CM . . . . Volume XVIII Number 15 . . . . December 9, 2011
Mumaizu and the Hippos is one of a number of illustrated books that Kathy Knowles, a Winnipeger, has authored and illustrated via photographs for the children of Ghana. (For more information about the OSU Children’s Library Fund, visit the website identified above.) However, the book also has applications for Canadian children and classrooms. Children everywhere like to do things with their parents, including going to their parents’ places of work. Mumaizu’s father is a guide at the Wechiau Community Hippo Sanctuary, and, for the first time, he invites Mumaizu to visit the sanctuary. Mumaizu has never before seen a hippo, and he is understandably quite excited to undertake this trip, one which culminates in father and son in a boat on the Black Volta River where they do encounter a number of hippos.
With each pair of facing pages, Knowles’ full-colour photos occupy the left side page while the accompanying text appears on the other facing page. The book particularly lends itself to community studies in Early Years classrooms, and students, through listening to the text and by examining the details in the photos, can identify how their lives and that of Mumaizu are both alike and different.
Dave Jenkinson, CM’s editor, lives in hippo-less Winnipeg, MB.
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