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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Book Review: Raven Tales- The Games

Book Review: "Raven Tales-The Games"
By: Christine McFarlane

Christmas is fast approaching, and though I know I should have posted this review a little sooner, (the book only came into my hands about a week ago) I thought I would review a couple of children's books. My next children's book review will be "Seven Gifts for Cedar" written by Metis author Cherie Dimaline. If you can't get these books this year,  maybe  you will keep them in mind either for next year, or keep them in mind for another occasion throughout the year to come.

This first review is one in a series of 26 new graphic novels for children in grades 4-6. This new series of graphic novels is based on the popular Emmy nominated TV series Raven Tales. The Raven Tales stories are built upon traditional stories, and invite young readers to join Raven and his cast of friends as they entertain you with stories from Aboriginal cultures across North America .

The story "Raven Tales-The Games" is about games and fair play that are shared by First Nations people of the Northwest Coast of Canada. It is about learning how to get along and also about how winning isn't everything. It teaches young readers that games are also about trying your best and having fun in the process.

Within the story, the people of two distant villages meet for the first time. The children don't get along at first with the new children they meet in this new village, so their parents decide that the way to get them to get along with each other is to play and compete against each other. The children engage in games like swimming, running and archery, and every winner receives a small totem to recognize their efforts.

Through the games the children's parents have them play in, the children learn to respect one another, they realize the value of games and decide to hold a friendly competition every year.

These graphic novels  follow the adventures of Raven, the powerful transformer and trickster from Aboriginal folklore. There are 26 graphic novels in total and each title features an interpretation of a popular tale from the teachings of First Nations peoples. Stories vary from trickster tales, origin stories, pourquoi stories as well as traditional tales.

They are perfect for independent reading, small groups reading in the classroom and school library. There is also a Teacher Guide for the Raven Tales Series that include support for small-group work, support for connecting Raven Tales to First Nations cultures and international and aboriginal cultures with similar stories, discussion prompts and graphic organizers for reader response.

These graphic novels are available through Scholastic Education. For more information please visit or contact Scholastic Canada through their website at

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