Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Finding Wild

Halpin, Abigail (Illustrator)
Penguin Random House 2016. 24 pages
First published: 2016
ISBN: 9781101932810 (hardcover)
9781101932834 (e-book)
Original language: English
Book type: Picture Book

Text Elements:

figurative language

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:

“What is wild?” wonders the narrator in this poetic picture book. “And where can you find it?” Determined to find out, a boy and a girl wind their way through urban and natural landscapes, studying flora, multifaceted and magnificent, in unexpected places. Wilderness lovers and wordsmiths alike will treasure this colourful tribute to Mother Nature.

Sometimes, Wild embodies qualities of innocence: “Wild is tiny and fragile and sweet-baby new. It pushes through cracks and crannies and steals back forgotten places.” Elsewhere, it reveals an aggressive side. Intimidated by a tree entwined with serpents: “Wild creeps and crawls and slithers. It leaps and pounces and shows its teeth.” Either way, the text begs to be read aloud, lush with alliterations.

Vibrant watercolour and colour-pencil illustrations render spectacular scenes supportive of the rich imagery of the words. All the senses are solicited as the boy and girl hike past a waterfront, a cloud of white swirling across the spread like an invitation: “Wild is full of smells—fresh mint, ancient cave, sun-baked desert, sharp pine, salt sea. Every scent begging you to drink it in.”

In the city, the children really have to hunt for Wild. “You look and look, and all you can see are streets and cars and buildings so high, they hide the sky.” But a surprise ending delights the eyes with scenes from a secret garden, tucked behind gates, like a little piece of paradise.

  •  

    Based on the book cover, discuss what you think the story will be about.

  •  

    Descriptive words depict the wild (“Wild creeps and crawls and slithers.”) Make a T-chart to highlight these descriptors and infer what creature they are describing. Compare your ideas with those of your peers.

  •  

    What is the author's big idea? Discuss what the author wants us to learn, remember and do.

  •  

    Visit a natural space (e.g. a forest, river or botanical garden) and describe the experience using your five senses. Record what you can smell, hear, see, touch and taste. Write your own version of Finding Wild that features your observations.

  •  

    Based on the book cover, what do you think the story will be about? What does wild mean?  Write your own definition in your reader-writer’s notebook.

  •  

    Go for a picture walk and discuss the settings, characters, activities, emotions and artwork.

  •  

    As the book is read aloud, notice how the author uses a wide variety of words. Discuss how these words (such as “Wild creeps and crawls and slithers”) can produce images of the wild in your mind. Create a mind map to sort the words according to the five senses.

  •  

    Review and add to your definition of wild. Where in your area would you go to find this wild? Use your notebook to write about it, using some of the interesting word ideas you found in this book.

  • To cooperate with others
  • To exercise critical judgment
  • To use creativity
  • Environmental Awareness and Consumer Rights and Responsibilities
  • Science and Technology