices, 2001 ; The Capitol Choices Committee
- Children’s Book Sense 76 Picks, Spring/Summer 2001 ; Book Sense 76
- Children’s Books of Distinction, 2002 ; Riverbank Review
- Children’s Catalog, Eighteenth Edition, Supplement, 2002 ; H.W. Wilson
- Children’s Catalog, Nineteenth Edition, 2006 ; H.W. Wilson
- Horn Book Fanfare, 2001 ; Horn Book
- Los Angeles’ 100 Best Books, 2001 ; IRA Children’s Literature and Reading SIG and the Los Angeles Unified School District
- Notable Children’s Books, 2002 ; ALSC American Library Association
- Publishers Weekly Book Review Stars, December 2000 ; Cahners
- Reading Magic Award, 2001 ; Parenting
- School Library Journal Best Books, 2001 ; Cahners
- School Library Journal Book Review Stars, February 2001 ; Cahners
- Arkansas Diamond Primary Book Reading List, 2003-2004; Nominee
- Blue Hen Book Award, 2003; Nominee
- Georgia Children’s Picture Storybook Award, 2003-2004; Nominee
- Kentucky Bluegrass Award, 2003; Nominee
- Mockingbird Award, 2001-2002; Nominee
- North Carolina Children’s Book Award, 2003; Nominee
- Red Clover Children’s Choice Picture Book Award , 2002-2003; Nominee
Ideas for using this book in classroom or library:
- Do you have any pets? What kind of pet do you have and how do you take care of them? What do you do with your pet? (If child doesn’t have pet, have them talk about what kind of pet they’d like, why they would or would not want a pet.)
- If you were to find a stray in your neighborhood, what would you do? Have children make a “lost dog” poster…what kind of details would you include on the poster to help you find the rightful owner?
- Discuss setting of the book…where does the majority of the story take place?
- What does your family do on weekends?
- In the middle of the book, the family spends an entire week thinking about Willy. By looking at the pictures, how can you tell whether they are paying attention to what they were doing or not? Write captions for what they are doing, or write what happens because they were daydreaming about Willy.
Brief notes on curriculum connections/content learning standards/Common Core/etc.
- Language arts: labeling “wordless” pictures and making inferences
- Social studies: taking care of pets
- Art: making posters
Special features included (if applicable) — index; timeline; author’s notes; further reading; etc.
Accessed at: Personal Library