Noah's Ark, c.1

by Peter Spier

Hardcover, 1977


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Call number

E Sp c.1


Doubleday Books for Young Readers (1977), Edition: 1, Hardcover, 48 pages


Retells in pictures how a pair of every manner of creature climbed on board Noah's ark and thereby survived the Flood.

Local notes


User reviews

LibraryThing member 530nm330hz
This stunning imagining of what life would have been like on Noah's ark is beautiful, imaginative, at time humorous. Excepting a poem at the beginning and biblical verses bookending the story, it is told entirely in pictures.
LibraryThing member lp118825
This book really shows the story of Noah's Ark as it really was. My family is really religious, so I was so exicted to see that he liked it so much! It had alot of color, imaginiation, and is a wonderful picture book!
LibraryThing member srssrs
Peter Spier is an author and an illustrator, and a maybe little known fact about this man is that he spent time in Theresienstadt during WW 2. On the first page of Noah's Ark, in the background is a picture of a burning town with an army moving across the foreground. The text reads "...But Noah
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found grace in the eyes of the Lord." This could have a double meaning, for Mr. Spier regarding his experiences during the 1940s. A few pages later, Mr. Spier has included as an introduction a translated Dutch poem (1586-1658) The Flood. The rest of the book, until the very last page is just ilustrations. On the last page, the first comment is finished ...and he planted a vineyard." Peter Spier's "Noah's Ark" reminds me of the purpose of stained glass windows in cathedrals. The scenes in the windows were created to explain the Bible many could not read. The illustrations in "Noah's Ark" are so detailed they don't need a supporting text. They are beautiful watercolors telling a story to an emerging reader.
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LibraryThing member MarthaL
Detailed illustrations will fascinate the kids who enjoy hidden picture books. A line of text and a full page spread of Noah in a vineyard before the title page begin the story.. The first or second page is the 16th century rythme, "The Flood" by Jacobus Revius. "High and long, thick and strong,
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wide and stark, was the ark. Climb on board, said the Lord. Noah's kin clambered in......This mainly wordless book ends with the words...and he planted a vineyard.
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LibraryThing member IEliasson
Peter Spier’s Noah’s Ark is a wordless and gentle retelling of the Bible story of Noah and his ark of animals rendered in watercolor and ink drawings. Spier evokes the forty days and nights of the great flood with washes of gray and blue soaking the pages. The parade of animal pairs is depicted
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more realistically than most, revealing the chaos of the animal exodus and the sorrow of the animals left behind. Noah as animal caretaker is accentuated, as well as the accumulating detritus of the voyage. The prelude and outcome of the voyage are literally the endpapers of this book; thus Noah’s Ark portrays the arduous and wearying passage of the protracted voyage and its affect on Noah and his animal passengers.
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LibraryThing member icedchai
Genre: This book is a good example of a legend. It is a narrative of Noah's family, which is based off of the historical story of his ark. In the end, Noah is like a hero, which also makes this a legend) because he saved his family and 2 of each animal.

Setting: The author created the setting as
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integral. This well known event had to specifically occur on a boat because of the flood. However, where the boat was built and where it landed doesn't matter as much because it would not add or detract from the story. As long as it were places that never got rain, it could have happened anywhere.

Age: Primary (no words)
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LibraryThing member Kaberasturi
Caldecott Medal. Noah's Ark presents a poem with a traditional rendition of the tale of Noah's Ark at the beginning and then displays many vivid pictures of the ark and the animals residing upon it. The central issues this book could touch on are community and heroism. This book could be used in
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Pre-K through 2nd grade class rooms or 3rd and 4th and basis' for cvriticval thinking exercises.
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LibraryThing member jcwilcox
This book was interesting, there weren't a lot of words. The book was mainly very detailed illustrations. I liked it because it would keep cildrens interest. You can do a read aloud with this book and have great discussions and observations from kids where they can use their imaginations. Simple
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yet complex meaning throughout.
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LibraryThing member debrasw
Summary: this is a story book depicting Noah building the ark and having all the animals come onto the boat. It was kind of sad because at one point you could see all the animals left behind because Noah could only take 2 of each. It had the rains come and the floods take over, and then Noah finds
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dry land and his family is safe.

Genre: I am not sure what i would call this, if I am a christian and believe this to be true, then i would call it informational, if i am not a Christian, I would call this fantasy. So i will go with informational. This was a good informational book because it did a great job of depicting how the ark was built and what it would have looked like with all of the animals.

Plot: The plot starts climbing slowly as Noah builds the ark and you wonder why, and then you see the animals. It keeps climbing as the rains come and then it climaxes when they find land. Then all the animals go free and it ends resolved at a nice low point.

media: watercolor and ink
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LibraryThing member raizel
The bulk of the this book consists of cartoon-like pictures telling the story of Noah and the ark,
but there is a poem translated from the Dutch by the illustrator about the story shown in three columns on one page.
LibraryThing member amanda.h
Summary: This book tells the traditional story of Noah and the ark through pictures. It starts off with Noah building the ark, and then it shows several different animals getting onto it two by two as it starts to flood. After the flood is over, the animals get off of the ark and on to dry land and
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the sun comes out.

Personal Reaction: This variation was a little boring, nothing that I think would hold the children’s attention well, the pictures and the colors were muted. The overall illustrations told the story well though.
Classroom Extension:
1) This would be a good story to use for introducing multiplications of two's.
2) It would also be a good book to use when going over the different types on animals.
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LibraryThing member panfeng1115
This book is interesting, even there is no many words. But the illustrations is so particular to tell everything happens. children can understand everything from the picture.
LibraryThing member Macylynn
This is a Caldecott Winner book and it had mainly pictures. This book explains in details, using pictures, the story of Noah's Ark. It starts out with Noah gathering each animal two-by-two and loading them into their places on his huge wood boat. As the rain starts he shuts the door and the
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rain continues and floods the Earth, and he takes care of the animals on the boat. Noah worked hard to maintain all these animals, just think it was two of every kind in the world! He fed them, watered them, scooped up trash, and waited paitently for the flood to stop. When it stopped he sent out a dove everyday to check the Earth, and when the dove came back with an Olive branch in his claws Noah knew the Earth was dry and producing life again. Noah then unloaded all the animals and his family and they began to repopulate the Earth... "and he planted a vineyard."

Personal Reaction:
The reason I picked this book was because I love this story in the Bible and to see the pictures so vivid it was awesome! I enjoyed "reading" this because it was nice to make my own assumptions and words in my head as I looked at the wonderful pictures. It's an amzazing story that really did take place in history and I enjoyed looking into this book.

Classroom Extension Ideas:
1. One thing you could do to get children's imaginations flowing is to have them look at the pictures and write their own words to each page as though they are writing this book! Then have each child share their version of the story.
2. The art is very beautiful in this book, and I think it would be a great time to do a watercolor lesson. I could introduce painting animals, land, and people.
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LibraryThing member scote23
Caldecott Medal, 1978

Finally, one with pictures I actually like! This one tells the story of Noah, with a poem at the beginning and then the pictures are wordless until the end. I quite like it.
LibraryThing member Phill242
Caldecott, 1978
Poem in the front about the flood, then a wordless representation of the flood story.
LibraryThing member bp0128bd
Caldecott, 1978
Poem in the front about the flood, then a wordless representation of the flood story.
LibraryThing member BookConcierge
A seventeenth-century Dutch poem by Jacobus Revius is the inspiration for this gloriously detailed picture book, which earned a Caldecott Medal. Spier translated the poem which mentions
“Cow and moose,
Hare and goose,
Sheep and ox,
Bee and fox…”
The poem, itself, is on page 1, but the story
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really begins on the front inside cover and flyleaf, with a two-page panoramic spread that shows destruction of a village in the distance, while Noah and his family prosper on a hillside and the words “…But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.”

This is followed by two more “double truck” pictorial panoramas showing the construction of the ark, while a parade of villagers streams past, and the stacks of provisions ready to be loaded aboard, before the poem is printed.

The rest of the book is entirely pictorial. And these are wonderful illustrations! I poured over them, noticing the pairs of different animals, and marveling at the minute details he included. There are even pairs of spiders, scorpions, dodos and echidnas! The big cats are carefully crated before being loaded aboard the Ark. Mrs Noah is obviously unhappy about the mice and creepy-crawlies. The animals and people left behind are slowly engulfed by the rising waters, as is the landscape.

I especially liked how Spier showed the work involved in caring for this menagerie … feeding the animals, mucking out stalls, providing water. Noah and his family members are delighted when new chicks hatch, or puppies are born, but visibly tired and worn as time passes and the rains continue. By the time the dove returns with the olive branch the people and animals are all equally relieved that their ordeal will soon be over. The elephants are first off, followed by a parade of animals and people. The slow-pokes – turtles and snails are the last to depart. The final panoramic spread, composing the back inside cover, shows the miraculous rainbow, and Noah on a hillside “…and he planted a vineyard.”

What I particularly appreciate about this richly drawn book is that it will allow children to use their imaginations to tell the story of what is happening in each panel. I don’t have any little ones in my life, but I want to go out and buy this book so I can look at the pictures again and again to my heart’s content.
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LibraryThing member Whisper1
Interestingly, the book, with the exception of the opening page, is all illustrations. The text/poem titled The Flood by Jacobs Revious 1586-1658, is noted, and part of the text includes the following:

"Pair by pair,
Gross and fair,
All that walked.
Crawled or stalked
On dry earth
Found a berth.
But the
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Worst and Best,
Stayed on shore
Were no More"

Page after page has crowded photos of both the humans and the animals who were on the ark. The images note a very crowded amount of animals in a limited amount of space.
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LibraryThing member KristenRoper
I have a love of all things Noah's Ark, and this is a standout "retelling". Spier's book starts with a translated Dutch poem, but the rest of the book is wordless. In place of prose are detailed, imaginative drawings that capture that ups and downs of the narrative. There's so much to look at and
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laugh over for both children and adults. Top of my list are the unique holding areas for different types of animals and the messes they leave behind! #relatable C definitely prefers books with words, but still spends a lot of time studying the images and reading the storyline in them.
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National Book Award (Finalist — 1982)
Caldecott Medal (Medal Winner — 1978)
IBBY Honour Book (Illustration — 1980)
Flicker Tale Award (Nominee — Picture Books — 1987)


Original publication date


Physical description

48 p.; 10.77 inches


0385094736 / 9780385094733


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