With the children’s title Not Your Typical Book About The Environment, author Elin Kelsey has crafted a breezy yet densely informative volume that maintains a positive outlook throughout its 64 pages. In chapters covering the clothes we wear, the food we eat and the toys we play with, Kelsey reveals the many ways we interact with our planet and some of the innovative ideas people are employing to improve our world. Clayton Hanmer’s layouts and illustrations beautifully complement the text, making each page a vast repository of fun facts and surprising trivia.
So why is this not a typical book about the environment? Elin Kelsey shows that it’s possible to inform and educate children about taking care of their planet without scaring them or shaming previous generations. Reading Not Your Typical Book About The Environment is a joyful experience for both child and parent. The author demonstrates how exciting it is to learn all the ways we are connected to our world, to really understand the things we can do to make a healthier environment. The stewardship of our planet is a serious issue, rife with controversy, but children’s literature is not the place for controversy. Books for young children need to focus on our hopes for the future, rather than the mistakes of the past. This may not be a typical book about the environment, but that’s because all the other books are doing it wrong.
(Book published by Owlkids Publishing, Toronto, 2010. 64 pages.)
Sara Hart is a homeschooling mom of four and owner of Hart Home Daycare www.harthomedaycare.com, the first daycare in Ontario to be endorsed as Eco-Healthy by the Oregon Environmental Council..