Arnold Lobel’s Frog and Toad books are simply classic creations. There are plays on words, there are clever conundrums, and there is plenty of humor. My (almost) five-year-old enjoys reading all the books in the series. The series includes these books: Frog and Toad Are Friends, Frog and Toad Together (award a Caldecott Honor), Frog and Toad All Year, and Days with Frog and Toad.
In this series, the two friends live their every day life. Each book has four or five stories, and each story follows a very basic conflict, either an internal personal conflict, a friendship trial, or a conflict of some kind in their animal community. Because the situations are so universal, children can relate to the stories. I also love that each story ends with some kind of humorous or insightful twist that makes the reader simply satisfied. The deceptively simple stories are nearly perfect, in my opinion.
My son’s favorite story may be the one where Toad goes swimming in his ridiculous swimming suit and all the animals laugh at him (“A Swim” in Frog and Toad are Friends). He also really likes when Toad grows plants: he yells at the plants to “start growing” and tries to nuture them by playing the violin, among other things (“The Garden” in Frog and Toad Together). My favorite has always been the one where the two friends try not to eat the cookies (“Cookies” in Frog and Toad Together). When Frog lets birds eat the cookies so they will not be tempted to eat them all, Toad goes home to bake a cake.
Each of the stories have a few larger-print sentences per page, along with an associated illustration. They are at an early reader level so kids can feel the satisfaction of moving comfortably through the stories. so, child-friendly stories at just the right level make these a fantastic set of books for my son to enjoy.
We have the Frog and Toad puzzle game, and we like to tell the story of the two friends as we race to get to the finish line. While the concept of the game sounds nice, it never quite works as the instructions suggest. Nevertheless, we still have fun with it, in our own way.