The Lonely Giant
Published by: Walker Books Ltd 2016
Ages: 4 – 8 years
Theme: destruction, environmental kindness, friendship and freedom
Opening Lines: In a cave, on top of a crag, in the middle of a huge forest, lived a giant. The giant spent all day, day after day, doing what giants do…
Synopsis: From Amazon… After inadvertently destroying his home, a well-meaning giant must learn the true value of the natural world.
In the middle of a vast forest lives a giant who spends his days hurling and heaving, smashing and bashing. Over time, the animals flee as their homes vanish, the birdsong dwindles away to silence, and, finally, the forest itself disappears. Now the lonely giant misses the crackling warmth of a fire and the sweet songs of the yellow bird — but will he realize it’s up to him to restore what he loves? Sophie Ambrose debuts with a beautifully illustrated modern fable offering a poignant environmental twist.
Why I like this: This is beautifully illustrated in thick pencil drawing and watercolour giving a warmth background to a lonely giant. I loved the details like the up-close ragged fingernails in a couple of the illustrations. The text moves seamlessly across the page drawing you in. You just had to turn the page to find out if he is ever going to learn what he is doing with his destructive behavour. Unaware that his destroying the environment will cause the animals of the forest to move away it isn’t till the little yellow bird arrives that he eventually realises what he has done and sets about to fix it. It’s that saying “we often don’t know what we had or how good it was, until we lose it.” The giant learns a lesson in freedom, loss of friendship and what happens when the environment is destroyed, and how over time it can be restored with a little kindness. The underlying theme of environmental kindness is a great classroom topic and kids will be encouraged to think of ways they can become environmentally friendly.
Resources/Findings: Here is a great website on all things environmental friendly for kids… From making their own composts, to gardens, ways to travel etc…. http://www.ecofriendlykids.co.uk/
Environmental friendly activites both at home and at school for kids…. http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/go-green.html
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