Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Bob the Artist

Deuchars, Marion (Author/Illustrator)
Laurence King Publishing 2016. 32 pages
First published: 2016
ISBN: 9781780677675 (hardcover)
Original language: English
Book type: Picture Book

Text Elements:

character

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
ESL Intensive & Enriched
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

In this minimalistic yet bold picture book, a bird named Bob overcomes his insecurities by recognizing his unique strengths. “What a beautiful day for a walk on my fine legs,” Bob innocently muses on the opening page. But then he gets teased.

Simple black ink drawings with brightly coloured accents pop against a plain white backdrop, while characters convey pithy opinions in a stylish, script-like font. Their short yet cutting remarks inspire empathy. “‘Eeeek! Look at those skinny legs,’ said Cat.” Anyone who’s ever been teased will cringe as Bob skulks in the background, his shoulders drooping as each character has a go. “‘Oooh! Look at that funny stick walk,’ said Owl.”

Having developed a complex, Bob stares into the mirror, fixated on his “skinny legs.” “‘I’ll exercise my legs bigger!’” he tells himself while working out at the gym. Bob tries just about everything to ’fix’ himself, but no food, exercise or fashion changes his basic shape.

True transformation only occurs the day Bob visits the art gallery. Inspired by the colourful worlds of Jackson Pollock and Henri Matisse, Bob discovers his true calling and begins to decorate his red beak in eye-catching patterns. His body image—and his peers’ perception of him—radically improves once he shifts his focus to his unique gifts. “‘What an elegant walk!’” Owl exclaims. Readers will notice: Bob’s legs haven’t changed a bit, but his new-found confidence makes him a star.

  •  Has anyone ever made fun of you? Discuss how it feels and what you can do about it.
  •  

    Bob was quite content until some birds made fun of his legs. Why and how do others' opinions affect how we feel about our looks? Is our opinion more important than the opinion of others? Discuss why we respond to teasing.

  •  

    People who tease are sometimes unaware of the pain they are causing. With a partner, write a script in which a child is being teased; find a creative solution. Act out your skit in front of your peers.

  •  

    On a safe site, find images of work done by great artists. Find one that speaks to you and let their style rub off on your writing, drawing or creations (T-shirt, sculpture, etc.).

  •  

    Discuss what you think are your best features. Note them in your reader-writer’s notebook.

  •  

    Has anyone ever made fun of you? Discuss how it feels and what you can do about it. People who tease are sometimes unaware of the pain they are causing. With a partner, discuss creative ways to work out a solution.

  •  

    Determine the artists behind the works of art in the gallery that Bob visits. What makes their styles unique?

  •  

    On a safe site, find images of work done by great artists. Find an image that speaks to you and create a beak for Bob in that style.

  • To construct his/her identity
  • To cooperate with others
  • To solve problems
  • To use creativity
  • Citizenship and Community Life
  • Health and Well-Being
  • Drama
  • Ethics and Religious Culture
  • Tilt Your Head, Rosie the Red (R. McCarney) (Character)