ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Souperchicken by Mary Jane and Herm Auch: A Children's Book that Promotes Reading

Updated on April 30, 2018
wannabwestern profile image

I've written over 50 articles about children's literature for library, preschool or home settings. I have a BA in English Lit from BYU.

Souperchicken by Mary Jane and Herm Auch Henrietta helps her friends avoid becoming the main course in this deliciously silly tale about a chicken who isn't, and the power of reading.
Souperchicken by Mary Jane and Herm Auch Henrietta helps her friends avoid becoming the main course in this deliciously silly tale about a chicken who isn't, and the power of reading.

Reading Saves the Day

In SouperChicken by Mary Jane and Herman Auch (2004), reading saves the day for the plucky heroine and her unwitting farm animal friends. SouperChicken is a tale about a passionate reader named Henrietta. Henrietta is at first teased, then applauded when her reading skills help her foil the farmer's plot to turn her friends into chicken soup.

The trouble on the chicken farm begins on the day when Henrietta and her aunties are told they are going on vacation, because the aunties have stopped laying eggs. The farmer cackles to himself as he makes one silly joke after another relating to cooking and chicken soup. Henrietta is suspicious of the farmer's behavior, but her worst fears are confirmed when the truck taking the Hens reveals the name of a popular soup-making company. Henrietta is beside herself, and bravely takes a wild ride on the chicken truck to the chicken factory in hope of rescuing her friends. Along the way she meets other unwitting animals who also need to be rescued on her journey to the chicken factory, including pigs on a sausage truck and cows on a hamburger truck. Henrietta wings her way through rescuing her friends by reading directions and piecing together clues. She keeps her head and reads her way through a complicated security system out of the factory floor, and then looks for clues to help find a farm where she won't be in danger of becoming lunch. Henrietta's prowess takes the book to a satisfying conclusion with a humorous twist where our heroine and friends find respite from their brush with doom at the vegeterian's organic farm.

You will enjoy the puns, word play, and visual humor of this silly tale with an important message about the power of reading. In the story, Henrietta persists in acknowledging the importance of learning to read, and even more important, to think critically about her reading.

Though her friends tease her for being a little too much of a bookworm (bookhen?), she ignores the teasing and continues to pursue her studies. At the end of the story, Henrietta becomes a reading teacher, making this book a perfect gift for any educator who plays a role in empowering future readers and leaders of tomorrow.

The moral of the story? Knowledge is power, and reading is a sure path to knowledge. And conversely, ignorance not only ISN'T bliss, it is downright dangerous. If you are looking for a perfect Teacher Appreciation Week gift or want to make a meaningful addition to a new teacher's library, consider this book.

Book Design

The illustrations by Herm Auch are vividly colorful, giving the book a wildly over-the-top feeling, The large page size make this an excellent choice for reading aloud, and the vivid pictures are easy to see. The expressions on the faces of the animals are really funny. Take for instance, the looks on the pigs' faces when they learn they are headed for the sausage factory.

The illustrations are loaded with visual jokes, including the names of the books that the hens read at the end of the story. The illustrations complement the text of the story very well. The Auchs make a great collaborative team.

Themes

  • Farm animals
  • Chickens
  • Humor
  • Reading
  • Problem solving
  • Organic farming
  • Making choices
  • Importance of Education


Reading this Book in a Classroom

SouperChicken is an appropriate read-aloud for the Kindergarten and up crowd. Teachers will enjoy the exciting and page-turning plot. The chicken-related wordplay in this story will have you clucking to yourself.

As a read alone storybook, I recommend this book for the average early second grader, where the transition to reading chapter books begins about the middle of the second grade year. This book has a lot of text in its 32 pages, so I don't recommend it for beginning readers, unless the reader has a special interest in chickens.

Based on this review or your own personal experience:

See results

© 2009 Carolyn Augustine

Comments

Submit a Comment

  • wannabwestern profile imageAUTHOR

    Carolyn Augustine 

    6 years ago from Iowa

    The Auchs make a hilarious author/illustrator team. They have written quite a collection of zany and far-fetched stories. Many of them are poultry tales.

  • Enlydia Listener profile image

    Enlydia Listener 

    6 years ago from trailer in the country

    Funny and interesting story line for a book.

working

This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

Show Details
Necessary
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Features
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Marketing
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Statistics
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)