Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Environmental Activism

Here are four picture books that are just right for comparing and contrasting. Pair these with the Global Climate Strike September 20-27 so that your students can write their own version of this story.

The Promise
by Nicola Davies
illustrated by Laura Carlin
Candlewick Press, 2017

The speaker, who lives in "a city that was mean and hard and ugly," snatches an old lady's bag one dark night. Before the old lady lets go of the bag, she makes the speaker promise they will "plant them."

The promise is kept and the city is transformed. Many transformed cities later, the speaker is mugged, another bag of seeds is stolen, and another promise is extracted.

Don't miss the endpapers on this one!

The Last Tree
by Ingrid Chabbert
illustrated by Guridi
English translation by Kids Can Press, 2017

A boy has heard stories from his father about grass and trees, but he lives in a city where neither exist. He and a friend discover the last tree...and then they find out that condominiums will be built where it is growing. They dig the tree up and replant it where it will be safe.

Another book with great endpapers.

The Digger and the Flower
by Joseph Kuefler
Balzer + Bray, 2018

Little Digger watches the big machines doing their big construction work. But when they threaten to destroy the last flower in the city, Little Digger takes action and saves the flower, which thrives and spreads.

The Green Giant
by Katie Cottle
review copy compliments of Pavilion Children's, 2019

A little girl is staying with her grandpa in the country. In the greenhouse next door, she meets the green giant, who has escaped from the grey city. When she has to leave, the giant gives the girl a handful of seeds, which she plants when she returns. The city is transformed. Perhaps the giant will return some day.


  1. Introduced to The Digger and the Flower by my grandson. I've requested the two others, will wait for The Green Giant's publishing date. Thanks for these picture book recommendations.

  2. Save the earth. And the universe.


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