Australia Day is just around the corner and even for those of us who struggle a little with celebrating this on the date we do, this is a fabulous book to read!
In a few, brief, rhyming pages, Mem Fox manages to say so much. Each page is dedicated to an Australian from a different background, from multi-generational Aussies, to Aboriginal Australians, to immigrants and finally, a refugee, still awaiting acceptance.
Why I love it:
This book is a beautiful, compassionate and sensitive look at one of the elements that makes Australia so wonderful, whilst also touching on a subject that still needs a lot of attention. The page dedicated to the refugee awaiting entry, made me cry, which was unfortunate as I was reading the book whilst in a children’s play centre!!
The illustrations, by Ronojoy Ghosh are colourful and engaging and beautifully compliment the text.
This is such a perfect book to read with your children and open a discussion about diversity, adversity and the benefits of our wonderful multicultural country.
It would also be a terrific way to focus on world geography – go through the pages with an Australian map and a world map on hand and locate all the different countries the children have come from and all the different cities they live in now.
Themes to discuss with your child:
- What it means to be Australian
- The phrase ‘The lucky country’
- Australia’s history
- World geography
- Australian geography
- Kindness and compassion
Questions to ask your child:
- What do you think this book might be about?
- Do you think this is a fiction book (a story) or a non-fiction book (facts)?
- Is this a book you want to read? Why/why not?
- What does the medal on the cover, say? What do you think this means?
- How many children are pictured on the cover?
- Who wrote this book? Can you think of any other books by the same author?
- Did you enjoy this story? Why/why not?
- Which page did you like the best? Why?
- Which page is the most like your own story?
- Which page (if any) made you feel a little sad? Why?
- Why do you think the author wrote this book?
- What do you think is the best thing about having country filled with people from all over the world?
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