The Barefoot Book of Earth Tales

by Anne Wilson

Paperback, 2013



Call number

398.2 Cas

Call number

398.2 Cas

Local notes

398.2 Wil



Barefoot Books (2013), Paperback, 96 pages


Seven folktales from around the world express the belief that the Earth and all living things are sacred, and that it us up to each of us to care for our part of the planet. Includes an introduction and "eco-activity" for each tale.

Physical description

96 p.; 10.9 inches


1846869412 / 9781846869419



User reviews

LibraryThing member AbigailAdams26
Seven traditional stories from around the world are gathered in The Barefoot Book of Earth Tales, each with an environmental theme, each presented with an accompanying craft or project that allows the young reader to become more involved with the narrative. Some of the selections here - like the Aboriginal myth of The Sun Mother, from Australia - are creation stories, explaining how the world came to be, and what humanity's relationship to the earth (and its creatures) ought to look like. Others, like the Nigerian tale, Why the Sky Is Far Away, are pourquoi tale and cautionary fable in one, warning against greed and over-consumption, while explaining a natural phenomenon. Grumpy Gecko, a cumulative tale from Bali, highlights the interdependency of all life, while the Comanche legend, She Who Is Alone, points to the need for balance, for both giving and taking, when it comes to our relationship with the natural world.

Rounding out the selections are The Magic Garden, a Kazakh story in which two unselfish friends use an unexpected windfall to create a beautiful garden that will be of benefit to future generations; Amrita's Tree, a historical legend from the Bishnoi people of India, in which a young girl's brave actions save the forest that is so important to the survival of her people; and Stink Water, a Welsh tale in which a human and fairy couple must work out a plan for waste disposal that is mutually satisfactory. An engaging collection, well worth the time of young folktale lovers and environmentalists, The Barefoot Book of Earth Tales is illustrated in vividly colorful folk-motif style by Anne Wilson, who also collaborated with Dawn Casey on The Great Race: The Story of the Chinese Zodiac. All in all, a recommended title!
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LibraryThing member alexandraharris
This book is a great way to introduce folk tales to the classroom. It provides students with a chance to learn about different parts of the world (you could easily incorporate it into a geography lesson where the students learn where these different locations are in relation to the others). Also, I loved the activities that came along with each story. It provides an opportunity for the students to be active in the story. These stories were fun and seemed to be written for a younger audience. I think that this will help students have an easier time making connections with the story.… (more)
LibraryThing member lalenaz
One of the stories summary is as follow: Amrita loves nature and trees and she has a special tree that she goes to. Woodcutters come to cut down the trees in the area. Amrita calls on the village's women and they all hug the trees. This resulted the woodcutters not to cut the trees. Later, the Maharajah came and declared his appreciation for Amrita's courage.
This book has beautiful illustrations. It also has some craft making suggestions at the end of each story. These stories are not only about the earth and taking care of the earth, but also about human's relationships like the Magic Garden, and Amrita's Tree.
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LibraryThing member korneder
every classroom teacher should own this book!
LibraryThing member cshupp
I loved this book. I really liked the activity suggestions in between the stories and how they related. I thought it was very interesting and I really liked the stories.
LibraryThing member sskatherine
Interesting and thoughtful renderings of fables from around the world. The author chose to tell stories that teach the reader to be more aware of his or her affect on the planet. She states "I have chosen a selection of tales that both celebrate our connection with nature, and remind us how important it is to look after this Earth, our home" (Casey, pg. 4, 2009). This is a great message to send to readers, and the illustrations included throughout reflect this as well. They are lively and culture relevant. Each story includes a project that relates to the culture and story itself. I find this to be especially thoughtful because it allows the reader to take the story a bit further, and use a kinesthetic and hands on approach to internalizing the message of this book. Would be great to include in any lesson about the countries within, especially if a teacher chose to include the project as well. Well done!… (more)
LibraryThing member laurlou
This book held numerous folktales from around the world and tell about life lessons. Recipes and activities are included in each story.
LibraryThing member Lizjensen
The folktale I read was called The Sun Mother. This folktale was about how the world came to be. Mother Sun woke up in the sky and went down to Earth to awaken all of Earth's creatures.

This story was lovely, and had beautiful illustrations. It showed how Aboriginal Australians thought the world was created. The theme of this story is to protect nature and the environment. It is important for children to see how harmonious the wold is and to cherish it.… (more)
LibraryThing member hmischke
I would definitely have this book as a part of my classroom library. I think it is really important for children to be exposed to many different cultures and folktales are a great way to do that. I may even have students look into their ancestry and find a folktale from a place they are connected to.




(7 ratings; 3.9)
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