The morning of the 15th (NZ time) Vivian and I headed for Pt Chevalier School for Vivian to read to one hundred 6year olds. After a beautiful assembly where children sang the National Anthem in both Maori and English, and also in sign language, awards were given out for achievements and acts of kindness and creativity. Children here are encouraged to be inclusive in all things. Vivian was introduced and welcomed by the Headmaster. Then in the library the children sang “Happy Birthday Four Otters” with Vivian and the reading got underway. I was impressed to see Vivian in action unruffled by such a large group. Often Vivian stopped to answer questions from the children and it was so lovely to see how enthusiastic and attentive they were. The reading was followed by more questions and a spelling craft on the whiteboard. Afterwards Vivian and I were invited for a lovely morning tea in the staff room put on by the teachers. It was a very rewarding session and I literally had to drag Vivian away. She would have stayed all day given the chance.
FOUR OTTERS TOBOGGAN –
Written by: Vivian Kirkfield
Illustrated by: Mirka Hokkanen
Published by: Pomegranate , March 2019
Ages: 4 – 8 years
Theme: counting, nature, animals
Opening Lines: Water waits. Dawn breaks in a chorus of bird song. ONE willow flycatcher whistles as the night slips silently away.
Synopsis. The animals find shelter, safety and fun in the river and as dawn turns to dusk they sing, leap, toboggan, flit, flutter and hunt, riding out a storm, bask in the sun’s rays and tuck under the silver moon. A counting book filled with modern wood engraving illustrations, celebrates the wild beauty and the natural environment around us.
Why I like this: As the opening lines demonstrate the beautiful lyrical language captures the mood. When I first read the early drafts of this story I fell in love with the way the words whisked you away in a dream-like state to a place of stillness yet busy, silent yet noisy, and the world as we know it miles away. Almost poetry-like Vivian paints vivid imagery from dawn to dusk of the animals at play. Mirka’s wood engraving is perfect for this book and gives the illustrations texture. I also love the glossary about the animals and questions that ask the children to study the illustrations.
It’s also lovely to see a teacher’s aid and activity book available.
Free download of the colouring/activity book….. https://viviankirkfield.files.wordpress.com/2019/03/otter-coloring-book.pdf
Author’s website: https://viviankirkfield.com/my-book/
HAPPY BIRTHDAY – FOUR OTTERS TOBOGGANING.
I’m always happy reviewing Picture Books that come my way and share them with you. If you would like to see more please pop over to Susanna Leonard Hills Blog where there are hundreds of books reviewed by other like minded authors and writers. Thank you for popping in and I hope you return again soon.
A million thanks, Diane…for arranging the event, for taking the photos, for all of your work putting the video together…and for all-around awesomeness! Wonderful post!!!
You are very welcome sweet friend. I loved seeing you in action. It was a fun day.
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Oh my gosh! I love the story you opened with of Vivian’s classroom visit, and of the children singing Happy Birthday Four Otters! Sooo heartwarming. I can’t wait to add Vivian’s book to my collection of favorites. This lyrical counting book looks like pure magic!
Hi Leslie it is pure magic. It was a fun day, Vivian was in her element.
Looks like a fun event. Like Vivian, I enjoy visiting schools as well. I also could stay all day and often do. LOVE the cake! Glad you are both OK after hearing the terrible news this morning. Sending love and hugs. xo
Hi Darlene, We did have a great day. Yes it was sad to hear of what happened and even greater shock having just flown back into Auckland from Christchurch the day before. Christchurch is a lovely city recovering from the turmoils of the earthquakes and it certainly did not need this. We were unaware of what had happened until that evening when we sat to watch the news. I immediately told Vivian to get on the internet and let her family and friends know she was okay.
So, so beautiful! And so exciting to share this book with all those excited children!
Thank you Jilanne. So glad you enjoyed the video. More to come.
Thank you for Dianne in allowing us to join Vivian’s masterful reading. It was almost as good as being there. Great review too. Between the two of us, I think we covered all the fun, extra activities these talented ladies created for their book. 🙂
Hi Maria, Thanks for your lovely comment. Yes I think we have covered it. lol. Having loads, and loads of fun with Vivian. More video and pics to come.
It was fun joining Vivian on her school visit. FOUR OTTERS TOBOGGAN sounds like a very lyrical read. I like the idea of illustrations that are made with wood engraving! How beautiful! Look forward to reading the book.
Tell Vivian, I received a “thank you e-mail” from my library for recommending they purchase THANK YOU SARAH. They ordered it for two major libraries.
Thank you so much, Patricia…I so appreciate your enthusiasm for OTTERS…and THANK YOU for recommending your library purchase Sweet Dreams, Sarah…that is so cool!
Hi Pat. That is awesome! Thanks for the lovely comment. Watch for more to come.
Nice to hear a bit of her presentation. Did you make this cake, Diane?