Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Use Your Imagination

O'Byrne, Nicola (Author/Illustrator)
Candlewick Press 2015. 28 pages
First published: 2014
ISBN: 9780763680015 (hardcover)
Original language: English
Book type: Picture Book

Text Elements:

character, structures and features

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:

“One day, Rabbit was feeling bored,” begins this clever spin on Little Red Riding Hood. “‘I wish something would happen,’ he said.” Rabbit’s wish is (sort of) granted when along comes Wolf, a self-proclaimed librarian with an appetite for fairy tales—the kind you can “really sink your teeth into.”

“‘You don’t look like a librarian,’ said Rabbit. “‘What big ears you have!’ ‘All the better for listening to stories with, my dear,’ said Wolf.” Despite his suspicions, Rabbit is eager to play along. “You need to use your imagination!” Wolf tells Rabbit. “That means using words and pictures to create a story.”

Following Wolf’s lead, Rabbit unwittingly finds himself playing the hero in this nutty narrative, while Wolf conveniently casts himself as “the bad guy.” A zany chase through a “tree-y” forest ensues, where tree trunks appear as swirling candy sticks. Watercolour and ink illustrations capture the characters’ comical expressions while fonts in all shapes and sizes add an extra layer of quirkiness. Even the book’s format is original, with its kooky climax presented in a fold-out spread, while a cut-out on the back cover serves as one last window into the imagination.

By the end of the book, Rabbit—like the reader—is anything but bored. Harnessing his imagination, he cleverly spins the story in his own favour. “I’m the hero, after all,” he reminds himself, reminding readers that creativity is indeed empowering.

  •  Look at the cover and predict what will happen in the story.
  •  

    Go for a picture walk. Stop at the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 page and discuss what you imagine the story will be about.

  •  

    Explore the author’s crafting technique of using different fonts. Discuss what the author intended with those choices.

  •  

    Read a version of the original Little Red Riding Hood. What key elements have been used to create this adapted version of the story?

  •  

    Practise reading the story aloud with a partner. Respect the author’s choices regarding emphasis, but allow yourself to be creative in terms of the tone and inflection you use.

  •  

    Write an alternative ending. Compare your ideas with your classmates.

  •  

    Discuss what your imagination is and how it helps you. Note the ideas on a class list.

  •  

    Go for a picture walk. What do you notice in terms of characters and expressions? Why did the author use a variety of fonts?

  •  

    Choral read the story with lots of expression. One group can read the rabbit’s part and another group, the part of the wolf.

  •  

    On which fairy tale is this story based? With a partner, choose another fairy tale and imagine a different ending.

  • To use creativity
  • To use information
  • Visual Arts