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Big Red Barn

4.18  ·  Rating Details ·  9,787 Ratings  ·  243 Reviews
Margaret Wise Brown's classic barnyard story is now available in this sturdy board book edition. A lulling text and exquisite illustrations follow the animals' day on the farm as they make their noises, play in the grass, and return to the big red barn to fall sound asleep.
Board book, 32 pages
Published January 6th 1995 by HarperFestival (first published 1956)
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(showing 1-30)
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Jul 25, 2013 Karen rated it it was amazing
Another book has migrated downstairs for my review. Before I wrote this review, I had to do a little research on the author. I vaguely remembered that she had no children and died young -- I was right: she never married, had no children and died of a post-surgery blood clot in 1952 at the age of 42. Yet her work lives on in a big way. Why?

Big Red Barn, like Goodnight Moon, reads like a lullaby. It is about impossible to not lull your voice when reading it. Its phrases end with a gentle rhyme, no
Shanna Gonzalez
Jan 15, 2010 Shanna Gonzalez rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-00-04
Big Red Barn is one of those baby books that provokes either charm or annoyance in adult readers, and delight in young listeners. It is marked by Brown's soothingly rhythmic, repetitive text, sprinkled with farmyard animal noises that toddlers will love to imitate. The story opens with "a pink pig/ who was learning to squeal" greeting the sunrise. Other farm animals go about their activities throughout the day, and (just as in Goodnight Moon) the pictures become progressively darker as night fal ...more
Jul 23, 2013 midnightfaerie rated it it was ok
Shelves: childrens
We got a themed box of books from the library about Farms and this was one of the books. Nothing out of the ordinary, except maybe the pretty illustrations. I loved the picture of the tiny pink pig. My preschoolers liked it and enjoyed the pictures, pointing out various things as I read, and so it was still worth reading. No real learning value except that it's a book. It might be considered a level 1 reading book, but it's debatable on whether or not it has enough words to warrant that.
Abby Welker
Jul 10, 2009 Abby Welker added it
Shelves: kids-faves
totally, totally, a fave
Aug 15, 2012 Pamela rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-reads
"Big Red Barn" by Margaret Wise Brown was a really good book, and my daughter enjoyed it immensely. As a parent, I take great joy when I see my daughter really enjoying what I read and recognizing the pictures that she sees on the page. She was able to identify all the animals, and even wanted to know "Where they mama at?"
The author did a really good job of displaying a lot of colors in this book too. I think that really helps children as they are learning to read because all the bright colors c
Jason Wiseman
Apr 24, 2013 Jason Wiseman rated it really liked it
If you can get past the racy scene with the Scarecrow and his "ho," this is a pretty solid story of some animals doing their thing on a farm. While there is no central hero for whom to root, the overall character development is pretty solid. I truly enjoyed counting all of the eggs. SPOILER ALERT: There are 10 in total.
Dec 15, 2016 Amanda rated it it was ok
Shelves: childrens-books
Not bad for an older book (copyright 1956). Lots of rhyming, good read-aloud. I like how the images show the how the day is going by, from morning to night -- the sky goes from sunny to dusk.
Dec 25, 2016 Dana rated it it was amazing
This book, written in prose, teaches life on the farm for animals. A treasure for all young readers.
Nov 16, 2016 Brooke rated it it was amazing
I can't wait to use this in my classroom. I love animals.
Dec 11, 2016 Cierra rated it really liked it
A cute children's book about the lives and day to day happenings of animals on a farm.
Jaime Contreras
Oct 18, 2016 Jaime Contreras rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens, poetry
This is a lullaby book in that it 'sings' as one reads it. It flows and is relaxing as one reads about barn life, It touches on learning, nurturing and caring. this is a wonderful book to read to children. In time, they read it with great joy. Ms. Brown left a treasury of wonderful books for her 'children' of the many generations.
Anna Chaddick
Big Red Barn is your typical farm book. It talks all about the day to day things that the animals do on the farm from playing in the grass to sleeping. This book is from the 90's so it is a little older, but still an easy read full of rhyming words and all different kinds of animals that I am sure younger kids would love. This book could be used for the rhyming words or it could be used to illustrate the noises that animals make.
Lucy Ingram
Sep 27, 2016 Lucy Ingram rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
This book really helps children in becoming familiar with farm animals and the surroundings of a farm. The children can also become familiar with sounds and the story also envelopes a sense of community between the animals. Primary school children could learn to bring this into the classroom.
Sep 23, 2016 Lindsay rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children
The kiddo loves this book. We grew a little tired of it.
Miranda Jones
Nov 29, 2013 Miranda Jones rated it really liked it
I thought that this book was adorable for young readers. The playful language and rhyming makes it very appealing for the intended audience of young children. The rhyming teaches phonemic awareness, which helps prepare students to become better readers. The beautiful illustrations also provide useful depictions of what the text says, so it makes this book easier for beginner readers to follow along with the pictures. I personally loved the adorable pictures of the baby farm animals. I've always ...more
Romanus Elangwe
Mar 11, 2014 Romanus Elangwe rated it it was amazing
"Big Red Barn"

Author: Margaret wise Brown (1910-1952)


Margaret Wise Brown was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1910. Aprolific American writer of children's book. She graduated from Hollins University, Roanake, Virginia in 1932 with a B.A. degree in English. She worked as a teacher and studied art. Her first book "When the Wind Blew," was published in 1937.

Book Overview:

The book attempts to show the life of animals in the barn. It describes the barn as big and red. The location of
May 06, 2009 Jenny rated it it was amazing
My toddler's all-time favorite book. It's a sweet portrait of a pastoral farm that takes you to meet the animals and back to meet them again in different contexts, told in lovely irregular rhyming verse (à la Goodnight Moon). With a simple vocabulary and virtually no "story," it's easy for her to grasp what's going on in a way she can't with many of her books. There are plenty of pictures of familiar animals she can name and make the sounds of, and the quiet rhythm of it and the fact that it end ...more
Nov 29, 2012 Dolly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with younger children
Shelves: childrens, pets, rhyming, 2012
This is a short, entertaining book featuring farm animals. The narrative is simple and repetitive and the illustrations by Felicia Bond are colorful and cartoonish, so this book is perfect for younger children.

I never knew that she had collaborated with Margaret Wise Brown, and while this book could never take the place of Goodnight Moon or The Runaway Bunny in my heart, it was fun to read.
Meagan Harris
Apr 25, 2014 Meagan Harris rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids-books
I bought this book based on the good reviews, but the first time I read through it I thought to myself, "No way my kid is going to like this. Too long, too many words; he'll think it's boring." I was surprised when he seemed to enjoy it the first time we read it together. Then he sat still again and enjoyed it the second, at 18 months old, this is the only book that he will sit still for. I don't know if it's the animal sounds or pictures, or the gentle cadence of the verses, or the f ...more
Rita Date
Dec 03, 2013 Rita Date rated it really liked it
Big Red Barn is all about life on a farm. It introduces many different farm animals that might live in a barn. This book is great to read to young children because some of the students might relate to living on the farm. The teacher of the class could read this book then read a book that relates to the city. The students could compare the two environments as a class and make a chart on how they compare and differ from one another. I liked this book because I grew up with some of these animals so ...more
In the Big Red Barn farm animals have the run of the barn this day. The children are gone, so they are free to mingle on the farm until it is time to sleep. The exception is the lonely field mouse that was born in the corn field. The story reminds me of a community. All of the farm animals, with the exception of the mouse, are going about their business doing whatever it is they do, with one exception. The mouse is left all alone, and doesn’t have the connection with the others. One feels kind o ...more
Chris Aldrich
Sep 19, 2015 Chris Aldrich rated it liked it
Margaret Wise Brown has certainly done better. There wasn't much plot and I generally wasn't much of a fan of the illustrations by Felicia Bond until the end. On the penultimate page about mice playing in the hay, there was a surreptitious upside down picture of Snoopy hiding on a bucket. And in one of the best parts of the book - for reasons beyond my understanding - along with the line "While the moon sailed high" Bond had a wonderful reflection of the moon in the water bin in which a small sa ...more
Apr 18, 2008 Kristin rated it it was amazing
Yet another book my children would rate as amazing. This one has been a staple in our home forever. In fact, it became so worn from page turning, the binding gave in and we had to go purchase a new one. My eldest son delighted in finding the butterflies on each page and identifying all species of animals and yes, counting the miniscule bats flying out of the barn. Now, my youngest son is the one to be enthralled with this book - he loves looking for mice. A simple, sweet and gentle book to be lo ...more
Little Free Library #8424
Margaret Wise Brown has certainly done better. There wasn't much plot and I generally wasn't much of a fan of the illustrations by Felicia Bond until the end. On the penultimate page about mice playing in the hay, there was a surreptitious upside down picture of Snoopy hiding on a bucket. And in one of the best parts of the book - for reasons beyond my understanding - along with the line "While the moon sailed high" Bond had a wonderful reflection of the moon in the water bin in which a small sa ...more
Sep 11, 2016 Vivian rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Gearing up for our "Farm-tastic" story time we corralled two copies of the picture book format of this classic. (It's been a favorite since 1956!) We have the luxury of performing teams for our library presentations. One performer read one page spread and the other performer read the next, trading off to the end of the book and then reciting the last page in unison. This adds variety and keeps the energy going. It also helps the children enjoy the pictures as they can choose the book nearest the ...more
Drew Graham
Jun 16, 2015 Drew Graham rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids
The big red barn is the home of many animals, and with the humans away, we meet the animals as they go throughout their day and prepare for the night.

This is a really nice book with delightful illustrations featuring many farm animals. It has a lot of color and description and a nice rhythm to the text, and it was fun to read with The Boy. I kind of think the last few pages are a little out of order, but I like the peaceful feeling of the ending.
Dec 07, 2009 Meredith rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens-lit
i don't think this is quite as good as Goodnight Moon--the story isn't as refine and the pacing is a bit off for me--but it is still another excellent story by Margaret Wise Brown. she has this interesting way of looking at things that is just rare today--she always manages to see not just what is there, but what is not, and she celebrates the quiet things. barnyard animals are always a big hit around here, and this book features a lot!
Jan 15, 2010 jacky rated it really liked it
This was read at story time. I didn't write my review right away, so I'm having trouble remembering the details of this book. However, I was surprised to see that it was by the author of Good night Moon since it is so different. There are lots of books that deal with animals, farm animals in particular, but this one was good. From what I recall, it was more fun to read than books that just list the animals and their sounds.
Mar 29, 2012 Jeanette rated it it was amazing
Possibly my favorite Margaret Wise Brown book. Yes, I like it more than Goodnight Moon. But then I've never been a huge Goodnight Moon fan. Really, the only reason I like Goodnight Moon is because my kids love it so much. But this is not Goodnight Moon this is Big Red Barn. Similar in its rhyming patterns to that other book I have mentioned too many times but so much more enjoyable. It does not help that I have a weakness for children's book about farms and farm animals.
Oct 16, 2013 Aoife rated it really liked it
This is a short, entertaining book featuring farm animals. The narrative is simple and repetitive and the illustrations by Felicia Bond are colourful and cartoonish, so this book is perfect for younger children. The words have a great tempo and there is lots of opportunity for young children to join in with animal noises and single words that they can just manage to say. The story is about animals that children know and recognise. The illustrations add to the simply tranquillity of the story.

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Margaret Wise Brown wrote hundreds of books and stories during her life, but she is best known for Goodnight Moon and The Runaway Bunny. Even though she died nearly 60 years ago, her books still sell very well.

Margaret loved animals. Most of her books have animals as characters in the story. She liked to write books that had a rhythm to them. Sometimes she would put a hard word into the story or p
More about Margaret Wise Brown...

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