- Age Range: 3 - 7 years
- Grade Level: Preschool - 2
- Lexile Measure: 660L (What's this?)
- Hardcover: 32 pages
- Publisher: Candlewick; 1 edition (May 12, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0763642711
- ISBN-13: 978-0763642716
- Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 0.4 x 10.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,380,154 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A Child's Garden: A Story of Hope Hardcover – May 12, 2009
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In the ravaged rubble where he lives behind a heavily guarded barbed-wire fence, a boy finds a tiny green sprout. Nurturing the vine, he watches it grow into a vibrant oasis, until it is destroyed by soldiers from the other side. Then, in spring, green shoots reappear. Together, the boy and a girl on the other side of the fence cultivate the vines and create a glorious, shared garden. The overt symbolism carries through to the boy’s closing thoughts: “Let the soldiers return . . . Roots are deep, and seeds spread . . . One day the fence will disappear forever.” Foreman’s expertly shaded pencil-and-watercolor illustrations deepen the story’s heavy messages of war and peace, moving from grim, gray-toned scenes to a vibrantly colored, idealistic spread depicting a long trail of happy kids winding into flower-strewn hills. Children will likely need to discuss the disturbing images of wire, ruins, and armed men, but they’ll connect with the young characters’ powerful ability to transform their wasted landscape and envision a joyful, harmonious world. Grades K-3. --Gillian Engberg
It's absolutely perfect. Please trust me that it's a book you'll want to read, and want to read with your children. It matters. * thebookbag.co.uk * --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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What I love about Foreman's new picturebook is that it echoes conflict zones around the world. The little boy who begins the story in a dark, rubble-strewn hovel could be living in regions of eastern Europe now--or perhaps back during World War II. He could be living in the Middle East or in a Latin American conflict zone. It's a startlingly beautiful fable that could be set many places around the world.
The whole point in exploring the pages of "A Child's Garden" is to see the black-white-and-gray hopelessness give way to the brilliant colors of vines, flowers, friends and eventually songbirds, too!
As is the case with most Candlewick books, I think Foreman's new story is just masquerading as a children's book. I'd buy it for yourself, for good friends, for any children you know. Read it with anyone who cares about peace and needs a few colorful rays of hope in this ominous springtime of turbulent change.
This inspiring book, which follows in the tradition of Michael Foreman's earlier Mia's Story, provides a clear lesson about hope in the face of scarcity and conflict. Both these books are top-notch choices for teaching children about the insidiousness of extreme poverty and the importance of thinking about solutions for a way out.