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Leaping into Literature: Our Final Week

Our Leaping into Literature readings have become rather challenged as we juggle a number of major projects in our life, projects that distract our focus and energy elsewhere, in fact this post has languished for a few weeks in drafts, dusting off to share.

All three of the older children have been reading up a storm, however focusing on the picture books this week.


Jelly Bean (11)

Kelsey Green, Reading Queen – Claudia Mills

JB loved this book

Jack Jack (9 – Later Reader)

Treehouse Rescue: Peter Rabbit

The Raddish Robber: Peter Rabbit

leap lit dec 1Australian – War

Remembrance Day was on the 11th November and we read through a huge pile of war books. Well read and sobbed, it all seemed so sad and senseless. Certainly to the children, the books provoked some deep questions and ponderings about ‘why?’, how to explain to a seven year old ‘why’ when I struggle to understand myself.


Lone Pine – Susie Brown

This book totally captured the childrens interest. Three sons go to war in Gallipoli, they send home seeds from a pine tree, one son doesn’t survive. The seeds were planted in their home town and around Australia in remembrance. We had no idea of the background of the pine trees, so interesting.

Memorial – Gary Crew

A young boy talks to his family, his great grandfather, his grandfather and father who all fought in different wars. They discuss the war memorial and the young lad wants to fight to keep the memorial.f

Simpson and his Donkey – Mark Greenwood

Simpson and his donkey rescue many soldiers in Gallipoli. Popular.

Grandad Marches on Anzac Day – Catriona Hay

Grandad fought in World War 2, touches on the meaning of Anzac Day.

Along the Road to Gundagai – Jack O’Hagan

Did you know this folk song was about a young soldier singing of his memories of home? I didn’t.

The Red Poppy – David Hill

A young soldier finds himself in a trench with an enemy soldier in World War 1, a dog goes for help.

In Flander’s Fields – Norman Jorgensen

On Christmas day in WW1 a young soldier crosses no man’s land to rescue a red robin  caught on the barbed wire.

One Minute’s Silence – David Metzenthen

In a classroom, whilst observing ‘One Minute’s Silence’ on Remberance Day, Australian teens reflect the different scenes and feelings the soldiers on both sides would have felt.

Once a Shepherd – Glenda Millard

A young man never returns to his wife and baby fellow, but a fellow soldier returns his coat. So poignant, sobbed throughout.

The Soldier’s Gift – Tony Palmer

A young soldier leaves his dog with his motherless, lonely sister.  He sends home pine seeds and the young girl plants the seeds.

Night Without Darkness – Diane Stanely

Set on a birding island off Tasmania. A young man, friend’s with a young girl goes to war, sadly he doesn’t return.

My Mother’s Eyes – Mark Wilson

A young 16 year old boy lies about his age and is sent to Flanders, France. He doesn’t return.

Vietnam Diary – Mark Wilson

Two brother’s have opposing views of the war in Vietnam, one brother is sent to war where he dies.

Photographs in the Mud – Dianne Wolfer

Set on the Kokoda Trail, two enemy soldiers meet and fight, as they lay dying they discover they aren’t that different.

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Counting Chickens – Polly Alakija 3.5 Star

Simple counting text, set in a modern African village life


A Team Like No Other – Georgia Graham 4.5 Star

A young boy and his father head out for an afternoon hike with their husky team. A near disaster is averted.

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The Pirate Meet the Queen – Matt Faulkner 5 Star

Granuaile O’Malley an Irish female pirate sails the seas for years. Based on folk lore, fascinating.

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Trapped: A Whale’s Rescue – Robert Burleigh 5 Star

A massive humpback whale is trapped in a fisherman’s net. A team of people come to her rescue, dangerous, a true story.

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Yet More 4.5 Star

Windhover – Alan Brown

Three kestrels are born high in the school yard. A lonely bully takes one of the birds but a girl convinces him to return the bird, he is declared a hero.

4 Star

The Utterly Otterleys – Mairi Hedderwick

Otter dad declares it’s time to find a new home, he trys many homes before ending up back at the same home.

Edward and the Great Discovery – Rebecca McRitchie

Edward’s family are all archeolgists who have made great discoveries. Edward has discovered nothing, he does not realise that his egg is a phoenix egg.

3 Star

Tree – Danny Parker

A forest changes but then regrowth occurs.

Three Bears in a Boat – David Soman

Three bears set of on an adventure, rather sweet.

2.5 Star

Thunderstorm Dancing – Katrina Germein

An extended family is holidaying at the beach, a storm brews and breaks.

Up – Jim LaMarche

A young boy can levitate objects, he uses his skill to help a whale unbeach. Well written but odd.

Water Boy – David McPhail 

A small boy has the power to control water, another odd storyline.

2 Star

Winter’s Blanket – Phil Cummings

A story about the seasons, spring comes after winter.

Wait! Wait! – Hatsue Nakawaki

Text is about play, repetition.

1.5 Star

Whale – David Lucas

A whale wrecks a town, then fixes it.

Teacup – Rebecca Young 

A young boy sails off to see the world, a tree grows in his boat to shade him. He lands on an island  and later a girl arrives too. No resolution to the story, strange.


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