BOOK BLOG: Nicola Davies

Every Child A Song: Poignant and a wonderful readaloud for kids of all ages! 

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“Using the metaphor of song, the book opens with the arrival of a newborn and its unique ‘song’, then pans out to explore all the essential things that every song needs to thrive – love, protection, a home, a name, the chance to explore and learn.”

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Every Child A Song is a wonderful picture book introducing children to some of the fundamental rights we have as humans: love, protection, safety, a home, a name and all of those other wonderful things. The story is told as we all have a song to sing and it is our right as a human to be proud of our song and to sing our song aloud.

As you go through the story, you see the child growing older and getting the chance to do some wonderful things: learn, explore, create. But you also see some of the not so wonderful things in life that other children have to go through: child labour, exploitation and war. This book explores those topics with sensitivity and with care, which I think is important. Children need to know these things happen to children who are of the same age as them, but don’t need it thrust in their faces aggressively. They need it like this: sensitively done and beautifully crafted. 

In the end, it is of course down to all of us to make sure that we work together. We sing our songs together. We show pride in our songs and we allow others to sing their songs. It takes a world to make the world turn, so it’s our job to make it happen for others. 

The illustrations are wonderfully done. I love the differences between the colours when we are talking about kindness and happiness and then the colours used when some of the more serious themes are addressed. It’s a visually gorgeous book to look at and my hat goes off to the illustrator Marc Martin – he’s done a superb job turning the words of this story into an incredible visual story. 

I think this book would make a PERFECT readaloud for all children, but I think it would have a particular impact with slightly older children who could have discussions around the topics and themes addressed in the book.  Whether in a PSHE lesson, an assembly or just as a story time, this book would be perfect for reading with KS2 and even KS3 children.

I know that I will certainly be taking my copy in to school to put on my shelf for with my Year 6 children. I’m always looking for interesting and beautiful picture books that can be a platform for some really hard hitting conversations. 

A massive thank you to the publishers Wren and Rook for sending me a review copy of this book. I just adore it and I know that it is going to have a place in my classroom for a long time to come! 

What are your favourite picture books to deal with sensitive themes and topics?
Have you read Every Child A Song?
How do you share stories with your children?

Talk to me in the comments. I’d love to know your thoughts and recommendations (not that I need any more picture books… or books in general ha!)

S x 

 

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