Walk This World: a Celebration of Life in a Day
Lotta Nieminen, a Finnish-born graphic designer and art director
Big Picture Press, an imprint of Candlewick Press, November 2013
As you consider gifts for this holiday season, we suggest … (book #2 in our Gifted recommendations) …
Visit 10 countries in one book! This stylish lift-the-flap book is a challenging work of art in all the right ways. There are so many paths for wandering through this book that you’ll be engaged no matter what your age may be:
- Study the layout. There’s a clever arrangement of squares and rectangles which condense traveling through a country onto each two-page spread. Which aspect of the country is represented in a particular space? When you lift the flaps, does a story emerge?
- Repetition. There’s a particular character who is present in each country, the “walker.” Always doing something different, make up your own story about how that character is interacting with the customs, food, and landmarks.
- Recognizing patterns: Do you note what aspects of life are represented in each country? Shopping? Birds? Worship? Dance? How do these patterns emerge? This type of focus is useful for fostering skills that will help with critical thinking, creative problem-solving, and looking at art, reading books, and studying subjects in-depth.
- Language. The round-the-world trip begins in New York City, the author’s home, with the words “Walk This World.” That phrase is present in each spread but in the native language of the country. What are the similarities and differences in the language?
- Culture. Sports, music, food, landmarks, animals, vegetation: each is paid homage as we “walk” from country to country.
A beautiful work of art, Walk This World will please ages 4 and up, especially visual learners, travelers, and people (children included) who’d like to experiment with their own art in this style. Perfectly accessible, I recommend this book for a shared discussion among children and adults, especially in a family or small group of two to five.