Kajikawa, Kimiko. 2009. TSUNAMI. Ill. by Ed Young. New York: Philomel. ISBN 9780399250064 [Suggested Grade Levels 1- 3]
“Something does not feel right.” This chilling statement is uttered by the oldest, wisest villager, Ojiisan. He lives high above the village overlooking the sea. After the rumblings of the earth, he noticed that the sea was running away from the land! The villagers do not realize the danger that they are in because they are busy celebrating the rice harvest. Ojiisan’s efforts to warn the villagers fail. In order to save everyone, he knows what he must do--burn his rice fields. TSUNAMI is a touching tale of personal sacrifice in the face of danger and of the gratitude of the villagers for Ojiisan’s selfless act.
Caldecott winner Ed Young’s illustrations are an interesting combination of gouache, pastel, and collage. The collage effect gives texture and movement to the illustrations. This movement is evident as the tsunami strikes; the artwork conveys the utter destruction of the village.
Create a tsunami wave in a bottle to demonstrate how an ocean wave is formed and grows larger. Visit the NOAA (National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration) website: www.tsunami.noaa.gov/kids.html Watch the video “Tsumanis: Know What to Do” on the Internet.
Other books on the subject of tsunamis:
Fredericks, Anthony D. THE TSUNAMI QUILT: GRANDFATHER’S STORY. ISBN 9781585363131
Osborne, Mary Pope and Natalie Pope Boyce. MAGIC TREE HOUSE RESEARCH GUIDE #15: TSUNAMIS AND OTHER NATURAL DISASTERS: A NONFICTION COMPANION TO HIGH TIDE IN HAWAII. ISBN 9780375832215
By Jane Jergensen