You, Me and the Big Blue Sea is a beautifully illustrated Irish publication. Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick takes us back in time to the 19th Century in this adventure filled voyage on The Colander.
We see a mother sharing some photos with her son:
On each two page spread, she remembers things they did, saw, and heard, followed by “But you were only a baby. You wouldn’t remember.” Keen and careful observation of the illustration reveals that Baby see more than his Mom or Aunt Alice sees! He sees he young stowaway in a lifeboat, a man falling overboard, a man falling from the ship’s mast, the Captain asleep at the wheel, the whale outside the cabin porthole, and even the eventual fate of the Colander.
You, Me and the Big Blue Sea is a perfect book to explore Building Bridges Comprehension Strategies. We have explored predicting, inferring, visualising and making connections. My class just loved it! We also:
- added sound effects
- explored “thought tracking” and inferred what the Baby and other characters might say
- made Text-to-Self Connections: some us have taken the ferry from Rosslare
- made Text-t0-Text Connections: we read another book about the sea called Platypus
- made Text-to-World Connections: the ship in the story reminded some of us of Dunbrody Ship, New Ross
You, Me and the Big Blue Sea is also a wonderful portrayal of 19th Century life and fashion. I really wanted to explore this aspect of the book with my class but felt that the images were too small. I could hardly believe my luck when I stumbled on Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick’s own website. It contains a number of illustrations from the book. I used these images to create a very basic PowerPoint Presentation that I intend to use as part of a History Lesson next week. These larger illustrations will be perfect for this! Click here to download.
I have also created this fun Reader Response sheet that encourages children to look very carefully at the illustrations and to consider the story from the perspective of the Baby rather than Mom or Aunt Alice.
I hope that you like “You, Me and the Big Blue Sea” as much as my class and I do!
Miss Mernagh 🙂