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The Flea's Sneeze

4.03  ·  Rating Details ·  393 Ratings  ·  63 Reviews
On a dark, dark night
On an old, old farm
In a rickety, crickety
Tumbledown barn,
Everyone slept peacefully-
But not the flea . . .

A delightfully silly barnyard tale-now in paperback

What happens when a flea gets a bad case of the sniffles? Utter pandemonium in the barnyard! This rollicking picture book follows a lovable flea and his exceptional sneeze through the mayhem. Before
Paperback, 32 pages
Published May 1st 2005 by Square Fish (first published September 15th 2000)
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May 04, 2009 Jillian rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Great for library story times! Very funny, lots of repetition and opportunities for audience participation.
Not bad. Could work in preschool storytime; fits the "sneeze" theme I'm going for. But not sure how well the kids will connect with it. Same, repetitive phrase, but there's too much text for them to join in. Maybe if I point out the animals moving around in their sleep. Will put on display and have ready for filler if needed.

4/3/13 & 4/4/13 Filler was needed on both days. I think this worked better on the second day with the extremely tiny group. The first day I told them to watch for the an
Apr 25, 2010 Connie rated it liked it
This book is very similar in theme to The Napping House. As such, I can't help but compare the two. And when I do, this one is definitely the loser.

It's not really such a bad book, I guess. The repetitive rhymes are a little long. There are a few non sequiturs - the sneeze wakes them up, and then the bat is baffled so his eyes turn blue? It reminds the frog of his old nephew? (Worse, this is clearly just to fit the -oo rhyme scheme, meaning you have to say "old nephEW" with the stress on the las
Mar 03, 2014 Esther rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids-books
Its a great story for kids. My 3 year old loves it. Not too short or too long - perfect length to keep him engaged. I love this story.
Lana Harriman
May 09, 2015 Lana Harriman rated it it was amazing
Shelves: beginning-books
Personal Reflection - Too cute! I love the poetic flow of this story and how the whole idea of a simple sneeze by a flea causes a ridiculous chain reaction throughout the barn that includes many of the animals. The artwork is absolutely adorable - and not just because the illustrator, Karla Firehammer (now Karla Taylor) is personal friend of mine. Every child I've ever read this book to loves it and asks to hear it read over and over. This one will be on my bookshelf in the classroom for sure!
Oct 30, 2012 Melissa rated it really liked it
Genre: Fantasy

Review: Publishers Weekly
The rollicking rhythms and kid-pleasing repetition of Downey's (Sing, Henrietta! Sing!) rhyming verse recommend this perky volume for a lighthearted read-aloud. In a tumbledown barn, all the animals sleep peacefully, except a tiny flea, who coughs, sniffles and utters a plaintive plea to his snoring pals, "Does eddybody hab a tissue for be?" Finally, he issues an enormous sneeze that manages to rouse the menagerie: "It scared the rat,/ Who cried `Boohoo!'/
Sep 01, 2014 Corin rated it it was amazing
Shelves: edsl-520
Genre: Participation Book
This beautifully illustrated book takes the reader along for a night in the barn with their favorite sleeping barnyard friends. The repetition and rhyme make the silly story fun for children to chime in with the reader. What will happen when the flea finally sneezes?
Themes: Barnyard fun, rhyme, repetition, predicting
Ways to use the book: During first read, make predictions based on title, cover and first few pages of the book. Using enlarged text (big book or SmartBoard)
Nov 20, 2012 Jessica rated it it was amazing
The eye snatching color choices, and attention grabbing lines make this book a wonderful addition to anyone's library. The repetitive order of animals, and their rhyming counter parts give this book a real kick. The illustrations are rendered so that they can be easily figured out and interpreted by children of all ages. The words are clear and easy to see and many of them are emphasized by size and orientation. Also the social-emotional aspect of the book adds a nice touch.

Learning Extension:
Dec 29, 2010 Jamie rated it really liked it
All of the farm animals in the barn are sleeping, except for the flea. The flea needs to sneeze. He finally sneezes, waking all of the animals. After the flea gets a tissue, he finally manages to fall asleep. Now all of the animals can sleep again, except for the pig. The pig has to sneeze!
The illustrations were done in acrylic paint. The illustrations are very crisp and clear. The animals are very detailed, with very expressive facial features. Even the tiny flea is done in detail.
The Flea’s
Katlin Sims
Jul 04, 2013 Katlin Sims rated it it was amazing
All the animals on the farm slept peacefully in the barn. The rat, the cat, the black-eyed bat, the cow, the owl, the feathered fowl, the dog, the hog, and the old barn frog all slept. But not the flea. He couldn't sleep because he had the sniffles. No one heard him cough, or sniffle, or ask for a tissue. But then the flea sneezed so loud that it woke all the animals up! The mouse gave the flea a tissue and they all went back to sleep, all except the hog. Now he had the sniffles.

This book would
Oct 03, 2012 Sara rated it really liked it
This children’s book is written in rhyme and it is so fun to read. The author uses words creatively in order to make them rhyme. The story is about a group of animals that are sound asleep in a barn, until the flea sneezes and wakes all of the other animals up. Once the animals wake up, there is a bit of commotion until they realize what that sound was. In addition, the illustrations go along with the text beautifully; the pictures are colorful and entertaining to look at. It is especially enter ...more
Amber Fisher
This modern fantasy portrays animals, and a flea, as humans being sick. All the barnyard animals are sleeping, except a flea. The flea needs a tissue but sneezes really loud that startles and wake up all the barnyard animals. The animals help their friend out with a tissue and the flea drifts off to sleep. However, at the end of the book it shows that now the hog might sneeze and wake up all the animals. Karla Firehammer, the illustrator, has beautifully detailed illustrations throughout the sto ...more
Kate Hastings
Feb 07, 2008 Kate Hastings rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: preschool storytime illness
Shelves: winterstorytimes
Similar to Farm Flu, but I like the pictures in this one. Rhyming text walks you through a quiet barnyard where everything is sleeping except for the flea... nobody hears him until he sneezes. One by one, the startled animals wake up. Fun for storytime, but the pictures have a lot of details for children to look at.

Pair with songs from Jim Gill... "Sneezing song."
He rhymes sneeze with food items.

Also, can stretch the whole theme by adding Laurie Berkner's "Jump in the Soup." song. You know, chic
Becky B
Aug 23, 2013 Becky B rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Emergent readers, Language arts teachers
Everyone's sleeping in the barn, when the flea coughs. Everyone's still sleeping when he gets a tickle. But when the flea sneezes everyone wakes up!

This is a great choice for emergent readers as the rhyming and repetitive text should make it easy for kids to be able to "read" along as the story goes on. Kids should enjoy the drawings and crazy antics of the animals after the flea sneezes.

A good choice for teachers who are talking about rhyming words or story line plotting. (Very easy to recogniz
May 27, 2015 Brittiny rated it really liked it
This book fits into my own category. This book is about a flea that is in a barn full of animals. All the animals are sleeping except for the flea because he has to sneeze. And we go through the whole build up to his sneeze, and then the sneeze and how the animals react. And in the end--the pig has to sneeze. I thought it was cute. If I was to use this book in a class, I would look at the design of the cut of the book. What is this shape doing for the story? I think it enhances the illustrations ...more
Elizabeth Vance
Jun 19, 2013 Elizabeth Vance rated it liked it
Shelves: rhyming
Cute book. I love the rhyming and the illustrations. Children love animals (adults too ;) so this book is very catchy. The pictures are all similar in color except for little pops of color so the pictures are eye catching. The word play makes this book fun to read over and over again.

L.E. Why did the pig sneeze when the flea was sick? Germs are spreadable through contact so what are some ways we can reduce spreading our germs? Use as a way to review proper hand-washing and introduce the ABC hand
This is one of the many, many books I consider to be fluff. It's amusing to read once, but doesn't teach, doesn't inform, doesn't do anything other than entertain.

I'm not against entertainment in the least. But there are so many wonderful children's books that both teach and entertain that I try to read those first.

The illustrations were comical and well done. The story was cute. We all laughed. But again, just fluff.

We won't be repeating this one.
Mandy J. Hoffman
Dec 12, 2009 Mandy J. Hoffman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids-books, i-own
All kids like a good bedtime story and what better way to tuck your kids into bed than with one that brings smiles to faces and laughter to the room. This book of rhythms and repetition is both a kid and parent pleaser.

All the barn animals are sleeping soundly except for one. After a good sneeze everything seems better. Well, at least for that animal!

It's silly storyline and verses make it a fun read for parents and a memorable tale for little ones.
Faith Barron
Feb 17, 2013 Faith Barron rated it really liked it
The Flea's Sneeze written by Lynn Downey is a wonderful book for all ages. The captivating illustrations make it easy for students to interpret what is going on in the story. This book is about a flea who cannot sleep because he needs to sneeze. The story has a wonderful flow to it so the students will want to hear the entire story.
Samantha Penrose
This book has got it all!
Rhythm, rhyme, and repitition.
The animals move around from page to page, so it's challenging and fun to find them and touch each one as you read about them.
Extra bonus, you get to use a stuffy nose voice on a couple of lines!
"Does eddybody hab a tissue for be?"
"I think I'b godda sdeeze."
This book is about a flea that gets a bad case of the sniffles and wakes every animal up in the barn while they are sleeping. This is a cute book for children to read for pleasure. If being read aloud for fun, then it could be used to touch on rhyming and repetition.
Nov 06, 2008 Dolly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Shelves: childrens, 2008
A very cute story about a poor little flea with a cold. Funny enough - I ended up sounding just like the little flea the day after I read this, so be warned that his cold may be catching (ha ha). Our girls thought this was a fun story and they really enjoyed the illustrations.
Jul 25, 2008 Peggy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This has been a favorite of both of my boys (when they were between the ages of 2 and 4). And it's a fun one for me to read aloud. The artwork is charming, the story is simple enough to follow, and it's fun! A great book.
Jan 30, 2013 Bethany rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-rhyming
Cute book for younger children. This book is clever in telling the story and can be used to share about how to tell a story. It also could be used for a student to draw a picture of a sceen that they liked from the book.
Oct 29, 2009 Sarah rated it really liked it
Reminded me of the Napping House. Everyone is sleeping except the flea, who has a cold and needs a tissue. The flea's sneezing wakes all the animals up, one by one, until mouse gives flea a tissue. And then the pig gets the cold.
Jul 19, 2011 Jen rated it really liked it
What a great barnyard animal tale! All of the animals are fast asleep except the little flea who has to sneeze. When he finally does, he wakes everyone up and then the fun begins!
Jan 29, 2009 Kathy rated it it was amazing
Very cute book about animals sleeping in a barn, well most of them are sleeping.
Mar 25, 2014 Laura rated it really liked it
Shelves: from-preschool
Another great book I loved in preschool!
Kaila Anderson
Jan 23, 2017 Kaila Anderson rated it really liked it
Shelves: el-ed-340
Picture book. Great alliteration, religion, and rhyme. Definitely good for a read aloud/choral reading. Poor flea in a barn has a cold!
May 24, 2014 Deb rated it liked it
Kiddo likes it more than me. Reminiscent of Boynton's But Not the Hippopotamus and Brown's Big Red Barn.
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