At Raring2go! we love to support family reading initiatives - anything that encourages children to put down the screen and pick up a book (comics and audio books count too) is a massive plus.
We have a Facebook group called Raring2Read! and is open to anyone and everyone who loves to read. We’d love to hear your recommendations for family-friendly reading. Let us all know which books you and your children enjoy, or feel free to share tips on how you’re supporting your children to read each day. You can find us here.
This quarter we have a review from one of our members, Mary, who covers her review of 'The Biggest Thig of All' in a very open & honest way...
"I read this book to the children, it was about relationship of a child and her family, mainly focusing on the relationship with her grand parents.
The story outlined how to be helpful and loving to your elders and also explained in a way the child could understand the cycle of life, where things start and how everything is a part of something bigger and their purpose in the world. It stretched the imagination of the children, trying to think of all the things they could think of that become part of bigger things .
Half way through book, Grandma passes away, which was a shock and sad, as other than Grandma becoming tired there was no warning signs to the children what was going to happen. The book has a good story to make children aware of losses they will face in life however I felt there could of been more signs of what was coming. It illustrated well the sadness, anger and loss they all felt and how they helped each other through it...
It was definitely a story that made the children think for themselves and question things, and gave the opportunity to learn about cycles of life and living things eg: butterfly part of swarm, birds a flock .
A very colourful and engaging book would recommend.
Mary Gannon (child-minder)
Thank you Mary, a great review!
If you would like to become a member of our Raring2Read group, just click here!
The Biggest Thing Of All, written by Kathryn Thurman and illustrated by Romina Galotta
A beautiful and sensitive picture book that’s been written for young children to explore the concepts of love, grief and finding hope after loss.
Meet Lily, who loves helping her Grandma and Grandpa grow flowers in their garden. Grandpa uses the garden to teach Lily that everything is part of something bigger – a petal is part of a rose, an ant is part of a colony, a star is part of the universe.
When Lily’s beloved grandma unexpectedly dies, Lily is able to use this idea and come to terms with her grief. She learns that every person is part of a bigger family, and that even when someone has died, the love you shared with them lives on.
In this easy-to-follow story, Kathryn Thurman has created characters who young readers will certainly relate to, with Romina Galotta's watercolour-style illustrations a charming accompaniment to Lily's journey. Loss and grief aren't easy topics to discuss with small children, but a sensitive story such as The Biggest Thing of All is a gentle way to introduce these concepts and explore the issues around grief and how we deal with it.
“While the death of Lily’s Grandma is incredibly sad, this book shows that grief can be a unifying force within a family and that life can still be celebrated after it is gone,” explains consultant clinical psychologist Lauren Callaghan, who co-founded Upside Down Publishing. “Young readers will identify with Lily and her sadness and will discover a safe way to understand and process grief.” Whilst the central core of the book is about death, it’s infused throughout with hope, love and security, showing children that love really is the biggest thing of all.