Alfie Gets in First

by Hughes, Shirley. (Mulberry, 1981 ISBN 0688070361. Out of Print.) Picture Book. 32 pages. Grades PreK+.
This book was reviewed by Carol Otis Hurst in Teaching K-8 Magazine.


This is one of a series of books about Alfie, an irrepressible pre-schooler, who lives with his mother and Annie Rose, his baby sister, in a London attached house. Other books in the series are: Alfie's Feet, An Evening at Alfie's, and Alfie Gives a Hand. In this tiny volume, Alfie and his family are returning home from shopping. His mother unlocks the door and then goes back outside to get the baby and the groceries. Alfie rushes in and slams the door which locks, leaving his mother outside. From that point on, the gutter of the book is the door and we can watch the action from both sides at once. One by one neighbors and authorities gather outside and, on the other side, Alfie's emotions range from glee, through fear to confidence -- all observable on his very expressive face.

Children might like to identify each of those emotions as a vocabulary or discussion source. They could even become a graphing activity if you measure the degree of worry Alfie experiences at each point of the story.

Eight pages of the book can work like a flip book. Turning them quickly makes a sort of animation take place as the anxious people gather with solutions for the problem.


Related Areas of Carol Hurst's Children's Literature Site


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