Cover from CURIOUS George by H.A. Rey. Copyright © 1941,
renewed 1969 by Margret E. Rey and H.A. Rey. Curious George®,
including without limitation the character’s name and the character’s
likenesses, are registered trademarks of Houghton Mifflin
Harcourt Publishing Company.Used by permission. All rights reserved
Although the focus of my book, Story Frames for Teaching Literacy, is on narrative non-fiction, I also discuss story structure through the use of fictional books like those found in the Curious George series. I was delighted to discover a nonfiction connection in a story of how the creators of the famous series, Hans Augusto Rey and his wife, Margaret Rey, fled from Paris to escape the Nazis in 1940 by bicycle during World War 2. Now I can explore historical events and connect to the social studies curriculum with my students even while exploring something as fanciful as a monkey getting into trouble through a series of comical misadventures.
One of the only items the Reys were able to take with them when they escaped Paris was the manuscript for Curious George. They eventually ended up in the U.S. where the first book in the series was published in 1941. Many of the books are available in Spanish and other languages. The last book in the original series was published in 1966 and entitled, Curious George Goes to the Hospital. Subsequent books have come out written by other writers such as Curious George Goes to the Bookstore.
Cover from MARGRET AND H.A. REY’S CURIOUS GEORGE GOES TO
A BOOKSTORE. Jacket art © 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publishing Company. Curious George®, including without limitation
the character’s name and the character’s likenesses,
are registered trademarks of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing
Company. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Read about the escape of the Rey’s in The JourneyThat Saved Curious George: The True Wartime Escape of Margaret and H.A. Rey, written by Louise Borden and illustrated by Allan Drummond. ISBN 978-054-7417462. 80 pages. (2010) HMH.
Blog by HMH https://www.hmhco.com/blog/celebrating-curiosity-day-2018-the-history-of-curious-george
For suggestions for how students can create their own Curious George stories, see the author's note at the end of Curious George Goes to the Bookstore.
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