Joseph Coelho and Sam Usher
Frances Lincoln Children’s Books
Inspired by the NHS Thursday 8pm Clap for Carers earlier in the pandemic, award-winning performance poet Joseph Coelho wrote this gorgeous story, to demonstrate to children how they, like the child in this book can show appreciation for, and celebrate the key workers, in their own lives.
The story tells of Tatenda, a thankful child who says thank you whenever he gets an opportunity: thank you to mum and dad for making breakfast, thank you to the post lady for delivering his favourite comic, to the teacher for marking his work and to the shop staff who stack the shelves.
Of late though, nobody seems to hear his words of thanks, they’re too bogged down in their fears and worries.
Consequently, the boy decides that a much bigger thank you is needed: here’s what he does …
Suddenly this thank you turns into something colourful, full of energy and movement. Out the front door it whizzes and off down the road, followed by his parents, the post lady whose smile makes the thank you ‘grow and glow’, all the way to school where’s it’s given further sparkle from the teacher’s eyes. Then off into the market it goes, with everyone touched by it in pursuit, spreading joy and colour till it reaches a massive oak tree. And there among the branches it sticks.
Eventually after a massive team effort, Tatenda is able to reach and liberate the thank you, whereupon it continues on its way spreading colour and joy throughout the community and helping everyone feel better!
This wonderful, lyrical celebration of Joseph’s, superbly illustrated by Sam Usher, is a brilliant manifestation of the power of gratitude and of community strength.
For every book sold 3% of the retail price goes to Groundwork, a charity that helps some of the UK’s most disadvantaged communities deal with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic: another great way of showing appreciation is to get your own copy.