CM . . .
. Volume XXII Number . . . .September 25, 2015
A Day in Canada is a vibrant picture book that tours the reader through Canada by using a “day in the life” style. The book opens on a small beaver stretching in bed first thing in the morning and asking, “What will you do today?” The story then shows all sorts of different Canadian animal characters, such as polar bears, moose, and raccoons, at various Canadian locales throughout the day as the story moves from East to West, then to the North before bedtime. The reader stops in places like the Halifax Farmers’ Market, an old fort in Quebec City, and Lake Louise. A Day in Canada provides a beautiful picture of a multicultural Canada.
There are a number of interesting features to this book. Each page has an analog clock in the bottom left corner of the page. This shows children the time on the clock that corresponds to the time listed in the text and is a clever teaching tool. The book also has a map of all the Canadian provinces and territories on both the front and back inside covers. It is a nice tie-in to the trek across Canada that the story takes. An opportunity is lost though in not pointing out on the map where each of the stops in the book is. Some of the locations mentioned in the story, such as Miramichi or the Athabasca Sand Dunes, may not be familiar to all readers, and it would be another teaching opportunity to point out these locations on the map. The story also uses an Inuktitut word, sinittiarniaqputit, and this word is defined (along with a pronunciation guide) on the publication information page at the end of the book so that readers are not left feeling lost on its use or the context for including it. The last page of the story shows seven vignettes taken from the pages of the book and asks the reader what time they like to do each activity. This page at the end of the book prompts adults and children to discuss the different activities of the story as well as times of day.
The illustrations in this book were created in Adobe Illustrator. They are drawings and are not overly realistic, but certainly it is clear what animal each character is, and all locations depicted in the story are evocative of the real thing. The illustrations are also incredibly colourful and bright, creating a rich and lively environment for the reader.
A Day in Canada portrays this wonderful country as an exciting, interesting, and beautiful place to explore. As well, the book provides some tools for teaching children about Canada, telling time, and provides some talking points at the end of the story. This would be a good purchase for school and public libraries, especially those interested in Canadian content. Although not explicitly listed as a series, A Day in Canada appears to be a companion book to, and is in a similar style to, other books Per-Henrik Gürth has published, including Canada in Colours and ABC of Toronto
Carla Epp is a hospital librarian with the University of Manitoba.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any
other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.