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Higgins Bend Song and Dance

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Higgins Bend Song and Dance by Jacqueline  Briggs Martin

Simon Henry is all business - fish business. He claims he can catch anything that swims, crawls, or floats. But when a wily old bait-stealing catfish named Oscar moves into the deep hole by Higgins Bend, folks begin to wonder if Simon Henry may have met his match. When Oscar steals the cranky fisherman's redworms and even his best five-day-old secret-recipe stinkbait, Simon Henry's skill is put to the test. And so begins the great battle between Simon Henry and the wily Oscar. Neighbors watch and wait . . . until the night Simon Henry comes up with his best bait yet and Oscar takes Simon and his old friend Potato Kelly on the ride of their lives. An original tall tale sure to elicit belly laughs from both young and old alike.

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✒️ Author & illustrator

Author: Jacqueline  Briggs Martin

Website for Jacqueline  Briggs Martin

Other books by Jacqueline  Briggs Martin

Illustrator: Brad Sneed

Website for Brad Sneed

Other books by Brad Sneed

📖 Topics from the book:

Visit each topic page for downloads, lessons, etc. specific to that topic.

📂 Units, Activities, and Resources for Higgins Bend Song and Dance

Curriculum Connections for Higgins Bend Song and Dance
Higgins Bend Song and Dance is the tall-tale of a poor fisherman named Simon Henry who lives on the river by Higgins Bend and swears he can catch anything that "swims, crawls, or floats." His friend Potato Kelly, who owns the bait and chowder shop near Higgins Bend bets Simon Henry that he cannot catch the wily catfish, Oscar. When Oscar steals Simon Henry's doughballs, his fat redworms and his best five day old secret recipe stinkbait the contest is on and Simon Henry vows "to get up early, work late, and sleep in my boots" until that fish is caught. If you like fishing, like rivers, or just like to laugh, you will like this story.

Fish of the Great Lakes
University of Wisconsin Sea Grant Institutes website. Resources and publications you can download for free.

Why are we featuring this book?

Higgins Bend Song and Dance is a book featured in Five in a Row, a literature-based unit study curriculum. Many families use FIAR for all but the grammar/reading and math, and others use it in conjunction with other resources. Above is information about the author and illustrator, story summaries, and links to lesson plans and websites that are great go-alongs for Higgins Bend Song and Dance. Please note that these resources are meant to complement, not replace, the Five in a Row units. The Five in a Row volumes are inexpensive and well worth the investment.

As featured on

US News & World Report, Forbes, KQED, HuffPost,, Money, Healthline Parenthood, Family Education, Parents, Scholastic