CM . . .
. Volume XII Number 18 . . . .May 12, 2006
Think Where’s Waldo?, multiply by seven and then add geography, and you have Up, Up and Away. The premise of the book is that six students, three boys and three girls, have won a geography competition, and their prize is a hot air balloon trip around the world. Accompanied by their teachers, Mrs. Green and Mr. Smith, the multiracial students, Sam, Dean, Kate, Justin, Lino, and Yoko visit a dozen countries beginning in Bolivia and concluding in Australia, with stops in between in the United States, Canada, England, Denmark, Italy, France, Egypt, China, Thailand, and India.
The reader’s/viewer’s challenge “is to find all six kids and the missing teacher in each destination.” As well, each country’s flag is also to be found. The individual countries are each treated via a double page spread filled with cartoon-like illustrations containing much colour, a great deal of detail, plus lots and lots of people engaged in numerous activities. A small box of text (See excerpt above) indicates the illustration’s general location.
Children who actually accept the search challenge will be occupied for some good length of time. Those with shorter attention spans can turn to the last three pages which provide the visual solutions. The pair of facing pages just prior to the “Solutions” section repeats, in greatly reduced format, the dozen country spreads and adds a brief paragraph of information. For example:
A fun addition to a school or public library’s collection, Up, Up and Away would also be a practical purchase by parents going on a family holiday involving lots of driving time and children.
Dave Jenkinson teaches courses in children’s and adolescent literature in the Faculty of Education, the University of Manitoba.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.