Saturday, April 23, 2016

Bogtrotter by Margaret Wild illustrated by Judith Rossell

Bogtrotter is good fun but at the same time it raises some interesting questions.  It has been selected for the CBCA Notable list for 2016.  Take a look at some of the subjects I have listed for this book :


Bogtrotter lives a life defined by routine.  Every day is exactly the same as the one before until one day frog asks the first of a series of profound questions :

Question One
"Why do you run all day long?"

Question Two
"Don't you ever do anything new and different?"

And much later possibly the most important, even life changing, question :
Question Three
"Do you ever run outside the bog?"

After the first two questions Bogtotter sees new things in his environment - flowers, a family of muskrats, a tree branch just perfect for swinging, a family of ducks and even the delight of a dance in the summer rain.  Sadly though something is missing from his life.  Take some time now to look in his little home.  There are pictures of other bogtrotters on his wall or are they of this bogtrotter?

Our friend the bogtrotter is quite an endearing character.  Look at his eyes - these beautifully reflect his emotions. Now look at the way he moves. Judith Rossell shows such lively movement through her joyous illustrations.

Here is a review in our magazine Reading Time.  Here are a set of very useful teaching notes from the publisher.  Judith Rossell's book Withering-by-sea is a firm favourite in our school library.

It might be good to pair Bogtrotter with The Bunyip of Berkeley's Creek - this is a delightful book to read aloud and also deals with isolation, identity and important philosophical questions.

We always enjoy sharing books by Margaret Wild with the students in our school.  In fact she has one whole shelf in our library.  With our youngest students I especially love to read Lucy Goosey, Puffling, Little Humpty and Miss Lilly's fabulous pink feather boa.

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