The shark with the glinting, pointy teeth saw Turtle.
The octopus with the dangly, stretchy tentacles saw Turtle.
As Turtle makes her way across the sea, the reader is asked ‘Who saw Turtle?’ giving an element of interaction to this delightful tale of a turtle travelling to lay her eggs. The illustrations, too, are interactive, encouraging both prediction and a close examination to see previous animals repeated.
Who Saw Turtle is beautiful picture book offering from Ros Moriarity, with indigenous artwork from the Balarinji studio. Together with The Rainbow, it offers both simple text and rich visuals, perfect for very young students and second language learners.
An important inclusion in both books is a back of book translation of the text into the Yanyuwa language, spoken by families in Borroloola, in the Northern Territory. Such use of traditional language is vital not just for the speakers of that language, but for promoting Australia-wide awareness of the existence and importance of the many languages of our first peoples.
In paperback format, this pair will be enjoyed for its simple, engaging text and rich, bright illustrations.
Who Saw Turtle? ISBN 9781760297800
The Rainbow, ISBN 9781760297794
both by Ros Moriarty, illustrated by Balarinji
Allen & Unwin, 2018
Look at me! I’m quite divine,
a dancer of the sea.
I swim and glide and slip and hide
and grip my food with glee.
With the ability to colour-change, adapt and hide,the squid of this title poem is anything but silly. And, while there is plenty of fun and joy in this lively collection of poems, there is lots of evidence too of the wonders of the animal world, particularly those that live under and around the water.
From little jellyfish:
We come in different sizes
and people call us ‘jellies’
We have no bones, nor heart nor brain –
not even jelly bellies!
to the huge whale:
I swim high and low
and wherever I go
my water spout makes
such a wonderful show
Silly Squid! is a wonderful exploration of the diversity of the ocean, celebrated in playful rhymes. Each animal is given a double page spread including a poem and a realistic, yet still intimate acrylic illustration. The eyes of the animals look straight at readers, inviting them to get to know their subjects. Each page is finished off with brief facts about the animal in question. These facts, while useful, are on the edges of the page so as to not give them more emphasis than the poetry or art.
Readers may choose to read the book from cover to cover, or to read one poem at a time, dipping in and out of the book.
From the creators of Silly Galah, Silly Squid! is a wonderful poetry offering for younger readers.
Silly Squid!, by Janeen Brian & Cheryll Johns
Omnibus Books, 2015
Available from good bookstores and online.
Fishing in tidepools is fun, but watch out – if you take a little fish home for a pet, you may get more than you bargained for.
A Fisherman’s Tale, by Keith Faulkner and Jonathon Lambert, is a delightful lift the flap book which kids will love and parents enjoy reading.
The story is a little reminiscent of another old favourite, Seuss’s The Boy Who Fed His Fish Too Much, but this does not detract from the book. Kids love lifting and unfolding flaps and pages as they see the fish grow bigger and bigger and bigger, and the final flap with its satisfying ending.
A Fisherman’s Tale, published by Australian publisher, Koala Books is suitable for one to six year olds.
A Fisherman’s Tale, by Keith Faulkner and Jonathan Lambert
Published by Koala Books, Sydney, 1994