Saturday, February 13, 2010

Tsunami!

Ojiisan is a wise old rice farmer who has gained great wealth, but still lives simply.  He is one of the most revered people in his village and is sought out often for advice.  Ojiisan lives on the mountain above the village next to the ocean. One autumn day, instead of participating in a harvest celebration in the village, Ojiisan stays on the mountain to work in his rice field. While he is in the field, an earthquake causes movement on the mountain.  Earthquakes are common and there is little concern after the shock passes, but Ojiisan thinks this one feels quite different.  He looks out to the ocean and sees the water receding quickly.  Suddenly, he realizes that a tsunami is coming and the villagers are in extreme danger below.  What follows next is a sacrificial act by Ojiisan to save his fellow villagers.

Tsunami!, written by Kimiko Kajikawa and illustrated by Ed Young, would be a great text to use to teach a lesson on cause and effect.  Ojiisan gives up something very valuable for the lives of his people. Kajikawa's story could also serve as a character lesson or as an introduction to science lessons on earthquakes and/or tsunamis.  Ed Young's collage illustrations are simply amazing with the use vivid colors and his attention to detail. 

Click on Kimiko's link above for lesson plans based on Tsunami!.

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