Author: Vivien Bowers
Illustrations: Milan Pavlovic
Publisher: Tundra Books, a division of Random House
Ages: Children 7-10 years
Genre: Children's books/non-fiction/history
Release date: May 8, 2012
Source: A copy was provided by the publisher. This in no way influenced my opinion nor this review.
"Gran has decided that she is taking nine-year-old Alice and eight-year-old Cal on a road trip across Canada “before she’s old and creaky.” With a sparkling combination of poems, silly songs, tweets and blogs, the trio records the trip for readers everywhere to share. Starting in St. John’s Newfoundland, where they have a “find-it” list that includes a moose and an iceberg and going all the way to the Pacific Ocean, the gang in Hey Canada! offers a delightful way to learn about vast, varied, and surprising Canada.
Beginning in St. John's, Newfoundland, Gran and her two grandchildren, Cal and Alice, embark on a marvellous journey and adventure. Their goal: to travel across the country of Canada, Coast to Coast! The trip is sure to be a fun time for Cal and Alice, you, the readers, and, yes of course, for Gran too!
Site-seeing accompanied with facts about history and historical sites, even native wildlife, makes the country-wide trip fun and informative. Hey Canada doesn't come across as a text book, rather like a travel-log filled with kid friendly adventure.
Filled with photography, graphic illustrations, "find it", and factoids, Hey Canada has a lot going on. For example, here's a factoid Cal shared: "Why is PEI sand red? Because it's full of iron. When iron gets wet and rusts, it turns orangey-red." (p. 17)
Children can play the "find it" game as they read along. For example, for the province of Saskatchewan the items to find are: wheat field, bison, grain elevator and RCMP. Hey Canada is an interactive novelty that parents and children will enjoy spending hours reading together.
I would highly recommend that each school library has a couple copies, that Hey Canada becomes part of the curriculum in elementary schools, and that parents adopt this book for use during family vacations too! Hey Canada makes learning fun!
Meet the Author:
Vivien Bowers was born in Vancouver, Canada in 1951, the second of four children. She received a B.A. in English (honours) from the University of British Columbia followed by a teaching certificate, and was a grade 5 teacher for several years in Nelson, BC. Vivien has been a freelance writer for more than twenty-five years, writing elementary and secondary school materials, as well as non-fiction books and magazine articles for both adults and children. She has been invited to do presentations on her children's books in hundreds of schools and libraries across the country. Bowers has two sons, now grown up, and lives at the base of the mountains outside of Nelson, BC. She loves to escape into the wilderness to ski, hike or canoe.