stories that can allow children an insight into how dreadful events like war impact on helpless individuals and helpless creatures alike. Another ‘Holocaust’ book, but one with a more joyful message, is Wild and Vivas’ Let the Celebrations Begin. Poole and Barrett’s Anne Frank provides an excellent introduction to discussions about intolerance and racial hatred as does The Harmonica by Johnston and Mazellan. Radunsky’s What Does Peace Feel Like could help children examine and explore all the different possibilities of meaning of the word ‘peace’, by inviting them to imagine what experiencing peace through the five senses would be like. The book begins and ends with translations of ‘peace’ into nearly 200 different languages. The central message is that all people have the creative power to

Carol Hurst, on her Children’s Literature website (www.carolhurst. com) recommends several books for getting children to realise the importance of perspective (Banyai’s Zoom), of how history is contextualised (Bunting’s Fly Away Home) and of how events do not happen in a vacuum (Macaulay’s Black and White; Graham’s Silver Buttons, for example). There are myriads of books dealing with the topic of colonisation, and I would begin with McKee’s The Conquerors, which is perfect for beginning to understand the complexity of issues such as cultural influence, coercion, and the colonisation of minds. Yolen and Shannon’s Encounter is an excellent resource for beginning to understand how cultures collide when Christopher Columbus arrives in The New World. Another book with this theme, and told in a partly allegorical way from the perspective of the colonised, is The Rabbits by Marsden and Tan. Books that deal with the causes of conflict are also plentiful: think of McKee’s Tusk Tusk and Six Men, and Popov’s Why?

Older children can examine books such as Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes by Coerr and Himler; My Hiroshima by Morimoto; and Faithful Elephants: A True Story of People, Animals and War by Tsuchiya and Lewin. Each of these books examines true

imagine and create a more peaceful world by working together. Cowhey’s black ants and buddhists: Thinking Critically and Teaching Differently in the Primary Grades is a good teacher resource for encouraging thinking about peace.


Citizenship and communal responsibility can be discussed through reading several Dr Seuss’ books such as Yertle the Turtle, The Sneetches, The Lorax, The Butter Battle Book and Horton

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