Ladybug’s Birthday is a SidebySide book originally published in 1998 by Scholastic Books. Thirty pages in length, it is written by Steve Metzger and illustrated by James Williamson.
The following review, up until the ‘Parent’s Perspective’ was written by six year-old reviewer Baby Girl. Typos are intentionally left in for us to look back on together later.
When it was Lady Bug’s Birthday her fireds kep on letting Bug come when its not there partey when they whent to her party’s and play day’s. and at the end they all started to fite. and they trid to make it more beter and the bees gave her huny to eat and the Butterfly’s fand her next the spiders made Spider web chers then the cerikits made songs to triy to fix it but then it worked.
My name is Babby Girl and my faverit part was when they made her happy agan. the book was adout a Bugs Birthday. and also the pichers were cerativ to me.
This is the first SidebySide book that we own and although I can’t remember how we got it, I’m quite happy with the way the book is structured. With two children about a year and a half apart, it means that I have one just starting to learn how to read and one who is really getting the hang of the “smaller font” type of books. He can read the large, short text on the left while she can read the smaller print story on the right.
The story centers around Ladybug’s birthday party and Ladybug has invited two guests over for a small little party in her home. She frets about how her home is too small to host any more than the two she invited. Unfortunately, not everything goes as planned, as her two original butterfly guests invite more bugs to her party without asking for permission. Not wanting a larger party, Ladybug is forced to invite in more and more bugs as word spreads around about her party.
Soon her home is full of bugs and the tight space makes it hot and Ladybug doesn’t have nearly as much food as she needs. Eventually breaking down over the stress of “the worst birthday party ever”, her friends soon see that they need to cheer her up. Each set of bugs contributes in their own way to fixing the party with the butterflies flapping their wings to cool everyone down, the fireflies providing more light, the spiders by weaving more chairs, the bees by giving honey to eat, and the crickets by playing music for the party.
The book has bright, cheerful, and cute illustrations and the story teaches children the rudeness of crashing a party, the importance of being sensitive to the feelings of those around you, and cooperation assisting in conflict resolution. It’s been a fun book to read to the kids before bed and I know they both enjoy singing Happy Birthday to Ladybug at the end.