A Morning with Grandpa
Sylvia Liu, Author
Christina Forshay, Illustrations
Lee & Low Books, Fiction, Apr. 1, 2016
Suitable for Ages: 5-8
Themes: Intergenerational relationships, Tai Chi, Yoga, Grandfathers, Multicultural
Opening: “Mei Mei watched Grandpa dance slowly among the flowers in the garden. He moved like a giant bird stalking through a marsh. His arms swayed like reeds in the wind.”
Book Jacket Synopsis: Mei Mei’s grandpa is practicing tai chi in the garden, and Mei Mei is eager to join in. As Gong Gong tries to teach her the slow, graceful movements, Mei Mei enthusiastically does them with her own flair. Then Mei Mei takes a turn, trying to teach Gong Gong the yoga she learned in school. Will Gong Gong be able to master the stretchy, bendy poses?
Why I like this book:
Sylvia Liu has written a story that celebrates the special relationship between a granddaughter and her grandfather as they learn tai chi and yoga together. Mei Mei watches her grandfather practice tai chi, wants to know more, and adds a lively spin to his methodical movements. Grandfather shows patience with Mei Mei’s enthusiastic and energetic interpretation of tai chi and praises her movements as “perfect.” He’s a good sport when Mei Mei in turn shows him yoga movements, despite his creaky knees. Liu’s book is a beautiful intergenerational story about a grandfather and grandchild teaching each other something new. Christina Forshay’s colorful illustrations are warm, expressive and capture the lovely memories of a morning spent together.
Resources: The book includes instructions for the tai chi and yoga exercises described in the text in the back matter of the book — a fun activity for children, parents and grandparents. Visit Sylvia Liu at her website.