Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Another HOT book to explain climate change...Winston of Churchill; One Bear's Battle Against Global Warming

illustrated by Jeremiah Trammell
(2007)

Churchill's a large great white bear who" hunts the Hudson Bay near the town of Churchill in the Canadian province of Manitoba."  He's obviously like the polar bear president because all the other polar bears listen to him as he explains why their icy habitat is melting more and  more every year.  He gets them all fired up; "We will fight for ice," boomed Winston.  "We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be.  We shall fight on the  beaches.  We shall fight on the landing grounds.  We shall fight in the fields and in the streets.  We shall fight on the hills. We shall never surrender." (9)  Yeah!  The bears are filled with hope and excitement that change will come.  Except one little bear in the back asks two important questions..."we don't live on an island" and "who are we fighting?" 

Winston explains that one, he was speaking metaphorically about the island and two, people are melting the ice with their cars and smoke stacks and deforestation practices.  The whole time Wiinston is speaking he is sucking on a big old cigar.  See, even Winston needs to make a change and Winston's wife isn't going to let him forget it.  She won't participate in the demonstrations he has planned until Winson quits smoking!  As she points out the cigar is an "instrument of pollution." (17)  Eventually the polar bears protest in front of all the nice tourists that come to see them and hopefully, they take the message to heart. 

Each of us, while we try to be eco-smart, aren't perfect and could probably do just one more thing to prevent climate change.  While I read this book I couldn't help but be reminded of  my latest favorite commercial.  I don't watch very much television but I think this one came on during the Super Bowl and I fell in love.  with the polar bear. in the Leaf commercial.  Do you know the one? 

Don't let the cuteness of the polar bears detract from their message...we all need to work hard to be earth-friendly so there's less melting, less pollution, less habitat loss.  While writing this I read an article at National Resources Defense Council's website and watched this video about our changing weather.  I know lots of people who don't believe in climate change but for me as an environmentalist I don't know how we can't be effecting the earth at an alarming rate with all we pour into and take out of our one amazing planet. 


1 comment:

  1. This sounds like a super cute story with some oomph! A great book to use in an elementary Science classroom. And I just like the idea of a polar bear smoking a cigar :) Thanks for the tip!!

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