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This is the House that Jack Built
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This is the House that Jack Built

3.91  ·  Rating Details  ·  784 Ratings  ·  99 Reviews
What happened in the house that Jack built? It all started with the cheese that lay in the house that Jack built. And then came the rat that ate the cheese and the cat who killed the rat. Caldecott Medal?winning author and illustrator Simms Taback brings his distinctive humor and creativity to the beloved story of Jack and the house that he built.
Paperback, 32 pages
Published November 18th 2004 by Puffin Books (first published January 1st 2002)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,197)
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Apr 24, 2016 Mariah rated it liked it
"This is The House that Jack Built, a favorite rhyme for children for several centuries, was first published in 1755 and probably derived from an ancient Hebrew chant in the 16th century."

This book has great illustrations! They are hilarious! The book is also very easy to follow a long and is very repetitive, so a great book for students to work on their reading and their sight words.
Katie Carson
Oct 03, 2009 Katie Carson rated it really liked it
Shelves: traditional-lit
Traditional stories are supposed to engage readers. The predictable, repetitive chant in this story found me almost singing along out-loud with each page. As you continue through the story, you'll see that the text gets smaller the more frequently you read the passage. The author assumes that by the end of the book, you can predict that "that lay in the house that Jack built" will end the page. This chanting a truly remarkable element of a well-written children's book. My favorite part about the ...more
Taylor Melum
Dec 13, 2014 Taylor Melum rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tch-307
Citations: Taback, S. (2002). This is the house that Jack built. New York, N.Y.: G.P. Putnam’s Sons.
Genre: Nursery rhyme/ Children's literature
Format: Picture book
Reading level: 2
Theme/topic: Repetitive rhyming words
Gender: Male

In the book, This is the house that Jack built, Simms Taback put a creative spin on a classic story of Jack’s house. The mouse ate the cheese, the cat ate the mouse, the dog scared the cat and so on and so forth. The simple words, sing-song pattern, and wonde
Elizabeth Woodruff
Jan 31, 2016 Elizabeth Woodruff rated it really liked it
This book was written by Simms Taback, a Caldecott Award winner. Every child likes to imagine a house that they would have someday and so this would be a fun book to use to spark their imagination. Jack has many things inside of his crazy, four story house. There is cheese, a rat, a cat, a dog, a cow, a maiden who was forlorn, a tattered man, a judge all shaven, a rooster, and a farmer. This book has very fun with bright illustrations.

I really enjoyed reading this book! The repetition throughou
Heather Barrett
Apr 05, 2014 Heather Barrett rated it it was amazing
I liked this book. Simms Taback takes an old rhyme and adds unique pictures to go along. There are pictures of houses with what look like newspaper advertisements describing the houses. This story uses a repetitive nature similar to There was an Old Woman Who Swallowed a Fly. This allows children to be able to quickly learn the words to the story to help "read" the story. There is also an author's note bout the original illustrator of the rhyme, Randolph Caldecott. This story has been around for ...more
Chelsea Rusch
May 27, 2016 Chelsea Rusch rated it really liked it
Shelves: edrd-614
This is the House that Jack Built by Simms Taback is a wonderful picturebook of a classic nursery rhyme. The peritextual features are as clever and funny as the illustrations inside the book. The endpages are ads for all sorts of different houses. The back cover is a sale ad for tools that Jack recommends. The illustrations are witty and hilarious with bold colors and new hidden quirks to be discovered upon every opening of the book.
I enjoyed this book because of the fun illustrations that entic
This Is The House That Jack Built
Picture book by the same artist
Grades K-2

Simms Taback’s illustrations are bold, bright and vividly exaggerated. The text dances on the pages, around a collage of illustrations mimicking the fast-paced and colorful imagination of a child. The letters are unsteady, varying in size, thickness and color, paralleling the writing of children. Part of the story’s charm and high child appeal stems from the colorful illustrations and the nonsensical characters. First read
Jul 04, 2012 Allison rated it it was amazing
This took me longer to read then most. The illustrations are very busy! There is so much going on. As each character makes an appearance, the artist chose to put all kinds of extra things on the page to tickle our fancy. At the very beginning, before the story even began, there was a list of all of the characters to expect throughout the story. This gives the children a little heads up about who all will be involved but gives none of the story away. It starts with the cheese, then the rat and th ...more
Sep 12, 2011 Heather rated it it was ok
The pictures in this book are intriguing, with a combination of paint and cut-out oddities. A traditional rhyme with some commentary included with the pictures.

A lot of the commentary was too preachy for a children's book, imo, mostly in the contradictory messages about food. One example is the author's opinions on different kinds of cheese: the only good kind according to him is American cheese, which is pretty much the only kind in the picture that's barely cheese at all. Parts of a cow are h
Veronica Diaz
Nov 11, 2012 Veronica Diaz rated it really liked it
Main Characters: N/A
Setting: The house that Jack Built
POV: Narrator
Grade Level: K-2
Reading Level: Fountas-Pinnell - F
Genre: Traditional Literature

This is a children’s story that has been around for a long time, and it continues to bring smiles to the children who read it today. It is a story that takes in a house that Jack built (as the title would imply). With each turn of the page, an additional character is introduced, and it explains how the character relates to the previous characters. The
Simms Taback won a Caldecott Honor award for his version of "There Was an Old Woman Who Swallowed a Fly." "The House that Jack Built" is also a traditional tale, first published in 1755 from a much older oral rhyme dating at least back to the sixteenth century. In 1878, Randolph Caldecott, known for the medals named after him, wrote and illustrated his own version. Simms Taback's rendition ends with a tribute to "the artist who first had drawn...a picture of the farmer planting his corn" (Hint: ...more
May 22, 2016 Haizelbear rated it really liked it
Shelves: ed-230h
This book tells the story of the house that Jack built. The story goes on to follow a story telling pattern like the one used in the nursery rhyme "There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly". The illustrations look like they were done in colored pencils. I could use this book to teach about cause and effect. I could also use this book in a set of other books that use the same kind of story telling pattern to teach that type of writing style.
Jul 09, 2011 Jennie added it
Age: 4-8

Genre: Picture book

Diversity: Imagery

Illustrations: The drawing in this book make use of the contrast between the dark backgrounds and the brightly colored objects in the house. Little inside jokes are strewn throughout the pages. The text is also part of the illustration, done in bright and varying colors.

Personal Response: I thoroughly enjoyed this updated version of the classic story. The additions to every verse in the illustrations are very funny. I think this story is an example o
Anayssa Pulido
Apr 13, 2013 Anayssa Pulido rated it it was amazing
This book was awarded the caldecott medal. The story takes place inside the house that Jack built. In each page there is something new introduced to the story; it all starts with a cheese that lay in the house that Jack built, then the rat who ate the cheese, then the cat who ate the rat who ate the cheese inside the house that Jack built. I thought this story was very entertaining and children of all ages would love it. The illustrations are great and very original. It is great to teach student ...more
Hannah O'Hearn
Feb 22, 2016 Hannah O'Hearn rated it it was ok
Shelves: children-s-lit
This a rhyme about the series of events that go on in the house house that jack built. Everything cause another thing to happen. This book is very similar to "There was an old lady who swallowed a fly."
This book was okay. The illustrations were fun and I think it would be a fun read aloud for kids. You might also be able to use this book for a sequencing activity.
Kandice Buck
Nov 02, 2015 Kandice Buck rated it really liked it
Shelves: fairy-tales
This book is a rhyme for children that is about a house that Jack built. It tells about who and what lives in the house. It starts with a piece of cheese and each page the author adds something else that is in the house. It is a fun little chant for children to learn or listen to. This is a great book to read to all elementary students.
The House that Jack Built has been re-told and illustrated by Simms Taback. I actually viewed the read-along DVD of this title, which was narrated by Many Patinkin. I particularly enjoyed the illustrations, which were drawn in a way that reminded me of a collage or felt board. This effect was enhanced in the DVD version, as the different characters and objects were animated to go along with the action in the story. Although I observed for myself that this was a good read-aloud book, I would have ...more
Jane Njoroge
Mar 11, 2016 Jane Njoroge rated it it was amazing
This is the House that Jack Built
by Simms Taback
The story is age appropriate and entertaining.
What happened in the house that Jack built? It all started with the cheese that lay in the house that Jack built. And then came the rat that ate the cheese and the cat who killed the rat.
Tracey Melcher
Taback puts a new twist on the memorable old rhyme in This is the House That Jack Built. The familiarity and predictability of this cumulative tale make it especially appealing for young readers. Taback starts with a single picture of Jack’s house, adding the usual cast of characters (cheese, rat, cat, dog, cow, cow, maiden, man, judge, rooster, and farmer) as the tale goes on. In a surprise ending, Taback pays homage to Randolph Caldecott, “the artist who first had drawn” this wonderful rhyme i ...more
Evan Williamson
Jun 20, 2015 Evan Williamson rated it liked it
This is the House That Jack Built that was in the community that was where the Wal-Mart that sells the pesticide that kills the bugs feeding on the crops of the poor farmer appealing to the government bureaucrat that wrote rejection letter for the form for funding for the library where librarian who dates the dog catcher that used the tranquilizer that put down the monkey owned by the pimp that will kill the two-bit crackhead having blackmail sex with mayor of Bannville who directed the police d ...more
Breana Fitzgerald
This book is a great predictable fun quick read for younger grades. It would be fun for the class to say the repetitive parts along with me. This would also be good for older grades for learning cause and effect.
Emily Farmer
Oct 29, 2012 Emily Farmer rated it liked it
Recommends it for: first - third grade
This book is about what happens in the house that Jack built starting with an old piece of cheese, to cats being worried by dogs, roosters that crow in the morning, etc. This is a cute predictable book because the same things happen on the pages. I didn't like that the pictures and text are so scattered so it would be hard for children to read it in order. I am also a bit nervous about the style of text that is used. THere is tons of different styles on the same page that I think would also conf ...more
Elly White
Dec 31, 2014 Elly White rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014, childrens
Great pictures and crazy letters to go with the story! excellent all round. You know the song, you know the story, and the pictures just add to it.
Bvlmc Buchanan Verplanck Elementary School
Using his trademark colorful, graphic style and cutouts, Simms Taback provides a humorous and delightful retelling of this classic children’s rhyme.
Oct 15, 2009 Ashley rated it it was amazing
Imaginative! This would be the word I would use if I had to describe this book in one word.
The flyleaf, end pages, and covers are filled with creative pictures that hold more meaning each time a person looks at them. Similar to how each page is filled with added depth and hidden jokes. For example, on the back cover there are many tools given spoofed names like the “pretty big hand saw” or the “plane, not airplane”.
The bold, bright colors relate to the fun atmosphere the book portrays in its il
Mar 13, 2010 Samantha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
This picture book presents a new version of the rhyme from 1775. This book would be good for children 4-8. I enjoyed the silly way the book built up its almost nonsense story. I liked the child like collage and crayon-like drawings that were used to illustrate the story.

I can imagine this story being used in read aloud during a kindergarten class. I can picture the kids hearing the story enough times to know what comes next. They could each take turns being a certain section of the story. That
Jul 06, 2012 Cariegreer rated it liked it
This Is The House That Jack Built by Simms Taback is a very busy book! This book was published for the first time in 1755 and illustrated by Randolph Caldecott in 1878. It starts with two-full pages of homes that are for sale like in a newspaper ad. The cast of characters is pictured in the house on the next page. All of the colorful text is in uppercase letters. I like the catchy verses; however, as the story proceeds the text is all over the page. The illustrations are eye-catching and silly, ...more
Mar 17, 2010 Josiah rated it did not like it
This version of The House That Jack Built is a good homage to the long history of this poem, which dates back to the mid-1700s, with many stops along the way that include a version illustrated by the legendary Randolph Caldecott in 1878. Now Simms Taback, himself winner of the Caldecott Medal, has told this story in his own creative style.

The mixed media artwork of The House That Jack Built compliments well the zany nature of the story, and the little add-ons by Simms Taback should bring a sm
Shayne Cope
Apr 25, 2014 Shayne Cope rated it liked it
Shelves: ch-05-poetry
Wonderful illustrations, classic.
This is the House That Jack Built is a short tale centered around a piece of cheese which has been devoured by a rat. What makes this version unique is the illustrations. The pictures are bright and colorful. I would describe them as contemporary. At times, the illustrations make the content difficult to read, but the book is so repetitive that it doesn't seem to matter too much.

Title: This is the House That Jack Built
Author: Simms Taback

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Simms Taback (born 1932) is an author and illustrator. He was born in the Bronx to a Jewish family. He is famous for illustrations for many children's books including, the Caldecott Medal winning, There was an Old Lady who Swallowed the Fly and Joseph Had a Little Overcoat, which have earned him many awards and praise in many circles. He was also a designer for CBS Records and The New York Times, ...more
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