Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Abuela

Dorros, Arthur (Author)
Kleven, Elisa (Illustrator)
Penguin Random House 1997. 40 pages
First published: 1991
ISBN: 9780140562255 (paperback)
9780525447504 (hardcover)
Original language: English
Book type: Picture Book

Text Elements:

character, point of view

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

Rosalba enjoys a special relationship with her abuela (grandmother). Abuela speaks mostly Spanish: “‘El parque es lindo,’ says Abuela. I know what she means. I think the park is beautiful too.”

The theme of immigration and the exchange of cultures are addressed as Abuela and Rosalba imagine flying out of the park, over the airport (Abuela arrived in the country by plane,) to the port (where a cousin works) and around the Statue of Liberty. They imagine flying to Uncle and Aunt’s neighbourhood store to drink limonadas. Spanish words and phrases can easily be understood in the context of the story, though there is also a glossary.

Spirited illustrations make this book a joy to behold. The paintings—using touches of collage here and there—are like bright, chaotic mosaics. Every setting offers a panoply of color and frenzy, begging to be examined for additional stories within. Each vivid picture is a spectacle on its own; together they build an impression of the city that bustles beyond belief—rich with people, places, activities—all for Rosalba and Abuela to enjoy.

As their kaleidoscopic journey of imagination comes to an end, Abuela suggests another adventure—this time on a paddle boat in the park lake. The message is clear: both imagination and real life make for wonderful adventures.

  •  

    Discuss what you like to do with your grandparents; where would you like to go with one of them?

  •  If you could fly, where would you go? Write about a place you would choose to fly to and describe what you might see there.
  •  

    In the story, the girl and her grandmother fly all over town. Draw and label a town that you imagine. Include all the things you would like to see in the town (pool, park, shops, etc.).

  •  

    Draw a picture and write about your grandparent/special auntie/other. What clothes and colours do they wear? As you describe them, think about what they like to do and how they behave.

  •  

    Discuss what you like to do with your grandparents; where would you like to go with one of them?

  •  Discuss the advantages of speaking two languages instead of only one. Can you speak another language? Do you know anyone who speaks another language?
  •  

    Draw a picture and write about your grandparent/special auntie/other. What clothes and colours do they wear? As you describe them, think about what they like to do and how they behave.

  •  If you could fly, where would you go? Write about a place you would choose to fly to and describe what you might see there.
  • To construct his/her identity
  • To cooperate with others
  • Citizenship and Community Life
  • Geography, History and Citizenship