Sunday, December 6, 2009

REVIEW: All the World

Scanlon, L.G.  (2009).  All the World.  New York:  Beach Lane Books.


30-Second Summary:  This poem by Liz Garton Scanlon shows some of the places and people that make up the world.

I do like the poem-- particularly the stanza "Spreading shadows, setting sun / Crickets, curtains, day is done / A fire takes away the chill."  But having said that, the rhythm of the poem didn't get stuck in my head the way some of my favorite poetry picturebooks have.  Ya know?

Just last year, illustrator Marla Frazee won a Caldecott honor for A Couple of Boys Have the Best Week Ever.  The penciled illustrations are definitely within the same style as Best Week Ever, but All the World lacks the humor and the disagreement between the text and illustrations that were present in Best Week Ever, which--in my opinion--was what made that book so deserving of Caldecott attention.  All the World does, however, still include a lot of beautiful landscapes with excellent use of color.  I personally am a fan of this purple-grayish sunset:

Behold, The power of the pencil sketch!

Damn, why can't I draw like that again?  And more importantly, is anyone willing to teach me?


This is a good book to help toddlers and wee-little ones understand the larger world.  (The illustrations quite literally begin close up, and then expand out to show the wider scope of various locations)  Since images of families at a beach, a community garden, a house, a restaurant and a park, a teacher could discuss activities to do at each of those locations or could use this book to introduce a trip to one of those locations.

With older students, a teacher could focus on the environmental implications, since characters in the picturebook are shown planting trees and vegetable gardens.  The book could also be incorporated in to a lesson on the weather since a few the illustrations depict intense wind and rain.

Since the book approximately follows a day, ending with night, All the World could also be used as a bedtime story, encouraging a child and parent to think about all that they did in a day.  I particularly like the thought of a child and parent watching a sunset together.

Quotes of Note:

"All the world's a garden bed"

"All the world is old and new"

"Nest, bird, feather, fly
All the world has got its sky"

Tasty Rating:

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