Review Blog

Mar 07 2012

Bush bash! by Sally Morgan and Ambelin Kwaymullina

cover image

Little Hare, 2012. ISBN: 9781921714771.
Recommended for ages 5+. When dingo dashes by, looking very excited, the other animals become intrigued and question where he is headed. As numbats, flying frogs, bilbies, crows, wombats, gliders, sea snakes, magpies and lizards ask where he is going, he finally issues them with an invitation to follow him. The surprise ending is eventually revealed and we see why he has been so excited and in such a hurry.
With a simple repetitive style of text, the focus of the reader can easily be placed on the vibrantly coloured, stylised pictures. Patterning is used in the background and the bush is depicted in such a way as to make it interesting and exciting. Dingo leaves prints in the sand which can be easily followed by the animals and also by the reader. Although at first glance this would appear to be just a simple counting book which uses Australian birds and animals, it has another more important layer. The reader is also encouraged to look closely at the illustrations to find both aboriginal artifacts and introduced species.
In the classroom, this could provide scaffolding on which the students could write their own stories based on Australian animals. More importantly, it could also be used to discuss endangered and introduced species which impact on our environment.
Jo Schenkel

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