Mouse’s First Summer: A Book That Will Tickle Your Senses

Hello everyone!

I have a very sweet book to share with you today.

I was looking for some summer themed books and found this little treasure.

Even though most kids aren’t in school in the summer, I went ahead and wrote up several book extensions in case you want to read this book to your class at the beginning of school (the end of summer) or perhaps next June.

Title: Mouse’s First Summer
Author: Lauren Thompson
Illustrator: Buket Erdogan
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2004
Ages: 3-6 years
Themes: Summer, Mice, Wonder

Opening Lines:

One sunny summer day Mouse and Minka came along to play!


This is a delightful story about two young mice, Minka and Mouse, who discover the joys of summer for the very first time. They spend a beautiful summer day having a picnic in the park. The day is full of wonder as they discover ants, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, fireworks, fireflies, watermelon and more!

My Thoughts:

There’s so much to love about this book, from the charming text and colourful illustrations to the innocent and curious mice. I’m not sure how the illustrations were done. Perhaps chalk pastels? But they have a very textured appearance that’s appealing.

I really like how curious Mouse is. Every single page Mouse is wondering about something new. And even though it’s a deceptively simple book, it has a lot of sophisticated language. There are rhymes, alliteration, and fun descriptive words. The text and pictures tickle all five senses, which makes it a satisfying read!

6 Ways to Extend the Book:

Visualization: Before reading the book or even showing its cover, ask your students to close their eyes and image a wonderful summer day. While they’re visualizing ask them, what are you doing? What do you see? Smell? Feel? Hear? When everyone’s eyes are open take a few minutes to share their mind pictures. This is a great activity to build anticipation before reading.

Activating the 5 Senses: After reading each page say something like, “Ooh, can’t you just taste that sweet-tart lemonade?” or “Can you feel the tickly green grass?”  You’ll be able to do this for all 5 senses.

Taste and Write: There are a variety of foods mentioned in the book. If you’re able to, it would be fun to taste one of them in the classroom, really savour it and then, as a class, print some descriptive words, trying to access all 5 senses.

Paint or draw a picture of your favourite picnic food and then write some descriptive words around it for a free-form poem. I’ll be doing that next week with a watermelon. Be sure to come back for that post.

Make a Wonder Book: Mouse is a curious little creature. Challenge your students to wonder aloud. You could make a class book. “Sarah wonders …”, “Sam wonders …”, “Heather wonders…”  Each child could illustrate their own page .

Mouse’s First Summer Word Search: If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you know I like making word searches. The one I have today would be great for precocious Kindies, but better suited for first and second graders.


The author, Lauren Thompson, has a whole series of Mouse and Minka books you might like.

Thanks for stopping by!


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