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Make Way for Ducklings

4.21  ·  Rating Details  ·  65,998 Ratings  ·  1,033 Reviews
This classic tale of the famous Mallard ducks of Boston is available for the first time in a full-sized paperback edition. Awarded the Caldecott Medal in 1942, Make Way for Ducklings has been described as "one of the merriest picture books ever" (The New York Times). Ideal for reading aloud, this book deserves a place of honor on every child's bookshelf.
Hardcover, 64 pages
Published September 10th 2001 by Viking Juvenile (first published 1941)
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Make Way for Ducklings begins with Mr. and Mrs. Mallard looking for a place to call home so they can settle down and start a family. After flying around and rejecting locations for various reasons, Mr. and Mrs. Mallard take a break and land at the Boston Public Garden. Most of their experiences at the BPG are promising, but after both nearly get run over by a child on a bicycle, Mrs. Mallard decides it would not be the ideal place to start a family — at least not yet. So Mr. and Mrs. Mallard end ...more
This is probably one of my all time favorites. I live near Boston and am very familiar with the Public Garden. They have installed "Make Way for Duckling" sculptures there which any visitor to Boston might enjoy seeing.
Aug 19, 2013 midnightfaerie rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens
I'm a big fan of McCloskey ever since I read the Homer books when I was a kid. So I was pleasantly surprised to find this book in our school supplies for our charter school this year. Nice to see some diversity in the language arts lesson plans. Unfortunately, (or rather fortunately), my 5 yr old tested out of Kindergarten and into first grade, so we'll be sending the materials back and waiting for our first grade materials. In the meantime, I'm going through and reading all the books to the kid ...more
Kristine Hansen
Aug 06, 2015 Kristine Hansen rated it it was amazing
This kind of book is comfort food to me. I read it many times as a child, and then read it countless times to my own children. The illustrations are soft and gentle, without need for a lot of color to convey the story. I love the ducks and the names of the babies. I loved how the policemen stopped the traffic for the ducks. This is a favorite and will continue to be a favorite in years to come. I highly suspect someday I'll find some other children to read it to (perhaps grandchildren?) and I'll ...more
Manik Sukoco
Jan 01, 2016 Manik Sukoco rated it really liked it
The book describes how a mother and father duck look for a safe spot to hatch their ducklings. They fly all around the woods, the pond, Beacon Hill, the State House, Louisburg Square, and finally, finding a nice cozy spot to hatch the eggs, the Public Garden. They make friends with the police man, Michael.
I think the book would be my choice to share with other children because it teaches the concept of making the right choice, such as you wouldn't want to live in a place that's dirty and smoky f
Jul 12, 2015 Matthew rated it it was amazing
This was such a cute book!

I remember discovering about this book about 2 years ago on my trip in Boston. I went to the same public garden looking for the exact location of Robin Williams and Matt Damon scene in Good Will Hunting when they are sitting on a bench. I looked everywhere and because of my lack of research and my iPhone battery life I could not pinpoint it.

So instead I took a tour of Boston and learned about the book and I shelved this book in the farthest regions of my mind until now
Apr 14, 2009 Arthur rated it liked it
When I bought an animal alphabet book by Richard Scarry this week, Bep told me that as late as the 1980s it was forbidden for animals in Dutch children's picture books to wear clothes. I had no idea. I was reading Donald Duck at the time and thought he was subversive for not wearing pants, but apparently he was subversive for wearing a shirt! I still don't understand this no clothes rule. What's so wrong about anthropomorphing (?) animals? One of the finest moments of Dutch literature is a medie ...more
This book has always been one of my favorite Caldecott Medal winners for several reasons. It's just as appealing now as when I first read it as a child. The author/illustrator captures the personalities and behaviors of Mr. and Mrs. Mallard perfectly. That mother duck and those ducklings just keep waddling along the busy Boston streets, heedless of the danger that surrounds them, and trusting that someone will intervene to make sure they make their way through the traffic safely. Even after all ...more
Jul 14, 2011 Derek rated it liked it
It's odd what strikes you many years later:

"Honey, I'm off to explore 'up the river', and will be gone for about a week. Take care of our eight extremely young children. I'll meet you in that place that's on the other side of the dangerous traffic, even though there's absolutely no reason to. Have fun, and don't poison the kids' minds against me while I'm gone!"

Fortunately Mrs. Mallard has the support of apparently the entire Boston police force; getting a restraining order against her deadbeat
Matthew West
Dec 07, 2014 Matthew West rated it really liked it
Shelves: t-l-307
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Joy H.
Jul 29, 2015 Joy H. marked it as keep-in-mind
Added 7/29/15. First published in 1941.

This prize-winning book by Robert McCloskey won the Caldecott Medal in 1942. The popularity of McCloskey's book led to the building of a bronze statue in Boston's Public Garden.

McCloskey became inspired to write this book while he was feeding the ducks in the Public Garden. To better illustrate the story, the author brought six ducklings to live
Marybeth Batie
Dec 08, 2014 Marybeth Batie rated it really liked it
Shelves: t-l-307
This children's picture book is about a pair of ducks who have eight ducklings, and the dad goes to find a place for them to live. The mom then leads her ducklings through the city to find the dad, in which she causes a commotion for al traffic to be stopped so they can cross the highway. This lower level reading book is comical and a classic, with themes of family and nurturing. I think that this could be used in the classroom by having children practice walking in a line like the ducklings do, ...more
John Yelverton
Sep 17, 2011 John Yelverton rated it liked it
It's a nice read, but hardly one of my childhood favorites.
Guadalupe Sanchez
Make a way for ducklings by McCloskey Robert
Genre: picture book, fiction Reading level:4-8 years old Format: good

While reading the book Make Way For Ducklings by Robert McCloskey I came to notice the title actually goes to what the story of the book was about. This book is about a couple of ducks that are trying to find a place to raise a family but struggle to find the perfect place. Until finally the ducks fly to a place they believe is the right place for them to live at. The mother duck Mrs
Kiera Burnett
Summary and Critique:
This timeless classic features crisp, simple, and yet beautiful illustrations, lending to the tale of a family of ducks, searching for a spot to hatch their ducklings. This book challenges young readers cognitively through the use of more complex words. An example of this is McCloskey’s description of the “strange enormous bird” on the swan boat. Instead of using words such as big or weird, McCloskey uses more challenging and descriptive words. Another example is the use of
“Make Way for Ducklings” is a Caldecott Medal award-winning book by Robert McCloskey and it is about how a family of ducks tries to live in the city of Boston. “Make Way for Ducklings” is a brilliant classic book that children will read over and over again.

Robert McCloskey has done a superb job at both illustrating and writing this book. Robert McCloskey makes this book extremely cute as it is simply about a family of ducks trying to adjust to life in the city. Both children and parents can easi
Oct 07, 2011 Melissa rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens
Make Way for Ducklings
By: Robert McCloskey

Genre: Traditional Literature

Mr. and Mrs. Mallard are searching for the appropriate home to lay their eggs, hatch and raise their ducklings. After finding a quaint little place, the Mallards await the arrival of their 8 little ducklings: Jack, Kack, Lack, Mack, Nack, Ouack, Pack and Quack. Mrs. Mallard accepts the responsibility of raising the ducklings while Mr. Mallard takes off to find a more permanent home. Read the rest of the story to see the adve
Sep 07, 2011 Nicole rated it really liked it
Make Way for Ducklings, a well-loved, classic children’s picture book, is like taking a walk back in time. Robert McCloskey’s heartwarming portrayal of two ducks searching for the perfect place to raise their family of ducklings is charming and memorable. The illustrations capture a simpler time where policeman would take a moment to help a mother mallard and her ducklings cross the road. The Caldecott award winner was fist published in 1941. The soft cream colored pages with the brown text and ...more
Brittany Young
Sep 04, 2011 Brittany Young rated it it was ok
When I first saw this book in the library I became immediately emotionally attached to it. My Great-Grandmother had this book at her house, and when I was very young I used to look at the pictures, but I never read the words. This book is strikingly simple in appearance, which makes it seem antique and elegant. The dark green cover contrasts well with the image of the brown and cream colored ducks. Inside, the same principle was applied to the illustrations. The pictures inside are all drawn wit ...more
Jul 08, 2011 Kate rated it really liked it
This is a classic children's book about two ducks looking for a place to raise their family. I know it's silly, and probably not what the children reading this book are thinking about, but my favorite part is in the beginning when the mother and father duck are trying to find a suitable place to have their baby ducks. The mother is so picky, but it shows how much she cares about these little duckies. Of course, the part that most appeals to little children is probably the part towards the end, w ...more
Sep 05, 2014 Holly rated it it was amazing
Definitely one of my favorite books from my childhood -- one of the first books that my father chose for me from the library and read to me at home. Never owned my own copy, but it was generally available at the library if I wanted to visit it again.
Sara K.
Read this in college and loved it. Then a friend gave me a copy in Spanish (Abran paso a los Patitos). It was fun to reread it with my goddaughter curled up in my lap telling me all about the story. There really aren't a lot of finer things in life!
Rebecca McNutt
Apr 25, 2015 Rebecca McNutt rated it really liked it
I loved this book when I was a kid, and its surprisingly profound messages of caring for the welfare of animals were accompanied by beautiful illustrations and lyrical writing.
Nov 02, 2013 Rob rated it it was amazing
In this children's classic, Robert McCloskey presents a case study in why some parents shouldn't be allowed to name their own children. Master and Lady Mallard, in a desperate attempt to look creative, saddle their offspring with some of the most hideous appellations imaginable. You may think it's annoying when parents give all their children the same initial—and you'd be right, of course—but that has nothing on the Mallards' broadside assault on good taste. I sure hope that poor Kack and Ouack, ...more
Kelly Eggen
Feb 04, 2016 Kelly Eggen rated it liked it
This lighthearted tale focuses on a family of duck, Mr. and Mrs. Mallard, who are searching for the perfect place to nest their ducklings. They look all over the city until finally, they find the perfect spot by the river. However, suspense builds when the family decides to escape their nest and explore the chaotic city. Readers are left bitting their nails as these ducks waddle their way through the big city.

Although this book was well written, it was a bit long and redundant for a picture boo
Maelin Long
Feb 04, 2016 Maelin Long rated it it was amazing
Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey is the perfect little family book. It follows a duck couple from their search for a home through their adventures in the city of Boston. Here they have eight ducklings who they teach about the world and how to live in it. Through this well-written story and easy to follow pictures, children can see the adventures of a family and connect to it from their own family experiences.

To make this high quality, McCloskey uses many different literary and design e
Toni Lineberry
Jan 14, 2016 Toni Lineberry rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children, homeschool
Needless to say, ducks are a fun part of our life. This story captured the imagination of my son immediately. I have read it over and over. We have it as part of two different collections, the best version being from Robert McCloskey's own: "Make Way For McCloskey" because the illustrations are in their original sepia and all of them are included which is not always the case in a storybook collection. The names of the ducks! Just saying their names is so much fun. The attentive training Mrs. Mal ...more
Dec 03, 2015 Nora rated it really liked it
Shelves: caldecotts
Make Way for Ducklings has been a picture book classic for decades. I enjoyed reading this book in grade school, and read it again this year, and it is just as sweet. This story tells of a mallard couple looking for a place to nest a hatch their ducklings. When the ducklings hatch, they travel with their mother through downtown Boston to meet Mr. Mallard at the Public Gardens. Illustrated in hand drawn pencil, using only the color brown, this book makes the most of it’s pictures. The pictures ar ...more
Sep 09, 2015 Haley rated it it was amazing
"Make Way for Ducklings" was a great book. The book is about 2 ducks, a mother and father who are looking for a new place to call home where they will be able to lay their eggs and raise there little ducklings. The first spot they flew to was the Boston Public Gardens. As soon as the two landed Mrs. Mallard knew right away it was not a safe place. The next spot the two flew to was a island in the Charles River. Mr. and Mrs. Mallard knew that was the perfect place so they made a nest and laid the ...more
Haley ten Hope
Sep 09, 2015 Haley ten Hope rated it really liked it
Make Way for Ducklings is a cute story about a Mother and Father duck looking for a perfect place to lay their eggs. They go through a series of events that make them question each place they think they want to settle down. After searching for awhile, they finally find a small island that is perfect to build their home for their soon to be ducklings. The author uses no color through out the book which I thought was very interesting. The illustrator does use very thin lines maybe to represent the ...more
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John Robert McCloskey (September 15, 1914 – June 30, 2003) was an American writer and illustrator of children's books. He both wrote and illustrated eight picture books and won two Caldecott Medals from the American Library Association recognizing the year's best-illustrated picture book. Four of those eight books were set in Maine: Blueberries for Sal, One Morning in Maine, Time of Wonder, and Bu ...more
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