“365 Penguins” by Jean-Luc Fromental and Joelle Jolivet
What if starting on January first you received one penguin in the mail every single day? I mean every.single.day. Like, 365 penguins by December 31st?! In reality, I would probably feel distressed. However, in the fictional world of fun and possibilities it sounds like one of the best ideas ever! In fact, it is the premise of this fictional book!
It starts with a family who is surprised to receive one penguin on January first, but soon finds out that one is on its way every single day. It is so humorous to watch their reaction to all the penguins, explain their frustrations and joys at having them and observe as they find new ways to count them. The best part is the surprise ending that explains the arrival of all their new bird friends and the lovely retro-style illustrations. My kids get the biggest kick out of the idea of a penguin showing up everyday and I really enjoy reading it with them. A definite winner.
New Year’s Resolution Activity
Because this story starts on January 1st and goes through an entire calendar year it makes sense that it makes a wonderful New Year’s read. After we read it the first time I knew it was going to have to be a New Year’s tradition in our home. However, my kids loved the idea of “a penguin a day” so much and I loved the idea of making it a tradition so much that I decided to create a New Year’s Resolution activity inspired by the book.
I centered it around New Year’s resolutions because I really want to encourage my children to make resolution. I feel it would help teach them about goal setting, help them experience the joy of accomplishment and help them practice accountability. I thought a printable tracker would be extra handy because I find that when I make a New Year’s resolution that I don’t share, write down, or track I am significantly less likely to accomplish it. (Anyone else?!) That is why I created a printable (free for personal and education use below) for my family to share and track our resolutions together for this next year.
It has a space at the top to write down your resolution followed by 100 squares to track the first 100 days of progress. (For 365 days I plan on printing off 3 of the 100 square sheets and 1 of the 65 square sheets.) Also, because I decided to make it “365 penguin” themed to go along with this book the idea behind the tracking is that we can put one penguin sticker in a square for every day that we accomplish our resolution. (With the goal of collecting as many of the 365 possible penguins as possible.) The penguin stickers are some I got from Amazon at this link here and they fit in the squares perfectly plus there are 800 penguin stickers in each pack. However, you could also use any small sticker or even just pencil in a check mark and that would work just fine.
The plan is that on New Year’s Eve we will all get together to read “365 Penguins” and then share our New Year’s Resolutions. Next we will write them on our own printable tracking sheet and start putting a sticker on the sheet for each day we accomplish our goal. I think we will put our sheets up on the inside of our doors as a reminder and so that we can encourage each other to accomplish our goals. At the end of the year we can celebrate the number of penguins we collected and maybe start all over again for the next year. I am hoping that my kids will love the idea of collecting “a penguin a day” as much as I do. Give it a try with us!
Page 1: 365 Penguins 100 Chart
Page 2: 365 Penguins 65 Chart
If you give this Beyond the Book activity a try I’d love to hear how it goes! Share it on Instagram using hashtag #beyondthebook (I’m on Instagram as @book.nerd.mommy) or even just comment here with your thoughts. It would make my day! Or to simply save for later pin the image below.