Give a Goat
When Mrs. Rowell’s class is inspired by a rainy-day book to reach out with helping hands, wonderful things happen. Not the least of these wonderful things is a combined, enthusiastic effort by the entire class to reach a common goal. In this true story readers will discover even the smallest good-will efforts are rewarded with positive results. Humorous illustrations show the philanthropic process from inspiration through brainstorming to getting down to work, collecting funds and celebrating success. Give a Goat is a template for adults and children who want to work together to experience the satisfaction of giving to others and making a difference in the world.
GIVE A GOAT, by Jan West Schrock, is a gift that keeps on giving. How can reading a picture book in one country make a difference to a family in need living thousands of miles away? And what does a goat have to do with it, anyway? When Mrs. Rowell’s class is inspired by a rainy-day book to reach out with helping hands, wonderful things happen. Not the least of these wonderful things is a combined, enthusiastic effort by the entire class to reach a common goal. In this true story readers will discover even the smallest good-will efforts are rewarded with positive results. Humorous illustrations show the philanthropic process from inspiration through brainstorming to getting down to work, collecting funds and celebrating success. Give a Goat is a template for adults and children who want to work together to experience the satisfaction of giving to others and making a difference in the world. This book may inspire you, too. Making a change for the better is as easy as giving a goat!
“After their teacher reads them Page McBrier’s Beatrice’s Goat (S & S, 2001), a book about an impoverished Ugandan girl and how her life is improved by a special gift, a fifth-grade class is determined to collaborate on a fundraising project for the charitable organization that donated the animal. Schrock, daughter of the founder of Heifer International, uses an unnamed student as her narrator to describe the kids’ efforts to raise money by selling healthy snacks. Readers will quickly identify with the classroom setting and dynamics and appreciate the author’s direct approach in outlining the events. The original spark of inspiration, the planning process, the endeavor’s success, the mathematics of running a business, and background information on Heifer International are seamlessly integrated into the text. Darragh’s pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations match the upbeat tone of the narrative, support the facts being shared, and provide touches of humor. Though Schrock focuses on raising funds for a specific organization, the story ends with other classes reaching out to the local food pantry and the Red Cross. The message of community service is what children will ultimately remember and hopefully be inspired to emulate: ‘I think everyone learned that giving—and passing on the gift—feels really good’. A first choice.” -Maura Bresnahan, High Plain Elementary School, Andover, MA, School Library Journal: Grade 1–5
“Page McBrier’s Beatrice’s Goat (2001) introduced the work of Heifer International in a picture-book story about a girl whose family is changed by the gift of a goat. Illustrated in whimsical ink-and-watercolor artwork, this message-driven title by the daughter of the organization’s founder shows kids how to get involved in Heifer’s mission. After a teacher reads Beatrice’s Goat to her fifth-grade class, her students work together to buy a goat for a needy family through Heifer’s program. With an initial loan from their teacher, they prepare and sell healthy snacks, eventually earning more than enough to buy the animal, educating their school about Heifer’s work in the process. The story, which includes interesting details of project management, is a clear advertisement for both Heifer and the rewards of community service. Still, teachers seeking portrayals of kids cooperating to make a difference, both in their communities and beyond, will find this book a welcome resource.” -Gillian Engberg, Booklist
Honors and Awards:
Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People, Children’s Book Council / National Council on the Social Studies (CBC / NCSS)
Maine Literary Awards, Honorable Mention
Society of School Librarians International (SSLI), Honor Book
WHY READ THIS BOOK?
Inspired by a storybook to fundraise for Heifer Project, a classroom of children cooperate to meld a math unit with their goal of giving a goat. Their goodwill effort inspires several other classrooms to reach out with philanthropic projects.
Service projects, education, math.
Not all children have access to free education.
Here is a link to the program page for Give a Goat. It was one of our featured books in 2011-2012. There is a librarian activity and a 5th-6th grade lesson plan for this book.
About the Author/Illustrator:
Author Jan West Schrock’s father, Dan West, was a midwestern farmer who served as a relief worker during the Spanish civil war. As he was handing out milk to needy children one day, he realized, ?These children don’t need a cup. They need a cow.? When he returned home, he founded Heifers for Relief, and its first shipment of heifers was sent to Puerto Rico in 1944. Jan herself spent twenty-eight years as a classroom teacher, special needs teacher, and administrator, both in the United States and abroad. She is now a senior advisor for Heifer International, an organization that has grown to serve over 8.5 million people in more than 125 countries. Jan lives in Westbrook, Maine,
but travels the world to talk about ?passing on the gift.?
Aileen Darragh is a graphic artist and illustrator. She lives in Sanford, Maine, with her husband, her three girls, and their golden retriever Shadow. Her previous work includes To Touch a Cloud by Scott Arnold. Aileen provides volunteer graphic design services for her local library reading programs and for local school teachers. (Aileen is also a working mom, as assistant to the CEO of Dole & Bailey, Inc.) She and her kids love art projects of every kind: needlepoint, needlepunch, embroidery, sewing, beading, building doll houses, painting, drawing, and dyeing fabric. They have a chest of old clothes and love to dress up and put on impromptu plays (with the dog playing the prince when necessary). Black Beauty, the model for Give A Goat is owned by a friend of the family.
|Dimensions||9 x 10.00 x 0.508 in|
Jan West Schrock