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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
Findus, Food and Fun
by Eva-Lena Larsson and Kennert Danielsson
Age Range: 6-8
Findus, Food and Fun is a book for all curious children. Findus, the talking cat in the green stripy dungarees and his eccentric owner, Farmer Pettson are the famous creation of Swedish author and illustrator Sven Nordqvist. The comic tales, of which nine have been published in English by Hawthorn Press, of their antics are filled with mishaps, subtle humour and delightful characterisation.
Inspired by Nordqvistís exquisite and expressive illustrations, this is a craft and nature activity book through the seasons. Join Findus, Farmer Pettson and their helpful friends the muckles as they explore this month-by-month anthology compiled full of things for children to make and do. It covers both indoor and outdoor activities including nature, foraging and food growing, recycling, gardening and crafts.
Whether itís propagating house plants, sowing seeds, or creating a herb garden; making a bean brooch or necklace, playing the scent memory game, baking a delicious red current cake or rosehip soup to learning about the strength of the wind and how to gauge rainfall, collecting wild food, making compost, or building a nesting box there are plenty of different activities for children (and adults) to get involved in.
Why not build a car with wheels made out of discs cut from the trunk of a Christmas tree and nutshells for headlights or create a grass head with growing hair from odd worn out socks, but there are some other more practical activities such as creating chocolate leaf mould decorations, dying with onion skins and making a bird feeder out of a fruit juice carton.
Findus, Food and Fun written by Eva-Lena Larsson and Kennert Danielsson in 1998 is now a world classic but it is the first time that it has appeared in English translated by Nathan Large.
Whatís lovely about this delightfully original book is that all the activities have been so cleverly woven around Findus, Pettson and the other creatures that are part of their life on the farm. Some of the ideas are quirky or even crazy, but there are also lots of opportunities to learn about nature, science and be creative as well as providing enormous fun. Itís sure to be popular with parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles as it will make an ideal Christmas present.