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Lee Fox: 10 Little Hermit Crabs Japanese Kamishibai

Session Info:

10 Little Hermit Crabs is a popular counting backwards book for 1-6 year olds by best-selling children’s author, Lee Fox. Complimented beautifully by Shane McG’s dazzling illustrations, the book has been transformed into a Kamishibai storytelling theatre performance for schools and libraries.

Kamishibai is an ancient style of Japanese storytelling dating back to the 9th and 10th centuries when monks used it to impart the principles of Buddhist teaching to lay audiences. It was revived in the late 1920s when the kamishibai men (etoki or picture-tellers) rode through the streets of Japan with their storytelling theatres secured to their bicycles. They sold lollies to their young audiences (like Mr Whippy sells ice cream) then told the next thrilling episode of a much-loved story from Japanese culture.

Inspired by the possibilities for animation in the story, About Face puppeteer Annie Forbes made a kamishibai theatre with Shane McG’s bright, quirky illustrations. For her performance of 10 Little Hermit Crabs, Lee Fox uses the kamishibai theatre along with props, songs and interactive audience participation.



Children will enjoy interacting with the story in the following ways:

  • Rhyming, rhythm and repetition
  • Hand actions
  • Learning and singing two songs
  • Counting the hermit crabs in each scene

This is a unique, engaging and highly entertaining storytelling experience that will delight young audiences.

This is another fun counting book in rhyming verse that is begging to be read aloud. The littlies will love the repetition and the bold and playful illustrations.

–Good Reading Magazine, March 2011

Lee’s vibrant and endearing storytelling theatre of 10 Little Hermit Crabs was a wonderful treat for our children. They were totally captivated and delighted as was I

–T. Higgs, Manager Children’s and Family Services, Goldfields Library Corporation

Lee engaged them brilliantly, through action, song and repetition. They love the storytelling theatre and all the surprises along the way.

–R. Greene, Children’s Librarian, Bendigo Library

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