Perfect Picture Book Friday – Knut

Happy Friday, everyone!

I don’t know where this week has flown off to, but my goodness it passed me right by!  I’m still on about Tuesday!

The perfect picture book I had lined up for today turned out not to meet my standards of perfection – it was “meh” (that is an industry term meaning didn’t love it :)) – so, given the craziness of life on Blueberry Hill, I am recycling a beloved favorite.  I hope you like this one as much as I do.  And how fitting to have a book about a polar bear when the arctic has been at my house since Christmas and shows no sign of leaving any time soon!  (Anyone seen John Belushi’s SNL skit about The Guest Who Wouldn’t Leave? :))

Knut: How One Little Polar Bear Captivated The World
Written (Told) By: Juliana, Isabella, and Craig Hatkoff and Dr. Gerald R. Uhlich
Photographs By: Peter Griesbach, Andre Schule, Sean Gallup,  Rainer Jensen and others.
Scholastic Press, November 2007, nonfiction

Suitable For: ages 5 and up

Themes/Topics: animals, endangered animals, caring, environmentalism

Opening:  “One December afternoon, in a cozy, dark enclosure in a zoo in Berlin, Germany, a polar bear cub was born.”

Brief Synopsis:  This is the true story of Knut, a newborn polar bear whose mother was unable to care for him.  Thomas Dorflein, a bear keeper at the zoo, became Knut’s “foster father” – bottle feeding him, bathing him, sleeping beside him and teaching him to play and swim.  Knut was loved the world over, and helped bring recognition to the plight of polar bears, endangered by the potential loss of their habitat.

Links to resources:  Knut Teaching Resources.  This link has subsequent links to activities, video clips, articles, and other animals-against-adversity stories.  The back of the book also has lots of information about polar bears, how they are threatened, and how you can help.

Why I Like This Book:  It’s a true story, and a deeply touching one, that is also educational and informative.  The photographs are gorgeous and very appealing.  It shows that there are people in the world who care enough to sacrifice a great deal to help someone else – even if that someone else happens to be a baby polar bear.  The book brings attention to ecological concerns, the environment, and caring for all species, and lists ways kids can help.

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF bloggers, please leave your post-specific links on the list below so we can all come enjoy your picks for this week!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

40 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – Knut

  1. Lauri Meyers says:

    There's a Knut movie from Disney nature which was quite good too. I looked at Wikipedia after the movie and found Knut's handler had passed away shortly after filming. Then Knut passed away not long after from a mysterious illness (broken heart?). This ppbf could even be used in a high school setting to talk about the controversy of captivity and human intervention vs driving awareness.

  2. Iza Trapani says:

    Oh how I love Knut- and his good handler. A shame that they both passed away and at such young ages (Knut 4- handler 44.) This is a great book, and I look forward to seeing the movie.

  3. Teresa Robeson says:

    I'm cracking up at your Belushi-guests who won't leave statement!

    I've seen Knut somewhere before but haven't read it yet so will check it out. 🙂

    Happy weekend! Hope things will settle down on Blueberry Hill!

  4. Julie says:

    This one went over very well with my kids at the time, and I bet they will share it with their kids! Knut is cute, and that rhymes!

  5. patientdreamer says:

    Knut is a favourite of mine too. Surprised it had not been reviewed already. Beautiful choice Susanna. Have a good weekend. Off to bed now… its 3am Sat.

  6. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    My goodness you're up late, Diane! I love this book, and it has been reviewed before – by me a couple years ago! – but in a pinch for a book today I recycled it because it's such a good one I don't want anyone to miss it 🙂 Sweet dreams! 🙂

  7. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    At last! Someone else who has seen that John Belushi skit! Hahahahaha! Glad to have someone to laugh with over it, Teresa 🙂 you will love Knut – gorgeous photos, great story… and since it's only about his early life they don't get to the part where he died unexpectedly at age 4… so sad 😦 Thank you for your settling wishes – nothing bad is going on, life is just VERY busy. I think it has something to do with how many kids we have…. 🙂

  8. Clarbojahn says:

    I haven't read this one but I love true animal stories.

    Stay warm, Susanna, the thaw is coming. We're experiencing a little of it now , Here in NO VA. The snow is finally melting .

  9. Patricia Tilton says:

    Such a charming story for kids. Have gifted this book many times. In picking a polar bear book, you must not be ready to let go of the winter weather. 🙂

  10. Angela Brown says:

    Knut looks TOO adorable on that cover. And bringing awareness to the plight impacting animals far away is a good thing. It's a reminder that what we do here and now has ripple effects that stretch far and wide.

  11. Laura Anne Miller says:

    Oh – I love Knut. And we had a baby polar bear at the Detroit Zoo not too long ago. We took our school kids and the full grown polar bear was laying on top of the glass tunnel we walked through. Talk about awesome timing! I also got a couple of 'mehs' this week. I just didn't know the term which is perfect.

  12. Vivian Kirkfield says:

    Great book, Susanna…and please don't apologize for 'recycling'…I just left a post on the Making Picture Book Magic FB page, asking how in the world you maintain your sanity with the schedule you have and all the things that you do. I may have to do that as well…or just not post today…as much as I have tried, I cannot stretch 24 hours into 36. 🙂

  13. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    I have to post on PPBF because I'm the host and have the list. Occasionally that means recycling a book from way back. But YOU can take a week off whenever you want! You should definitely take the time for your priorities – there just aren't enough hours in the day! 🙂

  14. Rosi says:

    Oh, that face! He looks so sweet. He looks like my little Maltese. It looks like this is a book you can judge by its cover. Thanks, Susanna, for telling me about it.

  15. Vivian Kirkfield says:

    I could not stay away! This afternoon, I saw an amazing food art video…and had to find a book for kids that addressed picky eaters…if you get a chance to see some of those awesome food creations, you'll see why I had to do the post. Realtors tell us that with homes, everything is location, location, location. But when it comes to picky eaters, everything is presentation, presentation, presentation.:)

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