Monday, April 7, 2008
A. Title: Saint Patrick
B. Author: Ann Tompert
C. Illustrator: Michael Garland
D. Pushlisher: Boyds Mills Press
E. Genre: Biography Picture Book
F. Reading Level: 3-4
G. Summary: Saint Patrick starts off with a forward, which is a prayer by Saint Patrick. A long time ago a boy was born near the Irish sea named Succat, but he would later be known as Patrick. Patrick's father was a well-off man who was also a deacon in the church, but Patrick wasn't a religious child. Patrick also grew up very comfortable with educated parents, but he wasn't very into his studies and so he was kind of bad at school. When he was sixteen, Irish pirates attacked their village and looted and killed. He was captured and sold into slavery. He was sold to a chieftain in Northwast Ireland, and there he took care of his master's cattle and sheep; his master never treated him poorly. While out in the fields, Patrick had alot of time to think, and he thought about he never really payed attention to the teachings of the church; so Patrick decided to fast and pray. At night he heard a voice telling him he would go to his own country and that his boat was waiting for him. Patrick set off toward the Irish sea some two hundred miles away. Along the way Patrick suffered many hardships but he never lost his drive or his hope. He made it to the port and asked the departing ship to go and they said no. Patrick prayed as he walked away and the captain changed his mind. The boat landed and then men wandered for a month in the woods, starving. The men on the ship were pagons and asked Patrick for help; he told them to pray to his god for food, and then the pigs arrived. Patrick made it back home, and he realized that he needed to live his life for God and to teach the Irish heathens. Next, Patrick sailed to France, spent several years preparing for a mission, studied to become a deacon, and later was ordained a priest. Eventually, Patrick was made a bishop, and he and his followers set out on his mission to convert/save many barbaric Irish peoples. The illustrations in this book are done in mixed media.
H. Response: The thing that I love most about Saint Patrick is that the illustrations are so colorful that you just can't take your eyes off of them. They're clearly done in mixed media with what appears to be digetal imagery, collages, different styles and types of papers and materials, etc. Each illustration is full of different types of media, and they all create these bright, eye-poping, vivid images. They're very cool, and I definitely suggest checking them out. The story itself was really interesting to read because I am Irish and Catholic and sadly, I didn't really know the story of Saint Patrick. The story has a lot to do with god and religious topics, but it also had other themes including beating the odds, and never giving up. This isn't my favorite children's picture book, but it definitely had some really great aspects to it.
I. Teaching Ideas: This book doesn't have as many classroom teaching opportunities as many of the others that I've read. One idea would be when discussing or teaching about other countries or religions using this book as a way to start the lesson. Saint Patrick could be used to introduce a unit on Christianity or Irish history.
J. Bio Poem:
Devout, Compassionate, Trusting, and Brave
Friend of sailor Pagans
Lover of God, faith, and Praying
Who feels scared, nervous, and under prepared
Who finds happiness in spreading the word of God
Who needs God to guide him and protect him
Who gives the knowledge of Christianity to those in need
Who fears the barbaric lands of Ireland, failing, and being killed
Who would like to see the Pagans enlightened to Christianity
Who enjoys fasting
Who like to wear a simple, brown robe when I preach Christianity
Resident of Southwest Britain near the Irish Sea