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Cover image for The sky is falling!
The sky is falling!
First edition.
New York : Orchard Books, an imprint of Scholastic Inc., 2015.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 26 x 29 cm
In this humorous version of the traditional tale, Chicken Little panics when an acorn falls on her head and sets off a dance frenzy among the other chickens, and while squirrel and the other animals understand what really happened, they soon join in the dancing--because it is fun.
Program Information:
Reading Counts K-2 1.1 1.


Call Number

On Order



Chicken Little thinks that the sky is falling -- and inspires a dance craze!

Award-winning author and illustrator Mark Teague tells his humorous version of "Chicken Little" with a zany twist!

When an acorn hits Chicken Little on the head, she panics and screeches, "The sky is falling! The sky is falling!" Squirrel, who knew a thing or two about acorns, tried to set the record straight, as did the other animals. The chickens started dancing--they moonwalked, they mamboed, and they did the twist. Pretty soon the other animals joined them. You can't blame someone for wanting to dance, even if the sky isn't really falling!

Author Notes

Mark Teague is an American author and illustrator of children's books. Teague has illustrated over 40 books including the Poppleton series, the First Graders from Mars series, The Great Gracie Chase, and other favorites. He wrote and self-illustarted several Mrs. LaRue children's books.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 5

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-The chickens think the sky is falling, so they begin to do all sorts of dances. The other farm animals know that it's just an acorn falling out of a tree, but they join in the dancing, too. When the hungry fox that caused all the commotion (he hit the acorn with a slingshot) sees the others dancing, he accepts the chickens' dance challenge. Teague's squaking chickens are priceless, as is their line dancing, one claw raised and beaks wide open. Cats, rabbits, and squirrels look on in disbelief as the birds contine to do the moonwalk, mambo, and twist. This distraction saves their lives and proves to the other animals that chickens are smart after all. VERDICT A laugh-out-loud version of the classic tale.-Tanya Boudreau, Cold Lake Public Library, AB, Canada © Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publisher's Weekly Review

A lurking fox gets his comeuppance during a barnyard dance party in Teague's absurdity-driven take on "Chicken Little." With visions of chicken dinner on his mind, Fox uses a slingshot to knock an acorn from a tree, causing it to fall on Chicken Little's head. She immediately sounds the familiar warning that the sky is falling, but instead of running away, she busts a move and encourages her friends to join her. After watching the animals moonwalk, mambo, and form a boisterous conga line, Fox tries to lure the revelers to his den, "the perfect place to hide" from a falling sky. Instead, the chickens taunt Fox into cutting a rug with them ("He did the limbo, the lindy, and the lambada") until an apple falls onto his head-thanks to Chicken Little. Readers may be just as perplexed as Fox is about why the chickens respond to theoretical doom with dance numbers, but Teague's comically detailed images of a waltzing cat and rabbit, as well as the chickens wing-to-wing in a Rockettes-style kick line, will conjure lots of laughs. Ages 3-5. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Horn Book Review

This twist begins traditionally enough, with the acorn hitting Chicken Little on the head and her familiar refrain about the sky falling. I dont think so, said Squirrel. Squirrel knew a thing or two about acorns. See, it fell from a tree. Nevertheless, soon all the chickens have worked themselves into such a frenzy that they burst intodance. (The moonwalk, the mambo, the twist; the rhumba, the waltz, the hokey-pokey.) Good-sized illustrations develop the texts wry humor, capturing the wild-eyed dithering of the chickens and creating contrast with the other animals obvious scorn (Squirrel explained about the acorn. You must be kidding, said Cat). Well-designed layouts bring energy to each spread as chickens dance right off the pages, and soon all the animals have caught the spirit and joined a conga line. Foxs presence grows throughout, at first lurking small in the background (where he can be seen firing that acorn at Chicken Littles head), then slowly looming larger with cutlery and a cookbook until he and his chicken-heavy menu dominate half a double-page spread. A little mocking goads even him into dancing, but then an apple falls from a tree and knocks him out. A careful look shows that the apple had help and that Chicken Little deserves more credit than she has received. julie roach (c) Copyright 2015. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

The age-old "Chicken Little" story, but with a change-up.An acorn falls on Chicken Little's head in the barnyard, and, as in the iconic original, she cries, "The sky is falling!" Squirrel points out that it's just an acorn, but soon all the chickens in the farm are flapping their wings, taking up the cry. Squirrel, Rabbit, and Cat can't believe how dumb the chickens are, but then they notice that the chickens are actually dancing, not running around in a panic as they first supposed. It looks like fun, and soon everyone joins in, except Fox, who is baffled that his plan isn't working (since it was he who lobbed the acorn in the first place in an attempt to lure panicked chickens to his den). The messagecelebrate surprising experiences instead of panickingis an apt and worthwhile one. But where the book bogs down is an occasional too-self-conscious cleverness ("Soon, all the chickens were in a tizzy. Chickens are like that") and the disconnect between Teague's carefully rendered illustrative style and the lighthearted story. The pages are well-designed, but the scenes often seem more stodgy than lively.Though this twist on the familiar tale is somewhat heavy-handed in both narrative and image, its sense of fun comes through clearly nonetheless. (Picture book. 2-5) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

Teague's retelling of Chicken Little does, indeed, star a panicked chicken, but it adds a trickster tricked subplot and lots of dancing break dancing, the mambo, the twist, and even a kick line. It all starts with Fox firing an acorn from a slingshot, scoring a direct shot on Chicken Little's head. Chicken Little, eyes crossed and feathers ruffled, starts squawking that the sky is falling. Teague's twist is that panic in the barnyard takes the form of dancing, which is so irresistibly fun that all the animals join in, forming a boisterous conga line. Even Fox, who has salivated in the background with knife and fork, cookbook, and chicken-centric menu, starts dancing. Teague's paintings make the action luminous, and his outsize animal drawings make it seem as if the reader is watching a puppet show up close. Teague's The Three Little Pigs and the Somewhat Bad Wolf ?(2013) is a perfect complement to this wonderfully zany take on an old tale.--Fletcher, Connie Copyright 2015 Booklist