McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – Walk on the Wild Side

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – Walk on the Wild Side

Written by: Nicholas Oldland
Illustrated by: Nicholas Oldland
Series: Life in the Wild

This clever picture book tells readers right away what to expect. “There once was a bear, a moose and a beaver who loved adventure. But sometimes their competitive natures got in the way of having fun.” One day, the three set off to climb a mountain together. But on the way there, they decide to make it more exciting by turning the climb into a race to the top. It’s only after being sidelined by a series of mishaps — a boulder tumbling down the path, the moose hanging off the side of the cliff, the bear hanging off the moose hanging off the side of the cliff — that the three friends realize competitions don’t always make for a good time. “At the end of the day, the bear, the moose and the beaver agreed that reaching the top of the mountain was great, but enjoying the journey together was even better.”

This funny, contemporary fable is from Nicholas Oldland’s popular Life in the Wild series. The wonderful fun here is the comedy that highlights the adventure, in both the dry humor of the text as well as the simple, earth-toned illustrations that provide a humorous visual play-by-play of the action. This would make a terrifically entertaining storytime title, easily promoting the importance of teamwork, kindness and friendship. It could also be used in the early grades as part of a classroom discussion of woodland animals and their habitats. Another lesson here is the pleasure of getting outdoors for recreation.

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – The Tale of Sir Dragon

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – The Tale of Sir Dragon

Written by: Jean E. Pendziwol
Illustrated by: Martine Gourbault
Series: Dragon Safety Series

Setting out from Camp Camelot in search of a noble quest, a girl and her dragon friend cross swords with a bully of a knight. The bully says the dragon is too big, tall and green to play knights.

Suddenly, playtime is spoiled. The girl stands up for the dragon, but the other bystanders let the bully do as he pleases. It’s time for a petition to the king! After a roundtable discussion, the bully comes to accept that everyone has a right to play — no matter how big, tall or green they are!

This winning combination of adventure and information provides the perfect starting point for discussions about bullying. The Tale of Sir Dragon: Dealing with Bullies for Kids (and Dragons) offers a constructive approach to an important subject.

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – Once Upon a Dragon

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – Once Upon a Dragon

Written by: Jean E. Pendziwol
Illustrated by: Martine Gourbault
Series: Dragon Safety Series

After a thump-bumping ride on a slide, a little girl and her dragon friend find themselves inside a fairy-tale book. The stories are familiar, and there’s lots of silly fun as the dragon is transformed into fairy-tale characters. But danger lurks in the form of strangers — including the hungry wolf from “Little Red Riding Hood” and Snow White’s evil stepmother. And it’s up to the girl to keep an eye on the dragon, who walks alone through deep dark woods and takes treats from people he doesn’t know. Little by little, the girl teaches her irrepressible friend to be careful about strangers.

The winning combination of fairy-tale adventure and concrete safety information — including the Dragon’s Stranger Safety Rhyme and the checklist of rules at the end of the book — provide the perfect starting point for discussions with children about stranger safety.

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – A Treasure at Sea for Dragon and Me

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – A Treasure at Sea for Dragon and Me

Written by: Jean E. Pendziwol
Illustrated by: Martine Gourbault
Series: Dragon Safety Series

Fun and safety go hand in hand as a little girl and a dragon spend a hot summer day at the beach. The two friends build castles in the sand, splash and swim, and race a boatload of pirates to a hidden treasure. As they play, the girl teaches her irrepressible friend to be water smart.

The winning combination of adventure and safety information — including The Dragon’s Water Safety Rhyme and the checklist of rules at the end of the book — provide the perfect starting point for safety discussions.

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – No Dragons for Tea

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McDonald’s Happy Meal Books – No Dragons for Tea

Written by: Jean E. Pendziwol
Illustrated by: Martine Gourbault
Series: Dragon Safety Series

While out for a walk with her mom, a little girl has the surprise of her life — she meets a real, live, fire-breathing dragon! Now this dragon is nothing to be afraid of — in fact, he’s so friendly that she invites him home for tea. But their afternoon snack is suddenly interrupted when the dragon sneezes and sets the table ablaze. Luckily, the girl knows just what to do, and she teaches her new friend to be fire smart, too.

With its funny, rhyming verse and spunky illustrations, Dragons for Tea shows kids that learning about fire safety doesn’t have to be scary. The story ends with “The Dragon’s Fire Safety Rhyme” — a fun and easy way to remember what to do in case of fire.

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