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Balloons Over Broadway: The True Story Of The Puppeteer Of Macy's Parade (2011)

by Melissa Sweet(Favorite Author)
4.13 of 5 Votes: 2
0547199457 (ISBN13: 9780547199450)
HMH Books for Young Readers
review 1: Have you ever wondered who exactly came up with the idea for those enormous, like-like balloons that fill the air on Thanksgiving morning. This book tells it all. Tony Sarg, a puppeteer genius, moved to America to share his passion and zest for puppets and marionettes. After succeeding in creating a miniature parade for Macy's, he is hired to put together an actual parade for the immigrant workers. Inspired by the Indonesian Rod puppet, Tony created the huge, helium filled balloons that we all know and love. It was interesting to find out how Tony came up with new ideas for his balloons as the atmosphere of the parade changed. Even though Sweet created beautiful illustrations using a combination of watercolors and collages, it is Tony's original sketch work that ... morereally captures the reader's attention. It is inspiring to see the illustrations and text mirror the thoughts and drawings that appear in the sketches. The words are not organized to one particular part of each page, causing the eyes to bounce from one paragraph to the next. Overall, this true story is beautifully written and provides information about Thanksgiving Day that many people do not normally think about.
review 2: I found Balloons over Broadway to be a wonderfully crafted story not only of Tony Sarg's life's work but the evolution of that work and the technology relative to that work. Furthermore, Melissa Sweet implicitly documents the impact of that work and technology on the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade celebration and the holiday itself. Additionally, by reading the author's note, the reader can more clearly understand the significance of the balloons used in the parade. I think Melissa Sweet balances the genres of biography and non-fiction very well in order to display the ingenuity of Tony Sarg and the evolution of marionettes into massive helium balloons. As a future elementary teacher, this book has so much to offer children at all readings levels. The artwork is colorful and captivating; there is so much imagery to see and evaluate on each page. The text is rich, but not too difficult for more advanced readers. Nonetheless, even the words that form the basis of the story (marionette, puppeteer, broadway, pulley, gear) would be unfamiliar to most modern children whose entertainment is usually presented on television- creating a great opportunity for inquiry into vocabulary to make sense of the story's text. Moreover, the adjectives (jostling, spectacular, magnificent, articulated) that Sweet uses to describe the balloons would make great additions to any word wall. Furthermore, there is so much history and detail presented in this story that almost an entire cross-discipline unit could be created. This book could be incorporated into a unit based on culture and its celebrations. In order to incorporate mathematics, teachers could create an activity in which students become puppeteers themselves and are tasked with building their own marionettes for a specific cultural celebration. To make it even more authentic, the construction of those marionettes would have certain resource and financial constrictions based on the culture and area in which the students are "placed" as puppeteers. This addition to the project would incorporate a social studies lesson. Furthermore, the design and decoration of the marionette would incorporate art into the lesson. Another angle to take on a lesson based on this book and others similar to it, would be the evolution of puppets into marionettes into balloons and so forth to discuss technology at large and its change over the course of history. Finally, I think that the story of Tony Sarg as a successful entrepreneur and creator is essential to include in classrooms because teachers are tasked with illustrating to their students that they are capable of achieving their dreams conquering any obstacles. The inclusion of the detail that Tony was an immigrant to the U.S. makes this story an even better resource for a lesson on cultural diversity and equality of all of individuals not matter their background. I am so excited to use this in my future teaching career, as a read aloud book, for independent student reading and as a basis for lessons on culture or history. less
Reviews (see all)
I never knew! So cool with great information about parade balloons!Would be great for all ages.
Great illustrations. I would like to hear the review of a native New Yorker.
Great informational book about Tony Sarg and the Macy's Day Parade.
Wonderful, inspiring. Great biographical book for children.
t story, wonderful illustrations!
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