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Children's Fiction Jewish

Can Hens Give Milk? Read-Along

by (author) Joan Betty Stuchner

illustrated by Joe Weissmann

read by David Skulski

Orca Book Publishers
Initial publish date
Sep 2016
Jewish, Farm & Ranch Life, Humorous Stories
Recommended Age
3 to 5
Recommended Grade
p to k
Recommended Reading age
3 to 5
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Sep 2016
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


Tova lives with her family on a small farm in the famous town of Chelm, a mythical village populated, according to Jewish folklore, by fools. Tova's farm has hens and even a rooster, but no cow. Her mother, Rivka, wishes they could afford to buy a cow, so they could have fresh milk and butter every day. One night Tova's father has a dream about how to get milk without actually owning a cow. He asks Tova to help him find a way to get milk from their hens, and the results are hilarious. Finally, to the family's joy and the hens' relief, the problem is solved by none other than the wise Rabbi of Chelm himself, and a little extra help from Tova.

About the authors

Joan Betty Stuchner has a head full of stories. Instead of playing the fiddle, she plays with words; on stage and on television, with students in a classroom, in poems and stories—which includes her book A Peanut Butter Waltz. She lives with her husband and son in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Richard Row was not born with the ability to draw; he watched carefully, then practiced, practiced, practiced! He worked as a commerical artist for many years, then moved to books, illustrating versions of Anne of Green Gables and Heidi. He lives in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, with his wife and three children.

Joan Betty Stuchner's profile page

Joe Weissmann's profile page

David Skulski's profile page

Excerpt: Can Hens Give Milk? Read-Along (by (author) Joan Betty Stuchner; illustrated by Joe Weissmann; read by David Skulski)

Tova rushed into her parents' room. "What's wrong, Papa?"
"Let me ask you a question," said Shlomo. "Why does a cow give milk?"
"Everyone knows that, Papa. A cow gives milk because she eats grass."
Shlomo and Rivka beamed at their youngest daughter.
"What a wise child you are," said Shlomo. "So if we feed grass to our hens, they will still lay eggs, but they will also give us milk."
"Shlomo," said Rivka, "you are a genius."
"I am indeed," said Shlomo, and he blushed.

Editorial Reviews

"This addition to the canon has all the delicious deadpan of the old [Chelm] tales, as well as their familiar population of hilarious idiots. Literary idiots make powerless little readers feel powerful, and smart."

Tablet Magazine

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