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Tanka Tanka Skunk!

4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  473 Ratings  ·  73 Reviews
Rhyming has never been so much fun as in Steve Webb's bold, new picture book, which encourages children to read aloud, following the easy and catchy rhythm of the text.

"Skunka Tanka
Skunka Tanka
Tanka Tanka Skunk!
They've got the beat, and so do their friends."

"Meet Tanka and his friend, Skunk. When you say their names together, they sound like drums!"

Steve Webb's innovative
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published June 1st 2004 by Orchard (first published August 18th 2003)
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Grace Abwooli
Nov 02, 2012 Grace Abwooli rated it it was amazing
Tanka Tanka Skunk by Steve Webb is one of my personal favourites. Tanka is the elephant and his friend Skunka a skunk. The book doesn’t follow a story or plot of some sort, but is more about words, musicality and rhythm.

The illustrations are vibrant, colourful and eye catching. Also, the background stripes are cleverly designed to help keep the beat as one reads. The book also teaches children the names of different animals such as: panda, panther, tiger, zebra, alligator, fox, tiny little hair
Tharema Alim
Jul 16, 2013 Tharema Alim rated it it was amazing
Tanka Tanka skunk written by Steve Webb was a book I was introduced to when I was working in a primary school and I used it in my phonics lessons when teaching them syllables. It is filled with pictures of different animals and insects such as polar bear, tiger and caterpillar, and it captivates the reader with all the different colours and also helps them learn the different animals at the same time.
The book starts off with “stamp your feet to the skunka tanka beat”, in which you have to stamp
Nasima Begum
Oct 04, 2011 Nasima Begum rated it it was amazing
I'm an adult and i loved this book! It made me want to read the book out aloud with the rhythm. This book is very good! It's about an elephant called Tanka and skunk called Skunka. It goes through the book with lots of different animals and in some pages what noises some animals make. The book is a musical genre book, full of rhythm and how to use syllables. It is very visual and colourful. I liked that it was fun to read and i think children will engage with this book. It meets one of the Key S ...more
May 13, 2014 M.J. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I saw this and just had to write a review for it. It's been years since I first read this and to this day, I can still quote loads of it (I know, perhaps now the best endorsement when it has so few words in its!) However, my kids loved it, and I loved it. So please, give it a chance and then, in ten years time, you'll still be quoting pages of it!! My favourite line is 'ant eater, ant eater, BIG BLUE WHALE' said in a very LOUD VOICE!
Aug 20, 2008 Rebecca rated it really liked it
This is all about words as rhythm and is great fun to read out loud. Keep in mind for learning syllables, reading with rhythm sticks or drums, and using with a music & movement program. If you know anyone who plays the tabla or "talking drum," that would be an amazing tie-in.
I'm a big fan of using shakers to accompany at least one book or song during my storytimes and this book is perfect for just that purpose. The cover says "Stamp your feet to the Skunka Tanka beat!" This book takes advantage of the rhythms and syllables of different words and turns them into a fun interactivity. The cover encourages you to stamp along, but you can grab shakers or rattles and shake along, or you can get all creative and make your own noise maker and play along with the prose: "Cat ...more
Roger DeBlanck
Feb 01, 2012 Roger DeBlanck rated it it was amazing
Tanka Tanka Skunk! by author and illustrator Steve Webb makes superb use of musicality to accompany vivid and amazing illustrations. Tanka (an elephant) and Skunka (a skunk) play drums. Webb repeats the rhythmic tune that the two characters play throughout the book: “Skunka Tanka/ Skunka Tanka/ Tanka Tanka Skunk.” Then he moves on to other beats using an assortment of different animals. He shows how kangaroo has three beats and caterpillar has four: “Kang – ga – roo” and “Cat – er – pil – lar.” ...more
May 06, 2008 Anne rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books, 2008
CIP: none
Summary: A picture book full of rhythm and animals in clever combinations.

Review: This is a fabulous book! It very cleverly combines animal names and delightful pictures in a rhythmic beat that will have toddlers and preschoolers chanting along with a smile on their face. Perfect for people who want to put music type materials into their storytime without actual singing. Also, challenges the reader to repeat the book, but *faster*!!

SLJ says: "Storytime audiences will revel in the beat"
Tim Protiva
An innovative and visually stunning picture book uses animal names to introduce rhythmic language and rhyme, as Tanka the elephant and his friend Skunk play drums to keep the beat. Steve Webb's innovative and visually stunning picture book introduces young readers to simple rhythms with this riot of shout-out-loud words and cavorting animals. A great way to teach children about syllables while clapping along.
Apr 08, 2014 Fjóla rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: toddlers, read aloud
At first I was a bit perplexed by this book. My son read it to me, and he giggled at it, but nothing made much sense. But when I took a second look at it, I got it. It's a great rhythmic read aloud, and if you liked Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb, you should like this one equally. Full of onomatopoeia, it's actually quite the clever book.
Amy Forrester
Mar 07, 2014 Amy Forrester rated it it was amazing
Tanka, an elephant, and his friend Skunk love to beat out a crazy rhythm using the names of all their friends, from llama to lemur, bear to cat-er-pil-lar. This is a great addition to a storytime about phonological awareness or vocabulary. Rhythmic text and a fun refrain make this a rollicking read aloud.

Read More at Picture-Book-a-Day:
Kathy Morrison
Jun 27, 2007 Kathy Morrison rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: teachers, friends, moms
Shelves: classroombooks
This rhyming book uses animal names to create rhythm patterns that are silly and repetitive. Great fun for a regular story time, body percussion activity, or drum circles. Recommended to me by a Mom who uses it at home with her 3 children (5, 3, 1) and they read it almost every day! Plus, she has a gathering drum at home they include for the ultimate home experience.
Apr 22, 2016 Theresa rated it really liked it
Tanka Tanka Skunk!
by Steve Webb
Spent the week reading this to kindergarten, first grade and second grade, in music class. Its a book that shows rhythm, and syllables. Similar in nature to a Dr Seuss book because of the rhyme schema but but it does show rhythm. You can chant the entire book, using rhythm patterns of the words to teach rhythm. the kids had fun following the words.
Katrina Dombrowsky
Jul 08, 2014 Katrina Dombrowsky rated it really liked it
The rhythm and fun, tongue twister-like words make this a great read-aloud. It would be fun to have the kids pat along to the “chorus,” or have drums to beat every time the "Tanka Tanka Skunk" part comes up, but I'm not sure the younger set would quite get it… This one would probably be better for an older group.
Sep 29, 2014 Angela rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
i used this one for memory care story hour. Even if the drawings a cartoonish, it worked with the fun of the book. Not only did the circleaudience enjoy a satisfyingly memorable phrase to repeat, they got some good out of the rhythm instruments I brought to accompany it. I'd highly recommend trying this one for some laughs with a wild animal theme. Wordplay.
Feb 11, 2016 Jill rated it really liked it
This one is so much fun! This is great for the "sing" practice, because it has such a strong rhythm. Children can clap or stamp along with the syllables, and the storyteller can really emphasize each syllable of the animal names, to help children hear the language better than they might in normal conversation.
Jul 25, 2011 Laura rated it it was amazing
Recommended to me by two children's librarians, Tanka Tanka Skunk is one of the most fun toddler books I've read. The page backgrounds have different solid colors, the black font is fun, and the cartoon-like pictures are adorable. The text doesn't tell a story, but plays with the fun of words, including rhymes and beats. Great for a toddler or pre-school storytime.
Amanda Parker
Sep 27, 2012 Amanda Parker rated it it was amazing
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this book! One of the best for read-aloud, storytime, or fun with kids of any age! Well written and fun to read, I've read it so many times that I can get though the whole thing in 33 seconds! Yes I've timed myself- so fun!
Mar 14, 2010 Melanie rated it liked it
Shelves: virginia-s-books
This is a great book. Nice simple pictures, easy and fun to read. It takes several times through to get the rythm of it all down. I think my baby will like it even more when she's older. It's a lot of fun now, but I think she'll just love it in a year or two.
Oct 10, 2011 Tricia rated it really liked it
What a hit this was in storytime...not just with the kids but also with the adults. Animal names become rhymes with a repeating visit from Tanka (elephant) and Skunk. Fun to read, fun to build audience participation.
Destinee Sutton
Jun 22, 2009 Destinee Sutton rated it really liked it
There's no story here, just a kind of rhythmic chant using animal names. It's pretty fun. Should you choose to read this to young ones, though, I warn you that it could go on forever because the last page says to read it again only faster.
Jan 06, 2014 Helen rated it it was amazing
A perfect read-aloud book for exploring rhythm and rhyme with preschoolers using familiar and less familiar animal names. We love repeating each page, and then starting all over again, faster this time! Works really well in a group too (using clapping/tapping to mark the beats)
May 08, 2008 Jennifer rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: story time
Recommended to Jennifer by: Stefanie
Everyone should drop everything and run out and read this book. You'll spend the rest of the day thinking, "skunka tanka, skunka tanka, skunka tanka, SKUNK." And really, what more can you really ask for? I mean, it does have a beat....
Miss Sarah
Mar 18, 2016 Miss Sarah rated it it was ok
This one didn't grab me like I hoped it would but still a solid book Tanka the elephant and skunk like to bang out names on their drums, their own and other animals. They form a beat and work with syllables on their drums with all the names.
Library Quine
Not a huge amount of story but fantastic musicality and rhythm. The book features two main characters, Tanka (elephant) and Shunk. When you read their names together they sound like drums. The ideal book to get little ones shaking their shakers.
Dearborn Public Library Youth Services
This is a great book for young pre-K through 3rd grade. The rhythm grabs the litter kids and the older kids see the syllables. It's a very active, get on your feet and stomp book. Hightly recommended.
"Skunka Tanka Skunk Tanka Tanka Tanka skunk!" The silliness and rhythm of this book makes it a crowd pleaser. Clapping the syllables is a fantastic pre-literacy exercise that makes learning almost effortless. Great book.
Mar 03, 2015 Kristy rated it really liked it
This book is so much fun! I used it during my drums storytime. Kids get to learn all about syllables, rhythm, animals, and singing all in one book! I would sing a page, and then I would point to the pictures and have the kids sing back to me. So much fun!

Great for Pre-K and K storytime.
Jul 16, 2009 Valerie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: storytime-td-ps
perfect for a rhythm and rhyme theme - don't be afraid to get out the rhythm sticks and have the kids beat out the syllables as you read this one. Great for toddlers to learn clapping out beats or for preschoolers and beginning readers to get the rhythm.
Feb 19, 2010 jacky rated it liked it
This was read today at story time. Our librarian read it through a few times, faster each time. It was clear she had some practice! It really teaches about rhythm and let kids play with rhythm. I also liked the variety of animals used, not just your usual farm animals.
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tank tanka 1 6 Jun 27, 2007 08:33PM  
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