This book includes various interpretations of the natural world provided by different cultures. The text urges the reader to “match their thoughts to your own,” encouraging kids to consider their own beliefs about these phenomena and how they might be similar to or different from these other cultures. The descriptions are very poetic and some are hard to grasp, but the book makes an interesting study in the philosophies different groups have had about religion and nature over time.
Feather Mountain by Elizabeth Olds. Published 1951. Caldecott Honor 1952. ISBN: 9789997490285
This is the story of how birds got their feathers. I am not crazy about these kind of origin stories anyway, and this one was a little too weird for me. Some things about it are neat - such as the organized way in which the birds decide who will be colorful, and who will be more dull - but other things - like the mountain itself - didn’t really work for me. I think my favorite part of the whole book is the last image which shows all the different types of birds. I loved identifying the birds in my neighborhood when I was a kid, and a chart like that would have thrilled me.
Lion by William Pene Du Bois. Published 1956. Caldecott Honor 1957. Puffin Books. ISBN: 9780140504170
This imaginative story tells of how an angel comes to create the animal we know as the lion. The story is clever and the illustrations are colorful and silly. Not many of these older picture books have struck me as very story-time friendly, but this one could almost work with an older group of kids, or with the aid of a flannel board. I really like this unique approach to the idea of creation, and I especially enjoyed that the angel wants the lion to say “peep” instead of “roar.”
See other Caldecott Challenge participants' blogs on the challenge page at LibLaura5. Follow my challenge progress here.