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Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb

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4.22  ·  Rating Details ·  24,058 Ratings  ·  341 Reviews
Illus. in full color. A madcap band of dancing, prancing monkeys explain hands, fingers, and thumbs to beginning readers.
Hardcover, 36 pages
Published September 12th 1969 by Random House Books for Young Readers (first published 1969)
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The Cat in the Hat by Dr. SeussWhere the Wild Things Are by Maurice SendakFour is a little, Four is a LOT by Cheska KomissarIf You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe NumeroffGreen Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss
Books for four-year-old children
15th out of 402 books — 266 voters
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Books for three-year-old children
33rd out of 465 books — 339 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jim
Oct 22, 2014 Jim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I remember this one so well that I had to chant it aloud with a smile on my face. It's been a while. I got a couple of the dum ditty's & hum ditty's confused, but not bad after 20 years. I guess I read it A LOT for most of a decade. Cute pictures, too.

Marg bought 4 of these books for the upcoming grandmonster & asked me to mail them. I had to read them first. They're in a nifty 4"x6" thick cardboard format, unlike the ones we had for our kids. Hopefully harder for little fingers to tear.
Dustin Luke Nelson
I wanted to like "Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb." I'd heard the mumurs. Read the hype. EVERYONE has been talking about it. While it wasn't bad, it doesn't deliver on the hype.

I started off enjoying the book just fine. The first act is solid. Meandering a bit, maybe, but I was with Mr. Perkins. (Yeah, Perkins. Not Seuss. We'll get to that.) But then I get a little lost. The narrative thread is weak. As soon as you get to know one monkey they bring in another. Now, I'm not opposed to having a large
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Bam
Jul 08, 2016 Bam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My grandson loves the repetition of sounds.
J Austill
Sep 30, 2016 J Austill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book deserves 5 stars just from the sentimental value. It was one of two books that I bought for my daughter while she was in the womb and it was the very first book for her to become infatuated with.

It is a very simple book, with a great rhythm. It's about drumming and the words perfectly mimic drumming. For target ages, my daughter still loves it and she is 4 but she started liking it pretty much immediately after birth.

So, this is a great first book.
Aileen
Jun 23, 2015 Aileen rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children
I actually really enjoy this book.
Its rhyming is fun, repetitive and catchy and a little bit silly which all means my son has loved it ever since I started reading it to him (probably when he was about 6 months old) and aged four he still loves it (and knows it off by heart).

The reason it gets such a low rating is because the pictures, although great, are obviously of chimpanzees. Chimpanzees are not monkeys they are apes.

It annoys me every time I read it.

I do not believe in the primate nested
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Kellee
Trent loves this book so much, and we read it over and over, so I really should want to give it 4 or 5 stars, but.... GOSH DARN IT, THOSE AREN'T MONKEYS! THEY ARE APES! I'm sticking by my convictions and giving it only 3 stars!
R.
Dec 09, 2007 R. rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 1974-2002
The biological limitations of anthropoids. A hand, and another hand. Fingers on each. The thumb; the opposable thumb. An anatomy lesson for your little tommy, your little leslie and, ultimately, a primate primer, a reminder, por vous.
Suzanne
27 years later my kids can still recite the verses. My husband always found the last pages a disturbing image ....millions of fingers, millions of thumbs, millions of monkeys drumming on drums. A classic.
midnightfaerie
With Dr. Seuss like illustrations, the best part of this book was the rhyming rhythmic poetry that made the kids repeat every page. They added their own drumbeats by beating on the table and loved the bring colors that accompanied each page. One our whole family could enjoy.
Sean Gibson
Mar 23, 2015 Sean Gibson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book gets bonus points for being my son's first favorite book (granted, he was all of 12 months old at the time). This tome's got rhythm, though--I'll give it that...
Books Ring Mah Bell
Jul 20, 2008 Books Ring Mah Bell rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kidsbooks
hands play fiddles zum zum zum. hand in hand more monkeys come!

I hope someday my son will appreciate all the books I read to him.
Camille Ryckman
Brief summary - A monkey and his pals use his hands fingers and thumb to drum
Annotation - This book has a great amount of repetition and introduces body parts.
Age appropriateness 3-8 years
Connection to six early literacy skills
Vocabulary - This is a good way to introduce body parts.
Opinion - This is an average story but kids might like the visuals with the many monkeys drumming.
Dehlia
Nov 29, 2013 Dehlia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wee-ones
We read this over and over, sometimes with our drum and tambourine and sometimes without. Great rhythm!
Shannon
Aug 27, 2007 Shannon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my daughter's favorite book when she was little. I must have read it hundreds of times to her. Very fun to read.
Julene
Apr 06, 2009 Julene rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This one is way fun to read to kids. It has few words per page and is really rhythmic. Funny pictures. Love it.
Skylar Burris
Jan 08, 2008 Skylar Burris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens
This is one of those rare children's books I really don't mind reading over and over and over again, because it is so wonderfully rhythmic. I could chant it in my sleep.
Candice
Apr 04, 2009 Candice rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book when I was little. This one along with Chicka Chicka Boom Boom is a great way to read w/rhythm. My boys have all loved it as well.
Brittany
Jan 20, 2016 Brittany rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Alistair (15 months) drums along to this one and wanted to read it 3 times in a row so despite myself I'm giving it a 4.
Meghan Douglas
Apr 17, 2013 Meghan Douglas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children
This is my toddler son's absolute favourite book. The rythm is intoxicating, the story simple, and the illustrations engaging. Recommended for every toddler under the sun.
Alistair Parker
Apr 28, 2016 Alistair Parker rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i like about drams and i like the word it cllad dum ditty dum ditty dum dum dum

Ebster Davis
Nov 09, 2016 Ebster Davis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one that my little sister reads to my nieces. I wouldn't have liked it so much normally but she explained you got to read it emphatically and kind of act it out and kids get a real kick out of it.
I guess that's like a lot of kid's books. I love how it's completely developmentally appropriate for it's intended audience, and I think it's a very engaging aid for kid's learning language with an adult.

I recommend this book for kid's ages 2-6 and their parents.
Susan
Nov 20, 2016 Susan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this for the first time yesterday and I thought it was going to be really stupid because the drawings are, well, kind of meh. But my kid looooved it. And the repetition of sounds and the rhyming are good! He made me read it to him at least 3 times in a row. I think I can recite it from memory now.
Jennifer
Nov 12, 2016 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another one I read while babysitting. Still just as much fun as when I read it to my own kids. Love the rhythms!
Sidney
This book is an awesome Dr. Seuss book for toddlers. It has a lot of alliterations starting with the letter D. The monkey does silly things like beat on a drum and blow his nose. My niece loves this book and loves to say the silly words. This is also a fun book to read to kids because there are a lot of words that you can act out like blow, whack, and strum.
Brooke Leone
Mar 29, 2015 Brooke Leone rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Again Dr. Seuss did an amazing job with this book. This is not something I would recommend to someone older than 1st grade, because of all the Dr. Seuss books I have ever read I think this may be the most simple one- definitely written for early readers. The text is filled with onomatopoeia, which is very helpful to young readers. The illustrations are also very different than what Dr. Seuss has done in some of his more poplar books but that doesn't make this any less of a good book.

This book i
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Jonathan Fifer
Oct 31, 2015 Jonathan Fifer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book, like the Dr. Seuss books that it is obviously based on, is more focused on fun rhyming poems than having a coherent story. Each page has rhymes about monkeys, the instruments they play, and variations of "dum ditty dum ditty dum dum dum." It slowly escalates from just one monkey to millions of monkeys, and is genuinely silly and fun.
I read this book to a small group of three year olds (including the one I'm observing), and it seemed to be a hit. The children seemed to like the rhythm
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Marshall
Oct 16, 2008 Marshall rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People with hands and fingers
At first glance, you think this is a Dr. Seuss book. But it ain't. However, it does have that Suessian-beatnik-I-grok-kids'-imaginations-and-words-that-rhyme feel about it. I don't know how we got it. Books have a way of just appearing on our daughter's book shelves or in unstable stacks beside our bed.

If Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb has more than 40 words in it - 40 different words - I'll eat my hat. You get a lot of "hands" and "fingers" and "thumbs" - duh, look at the title. But there's also a
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Amy Forrester
This book is full of fingers, hands, drums, and monkeys. First, just a few monkeys playing drums, then crowds of monkeys, and then millions of monkeys in a riotous drumming celebration! There are big monkeys, small monkeys, monkeys with banjos, and monkeys with fiddles.

Much like Go, Dog, Go!, this beginner reader is more concerned with repetition of words than it is with plot. Although it’s meant to be a book for early readers to read on their own, it’s fun to read to younger kids as well. Kids
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Dree Kinder
Mar 22, 2015 Dree Kinder rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb by Al Perkins is a children's book for beginners. The book is written in a language that is meant for younger children. It includes rhyming, which is an interactive and fun way for children to get engaged in a book. Perkins does a great job with using fun words and being repetitive throughout the book. The phrase "Dum ditty, Dum ditty, Dum dum dum" is used repetitively throughout the book. Children are able to relate to this phrase each time it occurs in the book.

The i
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Al Perkins is an author of several children's books, including the ever-popular Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb (1969), The Digging-est Dog (1967), and The Ear Book (1968).He also wrote early titles in the Beginner Books and Bright and Early series.
More about Al Perkins...

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