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Created by the Vermont Center for the Book, Mother Goose Asks "Why?" is a unique blend of literature and science designed to help families of preschool children use thought-provoking picture books, activities and discussion to understand the process skills of science.

Mother Goose Asks "Why?" books such as Ed Young's Seven Blind Mice strengthen observation skills, while books such as Pamela Allen's Who Sank the Boat? introduce concepts such as buoyancy. The books and activities are appropriate for children ages 3 - 7.

Each Mother Goose Asks "Why?" program includes a set of books (listed below), an activity guide, a science kit, and a canvas bag.

Seven Blind Mice by Ed Young
Two Bad Ants by Chris Van Allsburg
The Doorbell Rang by Pat Hutchins*
Who Sank the Boat? by Pamela Allen
Nobody Owns the Sky by Reeve Lindbergh
The Glorious Flight by Alice and Martin Provensen
Albert's Alphabet by Leslie Tryon
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle*
Home Lovely by Lynne Rae Perkins

* available in Spanish

Mother Goose Asks “Why?” at the Pennsylvania Center for the Book at Penn State began in the winter with planning meetings and preliminary discussions with representatives of our first site—Centre County. In addition, Mother Goose Asks “Why?” became a featured part of our Pennsylvania Center for the Book presentations around the Commonwealth, as a promotion of the Center’s statewide approach to our broad mission and as a means of informing regional and local agencies about our new role in MGAW.

Preliminary planning began in February with Lauren Haag (Manager, Central Intermediate Unit Family Services, Central Region School-Age Child Care Project, Even Start Family Literacy Program, Education for Homeless Children & Youth and Pennsylvania Family Literacy Summer Reading Program) and Ann Walker (Director, CCIS of Centre County, Child Care Options), our Centre County (site I) contacts.

Our first training session took place in State College, Pennsylvania on April 27th with 15 participants attending.

Our second training, the Reading program, was on September 23, 2002. In addition to the Reading Public Library, the main institutional programs providing trainees will be the Migrant Education Program and the Reading School District. Efforts are underway to focus on Spanish as a second language with an additional (bilingual) trainer.

For more information, or for additional kits to use with your local training, write a letter or email to Jen Spence, 510 Paterno Library, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802-1812, call 814-865-0401, or visit



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last updated 11/11/05
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