Me… Jane by Patrick McDonnell
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company, 2011
Format: Picture Book
Award: 2012 Caldecott Honor Medal
This book tells the story of a young Jane Goodall who would grow up to be a well known primatologist. Jane Goodall had a toy chimpanzee name Jubilee that she would take everywhere with her while she learned about all kinds of animals and the environment around her. One day, she decided that she would move to Africa to fulfill her dream of a life of living with, and helping, all animals.
Like many other people, I know who Jane Goodall but it was really nice to read about her as a child. I think children would really like this book because she is know a famous primatologist and knowing what she was like as a child would probably interest them, especially since her greatest dreams came true. This story is really inspirational.
This book has a Caldecott Honor medal and it is well deserved. The illustrations are really adorable. The book is set up where one page will have words with that page having what appears to be stamps of animals or more sophisticated drawings and more childlike drawings on the opposite page. The drawings really help add to the story and you can feel the love and happiness Jane has around animals. There are two pages that include real drawings that Jane Goodall drew as a child! There is a part where she watches a chicken lay an egg and later on in the story, you see the same chicken with chicks behind her which I thought was quirky.
Have students write a letter to their twenty-years-in-the-future self’s about the dreams they hope will come true and who they hope to be.