Martin and the River

Martin and the River

Written by: Lappano, Jon-Erik
Illustrated by: Bisaillon, Josée
ages 3 to 6 / grades P to 1

Faced with moving away from his beloved river in the country, Martin discovers it is possible to make a meaningful connection to nature in the city, too, and find ways to accept changes beyond his control.

Martin loves to play by the river near his house. He watches the great blue herons and looks for crayfish and otters. He builds forts and lies in the tall grass near the water. But one day Martin’s parents tell him they have to move away, to the city. 

The family spend a day in the city, exploring their future home. Martin rides the subway, visits the market, explores the museum and watches a street performer, but none of the city’s charms can compare with the river. Then his parents show him a small stream running through the park, and Martin senses something familiar in the air. 

When moving day arrives, Martin fills a small glass jar with river water as a keepsake. And when he returns to the stream, he discovers that his connection to nature can be just as wondrous in the city. 

This poetic story looks at the special relationship between an imaginative child and the natural world, and explores how that connection can be nurtured and recreated in a new place.


Key Text Features

dialogue

illustrations

vignettes


Correlates to the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.7
With prompting and support, describe the relationship between illustrations and the story in which they appear (e.g., what moment in a story an illustration depicts).

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.2
Retell stories, including key details, and demonstrate understanding of their central message or lesson.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.4
Identify words and phrases in stories or poems that suggest feelings or appeal to the senses.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.7
Use illustrations and details in a story to describe its characters, setting, or events.

Faced with moving away from his beloved river in the country, Martin discovers it is possible to make a meaningful connection to nature in the city, too, and find ways to accept changes beyond his control.

Martin loves to play by the river near his house. He watches the great blue herons and looks for crayfish and otters. He builds forts and lies in the tall grass near the water. But one day Martin’s parents tell him they have to move away, to the city. 

The family spend a day in the city, exploring their future home. Martin rides the subway, visits the market, explores the museum and watches a street performer, but none of the city’s charms can compare with the river. Then his parents show him a small stream running through the park, and Martin senses something familiar in the air. 

When moving day arrives, Martin fills a small glass jar with river water as a keepsake. And when he returns to the stream, he discovers that his connection to nature can be just as wondrous in the city. 

This poetic story looks at the special relationship between an imaginative child and the natural world, and explores how that connection can be nurtured and recreated in a new place.


Key Text Features

dialogue

illustrations

vignettes


Correlates to the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.7
With prompting and support, describe the relationship between illustrations and the story in which they appear (e.g., what moment in a story an illustration depicts).

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.2
Retell stories, including key details, and demonstrate understanding of their central message or lesson.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.4
Identify words and phrases in stories or poems that suggest feelings or appeal to the senses.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.7
Use illustrations and details in a story to describe its characters, setting, or events.

Published By Groundwood Books Ltd — Mar 1, 2022
Specifications 36 pages | 8.5 in x 10.75 in
Written By

JON-ERIK LAPPANO’s debut picture book, Tokyo Digs a Garden, illustrated by Kellen Hatanaka, won the Governor General’s Literary Award and was a finalist for the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award, the Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver Canadian Picture Book Award and Japan’s Sakura Medal. He has also written Maggie’s Treasure, illustrated by Kellen Hatanaka, to wide acclaim, and Song for the Snow, illustrated by Byron Eggenschwiler. Jon-Erik lives in Stratford, Ontario, with his family.

Illustrated by

JOSÉE BISAILLON has illustrated more than forty picture books, and she has been nominated for the Governor General’s Literary Award three times. The Snow Knows by Jennifer McGrath won the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award and was a finalist for the Lillian Shepherd Memorial Award for Excellence in Illustration. Dancing with Daisy by Jan L. Coates was a finalist for the Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver Canadian Picture Book Award. Josée lives with her family near Montreal, Quebec.

Audience ages 3 to 6 / grades P to 1
Key Text Features

dialogue; illustrations; vignettes

Common Core CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.4
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.7
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.7
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.2