1 Jun. 2022
Paperback / softback
What an absolutely delightful story the picture book, Slowly! Slowly! by Aussie author T.M. Clark, and illustrated by Helene Magisson, is! The author's first foray into children's fiction and to my mind, it's a hit! I know my grandchildren will love it, especially my twenty-month-old grandson.
I remember the saying 'softly softly, catchee monkey' from when I was a child, and this story is adapted from that, which is a proverb quoted by Lord Baden-Powell of the Boy Scouts, many years ago. It's originally South African (hence the monkeys and hyenas). Little Bongani wanted to go to school like his cousins, but he was too small. This is the story of how he passed his days, helping his father and grandfather with the crops.
If you have young children or grandchildren, Slowly! Slowly! is perfect for them. Highly recommended.
Slowly, slowly, you catch a monkey ...
Bongani wants to go to school, but he's not quite old enough just yet. To help distract him from being sad over not being able to go to school, Bongani's grandfather tells him to catch a monkey. Bongani tries a few different ways, but when he finally catches a monkey, he learns not only that he should have patience, but that the end result of finally catching a monkey is not what he thought it was.
Slowly! Slowly! is an adapted South African story, bringing a beautiful glimpse of African culture and learning, with similarities and differences that will prompt children to think about diversity, as well as encourage patience amongst them and to try new way of approaching goals to achieve them. It also prompts readers to reflect on the relationship between humans and animals. Rather than being down when one must be patient, one must try being productive elsewhere!
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