This book was first copyrighted in 1984 and has been reprinted three times. Neekna and Chemai is the story of two young girls growing up in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia before the arrival of Europeans. Their story tells the reader about how their people lived following the cycle of nature. This book by acclaimed Okanagan writer Jeannette Armstrong explains the traditional culture of this First Nation from the Interior of British Columbia. This book is recommended for grades 2 to 6.
Nadia Sammurtok is an Inuit writer and educator originally from Rankin Inlet, Nunavut. In keeping with Nadia's passion to preserve traditional Inuit lifestyle and Inuktitut language for future generations, she has authored an Inuit story from the Kivalliq region of Nunavut. This tale of two less-than-cautious sister rabbits being swooped upon by greedy Owls out hunting for their next meal. With some quick thinking the rabbits outwit the Owls finally hiding in the Arctic willow.
Takannaaluk is a 32-page bilingual picture book written by Inuk Elder Herve Paniaq and illustrated by renowned Inuk artist Germaine Arnaktauyok published by Inhabit Media. In this Inuit creation story, storyteller and artist combine their remarkable talents to recount the origin of Arctic sea mammals and explains how the mother of these mammals is highly respected. Takannaaluk means the one down there is a term used in the High Arctic to refer to the mother of sea mammals, the most important being in Inuit worldview.
The Pencil is a unique original story based on the childhood experiences of Inuk author Susan Avingaq. Told in 36-page picture book format with engaging colour illustrations by Charlene Chua, this story will appeal to primary level students from all regions of Canada. In the story three Inuit children are at home in their iglu with their father while their midwife mother is away assisting at a birth in their community. The main character Susan retells how as a child she and her siblings would watch their mom write letters to friends and family with a special tool, a tiny pencil.
The Girl and the Wolf is a recent release from Theytus Books. In this children’s 2019 picture book a young girl is out in the woods picking berries. But the girl has forgotten mother’s instruction about going off by herself and soon the girl is lost. Suddenly a grey wolf appears and the girl is afraid. But this wolf is different from the European approach to wolves in fairy tales. This large wolf is kind and helpful as he assists the frightened child calm herself and draw upon her knowledge of the woods. The girl successfully finds her way home and recounts her encounter with the wolf.
Bear for Breakfast, Makwa kidji kijebà wìsiniyàn is the recent Robert Munsch picture book about a young boy who wants to have a unique breakfast. Instead of having a bowl of cereal or some delicious pancakes Donovan tells his mother he wants to eat bear for breakfast. Donovan’s grandfather explained that as a child he often ate bear for his breakfast. Mother explains that she had just shopped for groceries but if Donovan hurried he might find some bear meat for his morning meal. Donovan immediately sets out to locate bear. He meets locates several animals but there are no bears.
Zoe and the Fawn is a delightful 32-page children's picture book. The simple story revolves around a girl named Zoe and her father as they go outside to feed and water their horses and see a tiny fawn off in the distance. With the simple questions asked by Zoe about the location of the fawn's mother and father's gentle responses, the reader is taken on a magical adventure of the woods where there are birds and animals.
Awasis and the World-Famous Bannock is a charming picture book by the Swan River First Nation author Dallas Hunt. Added to the mix of this fun text are the colourful illustrations from Metis media artist and filmmaker Amanda Strong. The Cree author mixes key Cree vocabulary within this story about a young girl who is delivering her Kohkum’s (grandmother’s” bannock to a relative. But on her way Awasis allows the bread to fall into a stream. What should the little girl do? With the help of her animal friends the girl collects all the ingredients for making bannock.
The Boy Who Walked Backwards is a picture book published by the Manitoba First Nations Education Resource Centre and written by singer songwriter Ben Sures. This story recounts an actual historical event about a young Ojibwe boy from Serpent River, Ontario who uses a traditional game to fool nuns sent to apprehend this child after he failed to return to residential school after a school break. Leo Day attends residential school but finds that this harsh reality of everyday existence is not what he expected when he is sent there to learn.