PPBF: My Winter City

Author: James Gladstone
 Gary Clement
Publisher: Groundwoodl, 2019
Themes: winter, city life, sledding

Opening: see spread below.

Summary: (from my library catalog) A young boy wakes up in the early light of a winter morning, pulls on his boots and mittens, and steps out into the snowy city with his dad. They trudge through the snow, their dog bounding along beside them, then a slushy, steamy bus ride takes them to the tobogganing hill for some winter fun. The boy describes all the sights and sounds of the day, from the frost in Dad’s beard and the snow “pillows” in the park, to the noisy clunking snow plows and the singing buskers they pass on their way home. That night, the boy lies awake under cozy covers, reflecting on the day, as snow blankets the world outside his window. This is winter in the city.

I picked this book because: it’s so hot here (again) I needed some snow! At this point I would welcome it in real life! And this title did not disappoint. Even on a hot day, it pays to slow down. Told from the point of view of a city child, the reader is invited to make connections with their own experiences (though I’d love to hear back from someone who hasn’t lived in an area with winter weather!) A walk through any city offers us a plethora of details if we pay attention, and the illustrations here are delightful and refreshing, yet warm the heart like a cup of cocoa.

Resources/activities! discuss what parts of the globe experience snow in winter, the differences in our experiences to snow in the country or suburbs, mountains or plains – even the seaside. I would pair it with a reading of Dylan Thomas’ A Child’s Christmas in Wales (so many beautifully illustrated editions and a delightful film!), even if you don’t celebrate Christmas.

For more Perfect Picture Book Friday picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

3 thoughts on “PPBF: My Winter City

  1. When I saw your “refreshing” selection today, I thought your picked it because of the heat! It is a great story about noticing things around you and a fun romp in the snow. Fun choice with stunning illustrations.


  2. I love this book. The scenes are Toronto scenes. I think there’s a streetcar in one of them and that greenhouse is Allan Gardens. Once upon a time I lived just blocks away from it.


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