John Coltrane’s Giant Steps

Chris Raschka takes words and images, and makes them sound like Coltrane jazz.  Read it through with a class full of kids, but be ready to hand out music parts:  the raindrop gives the tempo, the box makes bass sounds, snowflakes are the piano and finally the cat, meowing, is the saxophone.  Keep on reading as the kids make the soundtrack until “Stop!”  Fix it up, and start again, using the book as your guide. 

A great book for music education where each instrument does it’s part, Giant Steps is also a fun, interactive read.  Show this video of John Coltrane’s music after reading the book:


About AnEducationInBooks

Wendy BooydeGraaff is the author of Salad Pie, a children's picture book published by Ripple Grove Press. Her work has been published in Emrys Journal Online, The Emerson Review, Jellyfish Review, Bending Genres, SmokeLong Quarterly and Leopardskin & Limes, and is forthcoming in NOON. Read more work at or find her on Twitter @BooyTweets.
This entry was posted in Picture books, Word choice and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to John Coltrane’s Giant Steps

  1. momfog says:

    This is a great site! I’m never sure what to get my younger children when staring at the overcrowded shelves at the library. Now, I’ll just come here and make a list of books to check out or, most likely, reserve. My library isn’t the greatest in the world and I am always bringing in a list of books to “import” from other libraries. Now it will be an even longer list. The librarians will be so pleased.

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