“Yay” she does a quiet little gig and claps her hands. It’s back!
The Silver Button
Author/Illustrator: Bob Graham
Published by: Walker Books 2013
Age: 3 – 6 years
Theme: A moment in time,
Opening sentences: At 9.59 on Thursday morning, Jodie drew a duck Top hat, cane and boots of the softest leather. On the boots she put silver buttons: one.. two… Her pen hovered in the air for the final button. Jodie’s brother Jonathan pushed slowly to his feet.
Synopsis: From Amazon – At 9:59 on a Thursday morning, Jodie draws a duck. As her pen hovers in the air, ready to add a silver button to the duck’s boot, her little brother Jonathan pushes to his feet, sways, and takes his first step. At the exact same moment, their mom plays a pennywhistle in the kitchen, a man buys fresh bread at the bakery, a baby is born, a soldier says good-bye to his mom, a granddad and granddaughter play with leaves in the park, a blackbird finds a worm. . . . From an ordinary scene of an apartment strewn with child’s artwork and toys to a bird’s-eye view of a city morning pulsing with life, Bob Graham celebrates a whole world-vision in a single moment, encouraging readers to stop, observe, and savour the world around them.
Why I like it: I love the concept of this; a moment in time. It may be a bit over the head for some younger ones but the book alone offers a lot of questions, thoughts, and discussions with young kids. To think of a moment and wonder what is happening around them at that precise time, not just in the next room, but outside, across the street, in your neighbourhood or next town. The discussions could be endless. As Jodie is about to colour a silver button on a drawing, her wee brother takes his first step, and everywhere not just at home or in your town but elsewhere things are happening, day is turning to night, night is turning to day, phones are ringing, the paper is being deliveryed and a plane takes off. Adults as well as children will love this book.
Bob Graham (an Australian) cleverly uses close up and wide-lens view of a neighbourhood to show what is happening at that precise moment in time. The illustrations are very softly done, whimsical and detailed catching the moment in different view-points, like through a window or from the sky. I love how the story comes back at the last page. Jodie’s wee brother falls back down and the clock strikes 10. A minute has past!
Resources/Findings: Here is a great New York times review with some pictures of the book… http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/06/books/the-silver-button-by-bob-graham.html?_r=0
This book won the 2014: CBCA Book of the Year Awards 2014 Winner – Honour Book
A teachers guide for classroom activies… http://www.petaa.edu.au/teaching-resources/2014-cbca-guide/silver-buttons Great moment in time activities. Other activities would include blowing up a balloon, writing your name etc…
For older kids – studying what is happening at that precise time in another country of their choice. Writing a short essay on that country or city and comparing them.
You heard me skipping and jumping for joy before, didn’t you? I just couldn’t help myself. I’m so pleased to be able to bring you some more special books that have come my way and be able to share them with you and join other great writers over at Susanna’s Blog, where there are literally hundreds of book reviews to view. So pop over and visit the lovely author, Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog and find the tab for Perfect Picture Books. Her blog is full of resources links and activities associated with books reviewed by many authors.