A true melding of math and story. Through this warm, joyful story, part of the Small Talk Books® series, parents and caregivers can learn how to model talk and actions that help children develop a stronger understanding of number and how math is part of our lives.

This material is based upon work supported in part by TERC under a grant from the Heising-Simons Foundation.

More about the project.

Banana for Two / Banana para dos

Mama, her toddler, and two stuffed bunnies turn an outing to the grocery store into a fun opportunity to talk, laugh, and learn a little math along the way. Baby is excited to choose one box of favorite cereal, hold two containers of yogurt, and find one banana. As they fill their cart with items in quantities of one and two, Mama lets her baby hold each item while connecting the familiar idea of known body parts such as one hand and two feet to concepts of one and two. In this engaging, concrete way, toddlers begin understanding simple math principles. In the checkout lane, Baby giggles as one bunny goes for a ride. Back home Mama prepares a snack. How will she share one banana between the two of them? As she cuts the banana in half, her child proudly points out and recognizes the two pieces of their snack, showing an understanding of the notion of two.


Ellen Mayer, author of the Small Talk Books® series, is a former Harvard Graduate School of Education researcher and early literacy home visitor. She has been awarded a writing fellowship from the Heising-Simons Foundation, to create math-infused fiction picture books. Ellen writes her children's books to entertain and educate both children and the adults who read to them. She holds an M.Phil. in Sociology from Columbia University.  Visit Ellen's website: ellenmayerbooks.com.

Ying-Hwa Hu is an award-winning illustrator. Her work has been exhibited at the Bologna Book Fair and the Society of Illustrators Original Art Show. Visit Ying-Hwa's website: pencilmoonstudio.com.

Published by Star Bright Books.

Available to purchase here.