Waking Dragons, dragon picture books, rhyming picture books, Jane Yolen, Derek Anderson

Picture Book of the Day: Waking Dragons

Dragon Picture Book of the Day

I’m going to be posting on Picture Book of the Day every Friday. I’m in a Picture Book of the Day Facebook group along with a small group of children’s book bloggers.

Monday – Jdaniel’s Mom4

Tuesday – What Do We Do All Day

Wednesday­­ – The Pleasantest Thing

Thursday – Reading Confetti

Friday – Pragmatic Mom

Bethany from No Twiddle Twaddle is organizing this and eventually each of us will post twice a month. She is looking for a few more children’s book bloggers if you are interested.


My son and I chose Waking Dragons for our first Picture Book of the Day. It’s the perfect picture book for preschools who love dragons and the scramble of the morning routine getting ready for school!

Waking Dragons, dragon picture books, rhyming picture books, Jane Yolen, Derek Anderson


Waking Dragons by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Derek Anderson

A young knight and his puppy must wake the dragons before school in this charming rhyming picture book reminiscent of How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight?

Dragons wake up,

dragons rise.

Dragons open dragon eyes.

We fell in love with Derek Anderson’s illustrations from Hot Rod Hamster. He brings the rhymes to life with brightly colored friendly-looking dragons, drawn from interesting perspectives.


How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight? by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Mark Teague

A sweet rhyming picture book about how nicely the dinosaurs go to bed at night (unlike, perhaps, the kids who are reading their bedtime story and excel at stalling their bedtime). Ahem, I referring to my children here, especially my youngest.

Hot Rod Hamster by Cynthia Lord, illustrated by Derek Anderson

Can a small rodent win a car race against much bigger and mean looking dogs? Cynthia Lord uses an unusual form of rhyming in this very fun picture book. Derek Anderson’s illustrations extend the story by giving young readers options in helping to decide the construction of the hamster’s new hot rod. We like to pick out parts as we read the story and “construct” our own hot rod.


Thank you to Ann of Doodles and Jots for her dragon picture book recommendation:

The Kiss that Missed by David Melling

It’s bedtime, but the little prince’s goodnight kiss from his dad, the king, has gone astray. It has missed the little prince’s cheek, drifted out the window, and escaped into the forest. The brave and fearless knight is sent out on a mission to retrieve it. A whimsical, funny picture book!

Click on image of book to view at Amazon, or here at Barnes and Noble.

It’s a linky party! I’m linking up with post with Teacher Treasure Hunter.

By Mia Wenjen, PragmaticMom


  1. Elle Carter Neal

    Ah, that looks adorable! There are some more pictures over on the Amazon site – that little knight is so cute!

    We’re so into dinosaurs at the moment (4 yo). It amazes me how the same concepts become popular over and over again with children. As a child I remember being into dinosaurs, too, and then moving onto astronomy, and one of my friends has just mentioned that her little budding paleontologist (age 6) has now ditched the dinosaurs for books about the planets.
    Elle Carter Neal recently posted…RevisionsMy Profile

    • Hi Elle,
      I am laughing as I read your comment because my son went from: dinosaurs to Pokemon to aliens to hybrid graphic novels to graphic novels to Percy Jackson. Maybe it’s a boy thing? We somehow missed Star Wars and had only a very small moment with trucks and diggers. I’d love him to give astronomy a go too! And his interest in Dinosaurs is still there! Do you think all boys love T-Rex and dinos? Or just ours?
      Pragmatic Mom recently posted…Picture Book of the Day: Waking DragonsMy Profile

      • Elle Carter Neal

        Well, not just boys… my son’s best friend is a girl and she is so into dinosaurs her mother can’t even coax her into accepting a Schleish horse as a gift! She wants nothing but dinosaurs. She is actually the reason my son has become hooked on them as he copies everything she does and likes.

        Funnily enough, we went to the library yesterday and there were two other children hanging around the dinosaur books – a boy and girl a few years older than my son. The boy told us he had a book about T-Rex at home, so my son piped up and said T-Rex was his favourite. The boy retorted that ALL the dinosaurs were his favourite! Then the girl started listing some actual names like velociraptor and giganotosaurus; nobody wanted to compete with that. LOL

        I need to bump Percy Jackson up higher on my to-read list; I keep hearing about these books.
        Elle Carter Neal recently posted…RevisionsMy Profile

        • Hi Elle,
          Good point about boys AND girls liking dinosaurs. My girls didn’t but I can see the universal appeal. My son loved reading about lesser known dinosaurs as well. That was a fun phase!

          Percy Jackson is great but I’ve found it’s a Love It or Hate It series with kids. I think kids who are gamers like it — very plot driven with lots of action like a video game version of a book. I am a big fan but my middle child is not. My other two kids are as well.
          Pragmatic Mom recently posted…Easy Exercise Ideas You Can Sneak In Every DayMy Profile

  2. That book looks like a great read; I already love the cover illustration. Thanks for the recommendation!
    Nina recently posted…How to promote delayed gratification in childrenMy Profile

  3. Vanita

    oh the preschoolers are going to love this! they love rhymes and colorful pictures. thank you girlfriend! i’m heading over to order now!
    Vanita recently posted…Why I’m Saying NO to Mom Blog Group GiveawaysMy Profile

  4. I’m so glad that you joined our group, Pragmatic Mom! We haven’t read Waking Dragons yet, so I will have to look for it!
    Bethany recently posted…And yet another Julia Dweck book free today . . .My Profile

  5. Ann

    Hey thanks we will have to check it out!

    A dragon book we like is The Kiss that Misses : )
    Ann recently posted…Snow SurpriseMy Profile

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