Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

The Forever Flowers

Danowski, Sonja (Illustrator)
Creative Editions 2014. 32 pages
First published: 2014
ISBN: 9781568462738 (hardcover)
Original language: English
Book type: Picture Book

Text Elements:

figurative language, setting

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:

Summer has come to an abrupt end and a young “rose cheeked grouse” doesn’t want to leave her favourite flowers behind. When the older grouse announces it is time to migrate, she fashions a packet to carry away seeds and petals. Her fellow birds encourage her to leave the flowers behind, but she can’t. The burden of holding on proves too much for her and she falls into the icy river below, where a cocker spaniel rescues her. She winters in a cottage by a frozen lake with her adopted companions – a young woman and her dog. The woman plants the flower seeds in her greenhouse and the grouse measures time by their growth. When spring finally comes, and the birds are reunited, the young grouse says goodbye to her new friends. This time, she knows how to let go.

Packed poetic language requires careful reading. Text is dense with simile and drips with lyricism: “Like three plump clouds, the grouses soared into a sky so gray the very air looked to be migrating to a land where colours yet bloomed.”

Sensitive illustrations in gorgeous detail are true-to-life portraits that retain a timeless, romantic quality. Antique sepia hues allow occasional reds and greens to glow on the page.

A gentle tale of acceptance and learning to let go.

  •  Read and discuss the epigraph. What do you think it means? After reading, reflect on its importance to the story.
  •  

    Look for details that are repeated in the images. What significance do they have? How do the illustrations, especially the wordless double-page spreads, help you understand the story?

  •  

    What are the big ideas about friendship and patience in this story? As a group, use a graphic organizer to make connections between the big ideas and the symbols and metaphors from the natural world.

  •  Imagine it is a year after the story ends. Write a letter from one of the characters, reflecting on the events of the story and what has transpired since.
  •  

    Do a picture walk and observe the setting and characters. Discuss the way colour is used in the illustrations.

  •  

    Listen to the text read aloud. How do the pictures help you understand the text? Why do you think the text may be difficult to understand?

  •  

    Make a list of unfamiliar vocabulary. Discuss the words with partners to determine their meanings from the context. Confirm with a dictionary.

  •  

    In small groups, discuss the underlying message of this book. Can you think of a similar situation in your life?

  • To construct his/her identity
  • To solve problems
  • To use information
  • Health and Well-Being