Cover image for I'll play with you
I'll play with you
Siddals, Mary McKenna.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Clarion Books, [2000]

Physical Description:
28 pages : color illustrations ; 19 cm
Children speak to the sun, wind, clouds, rain, stars, and moon, asking to play with them.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 1.4 0.5 47507.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Little Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Little Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



The cut-paper artistry of Caldecott winner David Wisniewski is joined with Mary McKenna Siddals's lyrical verse in this sweet and simple book about the joys of outdoor play. The sun, wind, clouds, rain, stars, and moon are waiting outside, inviting little ones to come and play with them. A multiethnic group of children is featured in this ideal read-aloud, in a small format perfect for little hands to hold.

Author Notes

David Wisniewski (wiz-NESS-key) was born in Middlesex, England, in 1953. After training at Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Clown College, he spent three years as a clown, designing and constructing his own props, costumes, and gags. He was subsequently hired by his future wife, Donna, as a performer with a traveling puppet theatre. Married six months later, the Wisniewskis started their own troupe, Clarion Shadow Theatre, specializing in shadow puppetry. In the course of creatingthe plays, puppets, and projected scenery, Mr. Wisniewski evolved the storytelling techniques and art skills that eventually led to his picture books with their unique cut-paper illustrations. His retelling of GOLEM was awarded the 1997 Caldecott Medal. David Wisniewski died in 2002 in the Maryland home he shared with his wife and two children.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 3-6. "I'll play with you, Sun. Meet me outside" begins this warm, exuberant story in which children find playmates in the natural world. Each child in a group of multicultural kids invites a different aspect of nature to a game: "I'll play with you, Clouds. Pile up in the sky. You make some pictures. I'll guess what they are. . . . I'll play with you, Rain, don't grumble at me! Just fill up the puddles so I can go splashing." Despite the simplicity of the text, which is well suited for beginning readers, the words are poetic, mixing humor and glee into the reverence for nature. In his familiar cut-paper artwork, Wisniewski shows the children's profound satisfaction at play, bringing the story to a close with deep indigo and starry skies and a friendly moon, glimpsed from the children's cozy beds. An excellent bedtime book, this will encourage urban and rural kids alike to engage with the outdoors. --Gillian Engberg

Publisher's Weekly Review

Four children treat nature as their playmate in Siddals's (Tell Me a Season) cheerful book. A waking boy tells the sun, "Meet me outside," and a girl greets the wind as she brushes her teeth. While sitting in a grassy field with his pet beagle, another boy challenges the clouds ("You make some pictures. I'll guess what they are"). The speakers are not just fair-weather friends; one girl implores the rain to "fill up the puddles so I can go splashing," then dons a yellow slicker and leaps right in. At day's end, all four unite on a hillside under a vast star-filled sky; Wisniewski's (Workshop) cutout shapes in variegated shades of post-dusk blue accentuate the depth and height of the panoramic view. Then the children, each back in their own rooms, fall asleep with the moon shining through the window. Wisniewski depicts detailed images of tiny leaves, draped cloth and the children's alert faces, as well as more abstract ideas, such as an invisible wind, which he whips up by slicing a spiral of semi-transparent paper. The author avoids anthropomorphizing the weather, simply by imagining how a person addresses a silent-but-agreeable companion: "You twinkle, and I'll try to count you," the children tell the stars. Although the young characters spend time apart from human companions, it's a comforting solitude that suggests a fresh connection with the world. Ages 2-5. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 1-In this well-crafted picture book, characteristics of the sun, wind, clouds, rain, stars, and moon are revealed from a child's point of view, as several youngsters ask the different elements to play with them. The text is simple, but rich with detail: "I'll play with you, Sun./Meet me outside./I'll help you make shadows./I'll hide while you climb./Then poke through the branches/and tickle me warm." The bright, bold, cut-paper artwork captures the feelings and images described in the verses. The sun looks warm and creates interesting shadows, the blowing and swirling motion of the wind is illustrated by the graceful movement of a collection of fall-colored leaves, and the nighttime scenes are depicted in cool shades of blue. Although the book's small size may make it difficult to use with large audiences, young listeners are bound to enjoy this attractive offering and the smooth, rhythmic text is well suited to reading aloud.-Melinda Schroeter, North Tonawanda Public Library, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.