Author/Illustrator: Fiona Robinson
Interest Level: Ages 5 and Up
From the Book Jacket: All day, Whale swims through the ocean, advertising the annual art exhibition. Whale sees the beautiful things his friends make - Hammerhead's salvage sculptures, Giant Squid's ink paintings, Eel's patterns in the sand - and wishes he could be an artist too. If only he weren't so big, clumsy, and uninspired. Then one day, with help from a very unexpected source, he discovers his own distinct point of view and talent. This is a tale about defying expectation and finding the artist within.
At one point whale sinks to the bottom of the ocean floor. It's important to point out how we all sometimes get that sinking feeling and can feel really low.
This was a great lead-in to negative self talk and all of the UNtruths we tell ourselves.
Why It's On My Bookshelf: I almost passed this one up. That would have been a huge mistake. But the cover pulled me in and I had to see what it was all about. Whale's journey is everybody's journey. He doesn't believe he can do it, that he has no worth, and compares himself to others. He also has a lot of negative self-talk going on. He says a lot of "I can't" through the book. I am reading this book K-5 because I feel so strongly that kids are suffering with self-doubt throughout the school year. I want to help be their champ and turn themselves into their own champs. This is just the story. Also, a wonderful reminder to help be a cheerleader for others when they are down. Great stuff here.
A Link to This Book and Others You Might Find Helpful: