Sunday, July 27, 2014

Review: Dale, Dale, Dale/Hit It, Hit It, Hit It

Title: Dale, Dale, Dale: Una fiesta de numeros/Hit It, Hit It, Hit It: A Fiesta of Numbers
Author: René Saldaña, Jr.
Illustrator: Carolyn Dee Flores
Publisher: Piñata Books
Pages: 32
Availability: On shelves now
Review Copy: A final copy was provided by the publisher

Summary: “Today is my birthday, and I am so excited. / One piñata filled with candy. / Two hours until the party. / Three tables set for all of the guests.” Mateo counts to twelve as he anticipates the fun he’ll have at his party! There will be family, friends and lots of goodies for the children: tops, marbles and even toy cars! But before the children can hit the piñata, they will sing the birthday boy a song and enjoy eating a delicious cake. And then Mateo will be “the happiest boy in the whole wide world,” because he gets to swing at the piñata first with everyone cheering him on: ¡Dale! ¡Dale! ¡Dale! -- Cover image and summary via publisher

Review: Dale, Dale, Dale is a counting book with a birthday setting. My favorite illustration is when Mateo counts five lucha libre masks. I think that will be a selling point with my students since they loved reading Niño Wrestles the World. Like many counting books, there isn't a whole lot of storyline happening, but it is still fun. Most children can relate to being excited about a birthday celebration. I think it would be great to read this along with Just a Minute by Yuyi Morales since that is also a birthday counting book.

The illustrations are bright and engaging. They totally make me smile. Of course, it would be difficult to read this without feeling the urge to hit a piñata so that would be the perfect extension activity - especially if readers count the swings.

Another plus is that the book is completely bilingual. The piñata song does lose a little in the translation to English though. It definitely sounds best in Spanish. I would have liked the music to go along with the book since I didn't know how the song goes, but there are many videos on YouTube that helped me that could also be used with students.

I will be happy to share this with my primary grade students. It's sure to bring smiles.


  1. Hey, Crystal: thanks for the cool review. I'll pass the link on to Carolyn, who actually wrote music for the English lyrics, I think. Of course, we didn't publish the music in the book, nor did we add a short essay explaining piñatas, etc. But I like how you figured how to share that with the kids, too: YouTubing it. Absolutely love her illustrations. Thanks again. Hello to your children.

    1. Thanks for writing such a fun counting book. Thanks also for the greetings. My students will enjoy seeing your message. :)