Title: Rollo’s Wet Surprise
Author: Penny Macoun
Published: 15th June 2021
Rollo is a dog that loves to go to work with his owner, Jim, who is a builder. Jim and his team of builders have been working on a house that Rollo has enjoyed visiting because the family like to give him lots of pats and the garden is nice and big, so he has lots of places to explore. One day, the builders are moving lots of big, heavy windows to a safe area. Rollo begins to explore this new part of the garden, and sniffs around. While Rollo is exploring, he tries to walk on a surface that he thinks is hard. Unfortunately, the hard surface is a pool cover and Rollo finds himself falling into a large swimming pool. Jim helps him out and everyone thinks it is very funny, except for Rollo. This book is ideal for teaching children about being safe around water and remembering to always close pool gates and never go near a pool without an adult.
- Water Safety
Rollo’s Wet Surprise is a beautiful story about a dog who hates water, and is a loyal pet to owner, Jim. While working with Jim on the house next door, Rollo encounters a strange blue concrete and decides to step on it. But poor Rollo is in for a huge surprise! The concrete is not concrete, but a pool cover! As Rollo tumbles into the pool, he struggles to get out – and is finally helped by Jim – but poor Rollo still hates water!
This delightful picture book from Penny Macoun with a dog as the protagonist is fun and educational – it can teach readers and kids about taking care of pets, taking care of each other and responsibility in the home and around pets. It also touches on water safety and swimming – with Rollo’s incident illustrating the dangers of pools for those who can’t swim. Books like this that take a serious subject and use a light-hearted story to help educate and open conversations about something like water safety are important. Fiction can often teach us more and strengthen the message. Combined with instructional teaching and physical lessons, this book is a good teaching tool for kids about swimming, water safety and how to care for pets.
Told through Rollo’s eyes, this story is also very enjoyable and is sure to be read many times – dogs are amazing, and Rollo reminded me a bit of the dog I had growing up – Indy. He feared the pool, but unlike Rollo, he enjoyed standing in the rain. But it was Rollo’s facial expressions that reminded me of Indy as well. I thought that Rollo’s voice was strong as well, and evoked a sense of whimsy and wonder, allowing the reader a glimpse into how a dog sees the world and understands it.
This book will charm and educate and be one that readers will come back to. It can be used in many educational settings as well to help with literacy and visual literacy and to see how words and pictures interact to tell a vibrant and fun story.