[OZTL_NET] CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN: The Twelve Underwater Days of Christmas

Barbara Braxton barbara.288 at bigpond.com
Wed Dec 14 09:23:00 AEDT 2016

The Twelve Underwater Days of Christmas

Kim Michelle Toft

stmas-%28Hardcover-%252b-Poster%29-.html> Silkim Books, 2007

hbk 9780975839041

pbk 9780975839034


Take the traditional Christmas song, add the most magnificent creatures of
the world's oceans, include important information about those creatures and
immerse the whole in the beautiful painted silk artworks of Kim Michelle
Toft and you have, quite simply, my most favourite Christmas book ever!

Toft has used the words of The Twelve Days of Christmas not only to
introduce readers to the dwellers of the deep, but has also built on the
traditional concept of gift-giving at this time to emphasise what a precious
present these creatures  are - one that we may not enjoy for much longer if
we don't start to value it now.

"All of the magnificent creatures in this book rely on the ocean for their
survival and many were once found in abundance.  This is no longer true.
Modern technology, huge increases in the world's population and lack of
management have resulted in some serious problems.  These problems include
over fishing, pollution from poorly treated sewage, effluents from oil
spoils, litter and global warming which is contributing to the destruction
of coral reefs all around the world.  It is up to nations,  governments and
the will of the people to work together to help conserve these incredible
gifts from nature."

Thus, as well as being a stunning visual feast, there is a serious message
that can be emphasised, enabling this book to sit well within any
sustainability curriculum.  Even though students might not be able to
replicate the artworks which are hand drawn with gold gutta on white silk
then painted with brushes using silk dyes, the concept itself might inspire
a class project of those things in the local region that might disappear if
no action to preserve them is taken.

At the end of the book is an amazing poster containing all the creatures
mentioned, and some versions have a
stmas-CD.html> CD of Toft's lyrics sung by Lisa Hunt.  What a wonderful song
to add to the Christmas repertoire.

Toft always writes and illustrates about her passion - the preservation of
ocean life - and you can see all her publications
<http://www.kimtoft.com.au/books/categories/Books/>  here and as a bonus,
here's a full unit of work for
.php> The World that We Want.

She is one who must have a place on your library's shelves - school or home.


Barbara Braxton

Teacher Librarian

M.Ed.(TL), M.App.Sci.(TL), M.I.S. (Children's Services) 

Dromkeen Librarian's Award 2003



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