Written by: Susanne Lewis
Illustrated by: Lisa Anchin
Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press, February 1, 2015
Suitable for ages: 4-8
Themes/Topics: survival, courage, Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, penguins, aquarium animals
Brief Synopsis: This is a Hurricane Katrina story about the rescue and aftermath of the penguins from the New Orleans Audubon Aquarium of the Americas Aquarium of the Americas. The story is told from the perspective of Patience and begins on the night the hurricane hit the city. As the oldest and head penguin, Patience had to be patient and keep Fanny, Ernie, Kohl, Bunny, Amquel, Voodoo, Rocky, Stachmo, Dyer, Zelda, Dennis and the other in line during this ordeal. Tom, the penguin keeper, helped them stay cool and fed until they were all transported to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Tom went along too, but couldn’t stay for long. Patience, once again, had to be patient. Nine months later, and the aquarium repaired, the penguins returned home in a New Orleans style celebration!
Opening pages: “Patience knew something was terribly wrong.
It was dark and steamy hot inside her home at Audubon Aquarium in New Orleans. Being an African penguin meant she was used to a warm climate, but not this warm!”
Why I like this book: Anyone with ties to New Orleans was personally affected by the wrath of Hurricane Katrina. This is one story that highlights the struggle and determination not only to survive but return. Everyone will root for Patience and her fellow penguins to go back home!
Resources: Suzanne Lewis has activities on her site here.
- Click here for Facts for Kids.
- Click here for Education World lessons on hurricanes.
- Click here for Scholastic site. Hurricane Katrina for upper primary and middle school kids.
- Click here for a wealth of articles and lessons for kids from TeacherVision
- Click here for more about hurricanes from Science for Kids.
- In My Heart: A Child’s Hurricane Katrina Story on YouTube.
- Children of the Storm on YouTube