Karana made a beautiful nest
Then groomed his feathers to look his best.
When emu ladies came strolling by,
He started his dance to catch their eye.
One lovely lady with very long legs,
Sat on his nest and laid SIXTEEN EGGS
Karana the father emu makes a nest. He courts a female emu then sits on the eggs until they hatch. When they hatch he rears them, showing them the foods to eat, keeping them safe until they are big enough to survive on their own. When his chicks are independent, it’s time for Karana to make a new nest. Karanais told in simple rhyme with text in white set on coloured background with painted illustrations generally on single pages. Emu is inquisitive and engaging and his chicks delightful.
Karana tells the story of a father emu and his chicks. Text is simple and rhythmic with repetition, easy to listen to, easy to build on. Biographical information on the final page introduces Uncle Joe Kirk, a Wakka Wakka elder who is passionate about sharing traditional stories. The final page also offers information about the importance of the emu in Wakka Wakka culture. Karana is an engaging illustrated story for pre- and early-schoolers. It could also be used in a variety of ways with older children, connecting story with the land, and introducing science concepts. Recommended for pre- and early-schoolers.
Karana, Uncle Joe Kirk, with Greer Casey and Sandi Harrold, ill Sandi Harrold Scholastic Australia 2014 ISBN: 9781743623138
review by Claire Saxby, Children’s author and bookseller