Chicken Big by Keith Graves

‘Chicken Big’ is a delightful piece of nonsense.

Chicken Big hatches from the largest egg anyone in the henhouse has ever seen. It’s so big that they’re sure Chicken Big cannot possibly be a chicken. Chicken Little is sure Chicken Big must be an elephant. So poor young Chicken Big is banished from the hen house. But Chicken Little also thinks that the sky is falling, the sky is leaking and other calamities are imminent, so perhaps he’s not an authority on anything. But the other chickens listen. Each time, it’s Chicken Big who saves them from terrible fate. Eventually they decide that he must be a chicken after all and readmit him to the henhouse. Now everything will get back to normal…won’t it?

Chicken Big is a delightful piece of nonsense. Chicken Little is there, and scaremongering as per the falling sky, but he/she’s not alone. The other ‘normal’ sized chickens/hens are quite foolish and easily led, with only Chicken Big showing a modicum of sense. And he’s the youngest! There is plenty to giggle about, but it’s also a good way to introduce the notion of difference and belonging and sense and nonsense. There are lots of speech bubbles to add to the hilarity. The illustrations are full of colour and life, with all the chickens having very expressive faces. Recommended for pre and early primary children.

Chicken Big

Chicken Big, Keith Graves Scholastic Australia 2012 ISBN: 9781741699777

review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author