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Even the Littlest

Preschoolers share party cake with other diverse picnickers in city park as crumbs fall to pet dog, a cat, rabbit, mouse, pigeon and ant.

Photo of Arlene Mark
8 3

Written by

Pre-school’s out. It’s party time.

 Family picnic. Play and climb.

Bubbles, races, art to make.

Pizza, hot dogs, tasty cake.

Slices, icing, sprinkles, yum!

Kids dig in, but still there’s some.

 Carla shares with little Pete,

Who’s happy with a pre-school treat.

Pieces tumble off Pete’s chin.

Pup grabs one. Delicious win.

More crumbs drop, break up, and bounce,

Target for a cat to pounce.

Bunny bites a piece so small.

Rolls it home, a rabbit’s ball.

A pinch is left, just two wee nibbles.

A speedy mouse chews one but dribbles.

He hurries home but leaves a smidgen.

Fast food for a swooping pigeon.

 She pecks and gulps but leaves a munch.

 Not much but makes a perfect lunch,

  For ant who hauls it to the nest,

  Where workers swarm, feast on the rest.

  So cake’s all gone. But kids are here.

  Now watch the ice cream disappear.

Describe the intended vision for your early childhood book manuscript in 1-2 sentences

The story can be read to preschool children or young children at home as they point to actions happening in the verses. Children can also act out the story, showing how everyone, including even the littlest gets a piece of the cake and fun.

Share your suggested book title

Even the Littlest

PLEASE USE THE VERSION OF THIS QUESTION AT THE TOP OF THE SUBMISSION FORM: Share a draft of your manuscript (250 word limit, not including title).

How has this book been informed by early childhood language development research and evidence? (response minimum 250 Characters)

The story has been informed by early childhood language of having the lines rhyme with familiar action words or objects and by featuring words about activities that young children gravitate to. It is also informed by actions of sharing and using appropriate language. In the best of child developmental progress, having the children use large motor skills of racing and climbing and the use of small motor skills of making art and eating cake during the picnic, interacting with children of all cultures and socializing in positive ways and mostly, having fun and wanting to read and go through the motions again and again.

How have you crafted this manuscript to resonate with and/or reflect the experiences of those living in urban contexts? (optional question)

Illustrations can show the picnic taking place in an urban park with families of many ethnicities. All join in the fun...even the biggest.

Location: Country

Greenwich CT, USA

Location: State or Department


Location: City


Website URL (optional question)

Tell us more about you / your team

Writing stories that empower children to thrive is what excites me each day as I begin. I have worked as a teacher of special education students and always had the goal of truly finding the specialness in each student and communicating that to each one. As a Contributing Editor of Greenwich Time for several years, my articles about children appeared regularly. I am a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers’ and Illustrators, The Writers Lab at Bank Street College, and Greenwich Pen Women. I serve on the board of Family Centers in Greenwich. My husband and I adopted a class of Special Education students as part of the “I Have a Dream” program in 1986 and stayed with the class for more than ten years, supporting them in school and higher education. I volunteered with various mentoring programs and organizations in New York City. I am on the board of Family Centers in Greenwich where I work with parents of Head Start students on Policy Committee. I value the joy in children.

Provide an example visual identity for a look and feel you might like to achieve. ( (optional question, 3-5 visuals)

Multiple Choice - Have you been previously published (online, self-published, and print included)?

  • Yes

If yes, please list titles and publications.

“The Path to Kindness – A story from Myanmar," July-August, Spider,The Magazine for Children.In Highlights for Children: “Do Not Open Until the Year 3000,” “Am I a Frog Yet?” “No Petting the Orangutans, Please,” non-fiction, “Racing Team,” Best in Issue Award. “Circus of the Senses,” Spider, “Mystery Killer—A Lobster Whodunit,” Skipping Stones, Paraverbal Communication with Children: Not Through Words Alone, Plenum Press, To the Tower, A Greenwich Adventure, Greenwich Historical Society. More.

Do you have an agent?

  • Previously yes, currently no

How did you hear about the Challenge? (optional question)

  • Someone in my network (word of mouth)

What best describes you? (optional question)

  • I am/we are creatives, writers, or artists
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Attachments (4)


Borrowed from photos online just to give you the idea of feeling I want to create


Join the conversation:

Photo of Arlene Mark

Thank you, @DeletedUser  for your kind comment. I'm new to this site and find it a bit confusing to get around and reply back but think I got it. The cat wandered down from the apartments nearby, having intuited all the fun the children were having and figuring there must be something good for me. Thank you for noting that and next time I submit this, I will rhyme further to explain cat. Did you submit and can I read your story? Arlene

Photo of DeletedUser


Hi Arlene, I guess it will be clearer in the illustrations where the cat comes from. A squirrel would be fun too but it‘s not an easy word to rhyme!

I have two stories ‘Where Is The Bus Going Today?’ and ‘City Farm Fun’. If you click on my name you'll see them at the bottom of my profile page. Thank you for reading them :o)

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