Picture a Tree by Barbara Reid
"There is more than one way to picture a tree." Depending of the seasons, its size and its type, a tree can be so many things. A tree could be a tunnel (when trees from opposing sidewalks touch each other over the street), an ocean (when seen from a high rise terrace, a city filled with trees) or a home. Trees can be the umbrellas that protect us from the sun on hot summer days, or can be skeletons in the winter. The fallen leaves of trees in the autumn are part of "a wild goodbye party", while the evergreens in the winter get to "put on snowsuits". Weather they are baby trees, young or old, they all hold spring in their branches, "sleeping like a baby." "Picture a tree. What do you see?"
Illustrating the book with her incredible Plasticine style, Barbara Reid has created a beautiful book that wows at every page turn. I stayed on each page for awhile, admiring the detail and vibrant quality of each spread. The text is lyrical with great use of figurative language to explore in the classroom and many possible extension activities. I will have my students "picture a tree" and write from the point of view of one of the trees in their neighborhood. This is a gorgeous book that I'm truly happy to have in my personal library now.