That's What Friends Are For

Meet Tugg and Teeny. Best friends since... well, forever! Tugg, a gorilla, and Teeny, a monkey, live together in their jungle neighborhood, Sidekick Thicket. As opposite as night and day, the two friends work and play together, each helping the other face life's challenges. That's What Friends Are For is a trio of stories that has Teeny helping hippo Margie Barge learn self-acceptance, finding a substitute horn for Rocko Rhino, and hosting a neighborhood picnic. All with the help of her best friend, Tugg. Engagingly written by Children's Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis, this beginning reader series is charmingly brought to life by Redwall artist Christopher Denise.

Format List Price Your Price Qty
$9.95 $9.95
$3.99 $3.99
$21.95 $21.95
Interest Level Grade 2 - Grade 3
Reading Level Grade 2
Dewey E
Lexile 460L
ATOS Reading Level 2.7
Guided Reading Level L
Language English
Publisher Sleeping Bear Press
Available Formats Hardcover (9781585365166), Paperback (9781585366873), PDF (9781410310200), Hosted ebook (9781627535717)
Copyright 2012, 2014
Number of Pages 40
Dimensions 6 x 9
Graphics Full-color illustrations Reviews "Tugg and Teeny"

Tugg and Teeny are the lead characters in this chapter book series for young independent readers. Tugg (a gorilla) and Teeny (a monkey) are proof that opposites attract. While they are as different as night and day, they are inseparable and help one another face life’s challenges. For example, in this inaugural title Teeny is impulsive and always wants to try new things. Some of Teeny’s ambitions include: becoming a musician, creating art and poetry and even playing detective when his friends begin losing things. But Tugg is the voice of reason and supports Teeny but also keeps him grounded so the pair can find good solutions for their friends’ problems. The three “chapters” in each of the books are actually separate mini adventures but should still give beginning readers the satisfaction of reading chapter books. The illustrations are very colorful and help bring the characters to life. The publisher, Sleeping Bear Press, recommends Tugg and Teeny for grades 2 to 3, but once kids reach second grade, their reading skills can develop rapidly, and they tend to look for books with plots that continue from chapter to chapter. First grade, or ages 6 to 7, is our recommendation for the sweet spot for this series. There are a total of three Tugg and Teeny books available in a variety of formats.

A Review of "That’s What Friends Are For" in School Library Journal

Gr 1-3–In this warmhearted beginning reader, best buddies Tugg, a lovable gorilla, and Teeny, an eager monkey, help a sad hippo find her self-esteem, a rhinoceros locate his missing horn, and avoid making their friends angry when Teeny leaves wet, violet-colored paint on the picnic-table bench prior to a neighborhood party. The lively illustrations are saturated with color and surrounded by abundant white space.

That's What Friends Are For - Teaching Guide

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Author: J. Patrick Lewis

J. Patrick Lewis is the author of 60 books for children, 50 of them in poetry. He is also the coauthor of three terrific children and four delightful grandchildren. He writes full-time, makes 30 elementary school visits a year, and keynotes at literature conferences. First Dog is his first book with his daughter Beth. Pat, or Grandpat, as his grandkids call him, is married and lives in Westerville, Ohio. 

Illustrator: Christopher Denise

Christopher Denise is an award-winning illustrator whose books haveappeared on The New York Times best-sellers list. Known for his workon the Redwall picture book series, he also works as a visual developmentartist and character designer for feature film animation. Christopher livesin Barrington, Rhode Island.

Full-color illustrations