I only discovered the world of Eric Carle a few years ago. But since Aleksander was born, these books have become some of my favorites. At my baby shower, Anika gave me a German version of The Very Hungry Caterpillar (Die kleine Raupe Nimmersatt). I can now recite the whole thing by heart I’m not sure I can say that about the English version!
For Aleksander’s 2nd birthday, we did a Hungry Caterpillar theme. It was really fun putting all the details together I was especially pleased with the caterpillar cupcake-cake:
The day of his party, he even said one of his first German words: Raupe (caterpillar)! He liked the decorations so much, we left most of them up in our basement. You could say we have quite a thing for all things Caterpillar here, especially in German….
Last summer, I got a DVD of die kleine Raupe story plus four more … all in German! Although he didn’t show much interest in it at first, Aleksander has fallen in love with this DVD just as much as I have. We watch it regularly. Each story is illustrated with animated drawings from the Eric Carle books. The images are beautiful and vibrant.
- Die kleine Raupe Nimmersatt
- Papa, bitte hol für mich den Mond vom Himmel
- Die kleine Grille singt ihr Lied
- Chamäleon Kunterbunt
- Ich male ein Lied
Although it isn’t listed on their website, the DVD is available through Alphabet Garten. You’d have to contact them, and they can get it in 3 weeks for about $25. It’s also available from amazon.de if that’s an option for you.
And did you know that there is a song in German about die kleine Raupe? (Nothing in English, though!) It’s called “Das Lied von der Raupe Nimmersatt” by Stephen Janetzko. You can dowload it from iTunes or amazon.com. I have to admit, it kind of annoyed me at first, but it has really grown on me! I sing the chorus to Aleksander whenever we see any caterpillar
I also know of an older recording by Ludger Edelkötter. It’s referred to as a Singspiel. And there is a song called “Der Schmetterling erinnert sich.” So far, I’ve only been able to find it used on amazon.de. A friend loaned me her old cassette from 1990. It’s a really cute rendition of the story set to music. Too bad it isn’t more readily available.
Finally, I’ve found a couple of audio books on CD that are available from amazon.de. When we went to Europe in December, I ordered two of them from amazon.de to be sent to my in-laws before we arrived.
- Die kleine Raupe
- Gute Reise, bunter Hahn
- Die kleine Grille singt ihr Lied
- Das kleine Glühwürmchen
- Die Affenmutter liebt ihr Kind
- Die kleine Spinne spinnt und schweigt
There is also a song called Das Geburtstagslied with music by Ulrich Maske.
Aleksander has really enjoyed listening to die kleine Raupe. It’s the story he knows best. I was surprised he was willing to sit and listen to the story without any pictures, but he does!
The second audio CD was a bit of a mistake. You see, it isn’t in Hochdeutsch (standard German), it’s in Sächsisch! Oops! It’s actually called De Glene Raupe Nimmersatt. I don’t know how that fact escaped me as I was ordering. Another lesson in why I shouldn’t do these things at night when I’m tired! Well, if you’re interested in German dialect, this audio CD is by Uwe Steimle (Jumbo Neue Medien & Verlag Gmbh, 2009).
So far those are all the German versions I’ve been able to find of the story. If you know of any others, let me know!
(No, I’m not getting compensation for advertising!)