Benny Bungarra’s big bush clean up (Magabala 2018) is a book that our 3.5-year-old makes us read on repeat… so that tells us something! I think I just like how Benny’s name rolls off the tongue.
The solid colour, simplistic images are appealing to a younger audience but vibrant and engaging for a middle primary audience too. The story is engaging following the ‘three problem’ structure- with dilemas Benny must help a snake, crow and a kangaroo.
The ‘clean up’ message isn’t subtle- they clearly step the reader through ways they can reduce, reuse and recycle rubbish. An important message- a little bit boring for the adult reader when your 3.5 year old makes you read it too many times!
This book is perfect for study in middle primary to learn about waste, sustainability and keeping our environment clean. It would be a great addition to Clean Up Australia Week celebrations. Students might create their own local bush version- what rubbish do they have issues with and what animals might get stuck (wombat in a tyre, fish in plastic can holders, hermits in tin cans). This book could be read in the school yard and students might race to collect rubbish. The school uses are endless- a must have for the classroom.