EMWF Kids’ Reads

Âmî Osâwâpikones (Dear Dandelion)

Written and illustrated by
SJ Okemow
Published by Annick Press

Ages: 4-7

A book review by Rosie (6), Evie (7), and Lumi (6)

Âmî Osâwâpikones (Dear Dandelion)

This book is about doing hard stuff. The dandelions are growing through cracks. They have to squeeze and squish their petals together to make it through. That shows they’re strong.

Hi Rosie, Evie, and Lumi! Can you tell us what this book is about?

Rosie: The book is about dandelions and a little girl who loves them. Dandelions sleep in the winter and come out in the spring. They are a strong flower. They make new homes for bees, snails, and animals. I love dandelions too. I call them ‘wishing pom-poms’. 

Evie: The book is about dandelions and the environment. Dandelions are important to the environment because they are good for the bees, and the snails, and mice, and others. You can you can make crowns for your hair, rings for your hands, and make a bouquet. The dandelions come back in the spring, and hide in the winter. They are pretty. 

Lumi: This book is about doing hard stuff. The dandelions are growing through cracks. They have to squeeze and squish their petals together to make it through. That shows they’re strong. What’s hard for me is doing a cartwheel. So I am practising and not giving up. This book is about how stuff can be more than one thing. There were blow flowers in the book and I didn’t know that dandelions turn into blow flowers. She makes a dirt and mud birthday cake and the blow flowers are the candles. Those are for wishes. I don’t know if I should tell you my wish because then it won’t come true. There’s a bee floating away on a blow flower – maybe he’s made a wish. It might be his birthday. 

What do you like about this book?

Rosie: I like that dandelions make homes for animals. The little girl in the story is like me. I like nature too.

Evie: I liked learning about dandelions, and how they are important for the environment. 

Lumi: Those dandelions are beautiful and dandelions are my favourite flower. They’re yellow and I like yellow. Putting barrettes in my hair makes me beautiful. I like that the girl wrote the story and drew the pictures. I like the bees that buzz around the dandelions. They go all through the story. There are bees at my house, too. I wish that I could have a dandelion umbrella. If there was a huge dandelion it would work.  Or I could make a huge huge huge bouquet working days after days. Then I might get the biggest dandelion umbrella and it would keep me dry.

What is your favourite part of the story?

Rosie: I like when they author says dandelions scatter on the ground and make constellations. It made me think of stars. 

Evie: I like that dandelions sleep in the winter and come back in the spring. I like that they help the bees. 

Lumi: The dog making a bouquet is my favourite part. It’s funny because the dog’s standing like a human and dogs don’t know how to pick flowers. The dog made the biggest bouquet. The girl has two dandelions and I think she’s giving them to her mom and I think the dog is keeping his. The dog is sweet. The mom made a little crown for her. That is sweet and kind and wearing a crown is fun. The dog found a frog. Dog and frog rhyme! I also like the dog in the dandelions at the end. It’s beautiful that the dog is napping in the dandelions. It reminds me of my dogs, Stella and Teddy because they like to sniff around in the grass and it looks like the dog is sniffing, too. I love dogs.

What do you like about the illustrations?

Rosie: My favourite picture in the book was the snuggling baby bunnies. They are so cute. The colours in the book are soft so it’s easy to see the illustrations. The pictures make me feel happy. 

Evie: I like that the bee is always flying on each page, and that there are a lot of animals. I like that the kids are playing games in the pictures because it reminds me of me and the games I like to play. 

Lumi: I like the dandelions at night in the field at because they look like stars. She decided to make the dandelions so beautiful. I wonder if you think it’s a beautiful as I see it. The dandelions are as beautiful as the stars because they’re bright and powerful. If you want to make them brighter at night you can put glow sticks beside them, too. The bunnies sleeping in winter are very cute. All the drawings are good and have pretty colours and lots of details like the birds’ footprints in the snow.

Why should kids read this book?

Rosie: This book is made for kids who like dandelions (just like me)!! It’s also for kids who like flowers and nature. 

Evie: Because they want to learn about dandelions and the environment. Lots of kids don’t know about dandelions and how important they are for the environment and animals and I found that interesting and other kids will probably find that interesting too. 

Lumi: Kids would like seeing the dandelions and they could learn some words in Cree. It’s a bit hard to learn the words but it got easier. I know “dear dandelion” and “flower”. And they could look at the end pictures and see honey bees pollinating the flowers. Bees give us honey. Kids could learn her traditions. She’s wearing a purple and white shawl for dancing and twirling under the dandelion blow flowers.

If you could ask the author or illustrator a question, what would it be?

Rosie: Can you please make more books about flowers? 

Evie: How do you make dandelion soup? For the illustrator: How did you make the bee look so real?

Lumi: How did you draw this good on every page? Are you the girl in the book? Do you like dandelions as much as I do?

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