You may remember that back in March, I recommended Britta Teckentrup’s “A Spotting Book” series… While tracking those books down, I came across Teckentrup’s Under the Same Sky. You may also remember that back in February, I recommended This is How We Do It by Matt Lamothe. Under the Same Sky has a similar powerful message to This Is How We Do It, though aimed at slightly younger kids and with more accessible characters and narrative.
Whereas This Is How We Do It connects people around the world, showing their various living situations and lifestyles but uniting them through their views of the night sky, Under the Same Sky introduces the same concept of differences overshadowed by the more important idea of living together in the same large world, but with through the somewhat softer characters of animals. Teckentrup shows readers a group of diverse animals from various ecosystems around the world. Each animal is connected to the next through both her verse and her use of cut-outs in the illustrations. For many younger children, these animals may be more tangible starting points for conversations about similarities, differences, and uniting together despite those differences.
The writing here is also simple and easy to read, allowing this to be a wonderfully soothing, yet powerful, bedtime story for young listeners. Teckentrup begins with, “We live under the same sky… in lands near and far,” and closes by writing, “We dream the same dreams… and we dream them… together.” And her illustrations! The animals are always shown with what children might assume to be families, often even depicted as adult and baby pairings. This touch, too, makes Under the Same Sky a delightful story to read cuddled with loved ones.
Publishers recommend for ages 3-6.