A Few of My Favorite Books: Peter Spier

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If there were just one special book that I could have from my childhood it would be People by Peter Spier! I have the fondest childhood memories of repeatedly checking this book out from the library and spending hours examining ther detailed illustrations of people from all over the world. When I finally came across this book in my adult life, I grabbed it up for my own personal collection of children’s literature. Eventually, I found another copy for my classroom and was saddened by the fact that none of my students have connected with it in the same way that I so fondly remember…

That hasn’t stopped me from introducing several of Spier’s books to my students over the years and I still keep a copy of People on the shelf just in case…

Spier’s books are beautifully illustrated with very detailed drawings and often wordless or nearly so. There is always much to talk about when reading his books and someone always seems to notice some new detail in the pictures. I appreciate that the books are sparsely worded which allows me the freedom to interpret the book based on student interests and needs.

Here are a few of my favorite Peter Spier books:


Gobble, Growl, Grunt 

Crash, Boom, Bang 


Noah’s Ark

The Fox went out on a Chilly Night

This one is a great folksong and is fun to sing rather than read. Here's one of my favorite versions of the song (there are many other versions available!):


We the People

Unfortunately, many of Spier's books are currently out of print. However, I've had good luck finding his books at thrift stores, Amazon used books and on Etsy. Happy hunting! 

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