Last year, we received copies of ‘My Home’ and ‘The Wolf’ for review, but I noticed that Noah wasn’t really interested in The Wolf books, and decided to postpone my review of the books, as I wanted to wait till he was able to properly enjoy them.
Recently, I took the books out again, and tested the waters by reading one to him. I didn’t read the book word for word, and shortened the lengthier portions for him, which probably helped, as he was fully engaged, and asked me to read another one after I had finished the first book. We read all five of the English version at a go, before he selected his favourites to be read again. I know I’m probably going to regret saying this, but I do wish he can read on his own soon!
The Wolf series
This series recounts the hilarious adventures of a grumpy but kind-hearted wolf as he lands himself in all sorts of sticky situations. A charming and adorable character who steals the hearts of children and adults alike! Sold in over 20 countries and translated into 15 languages, this bestselling children’s book series is currently studied in more than 650 schools.
Book 1: The Wolf who Wanted to Change his Colour
Wolf is in a bad mood! He’s really fed up with his boring black fur. So he is going to try out a new colour each day until he finds one he likes. Though it seemed like such a good idea at first, things seem to be getting from bad to worse! Will Wolf ever learn to accept himself as he is? (Topic: Self-acceptance)
Book 2: The Wolf who Loved Himself Too Much
Wolf and his friends are going to take part in the Big Bad Wolf competition. To win the competition, Wolf is going to be nasty as possible! But what will happen to him when he finds himself in trouble and without a single friend to help him out (Topic: Humility)
Book 3: The Wolf who Searched for a Girlfriend
Everyone in the Faraway Forest is in love… Wolf is fed up with being alone! With the help of his well-meaning friends, Wolf learns to dress up, recite poetry and gather flowers. But will all these truly help him to find a girlfriend? (Topic: Love)
Book 4: The Wolf who Did Not Want to Walk Anymore
Wolf has had quite enough of walking. He decides to try riding a bicycle, driving a car, and even flying in an aeroplane, but they are all simply too awful. Poor Wolf is going to find out that walking does have its advantages! (Topic: Months, Vehicles)
Book 5: The Wolf who Wanted to be an Artist
Wolf is passionate about the arts! But does Wolf really have talent in painting, sculpting and acting? If he only knew that he had the soul of a rock star instead, he’d soon be famous! However, Wolf is going to find out that celebrity is not for everyone. (Topic: Occupations, Arts)
So far, Noah seems to have three favourite titles from this series: The Wolf who Wanted to Change his Colour, The Wolf who Did Not Want to Walk Anymore, and The Wolf who Searched for a Girlfriend. The five books deal with very important themes, although I think Noah is too young to really understand them at the moment. He enjoys the stories, and I’m sure I can use them when he’s older, to discuss the themes of self-acceptance and humility for example, to him.
Picking his favourite book from the series
Last year, Noah started learning about colours, and is quite familiar with the commonly used ones, which is most likely why he likes reading The Wolf who Wanted to Change his Colour. I get him to identify the different colours that the Wolf tries on, as well as the various animals that he resembles after the colour changes, and he doesn’t seem to get tired of doing both. I think this is a good book to read with young children, especially if they are just learning about colours and animals, as it is more interesting than those simple picture books without any storyline, that just list the names of the colours and/or animals. In addition, as the Wolf tries out a different colour each day, children also get to learn the days of the week. This is something that Noah has been working on recently, so he tries to guess which day of the week is next, before turning the page.
Asking to read the Wolf before bed
Being a typical boy, Noah is intrigued by vehicles of all sorts, which is why he enjoys reading The Wolf who Did Not Want to Walk Anymore. The Wolf gets tired of walking, and decides to try various other forms of transportation over the course of a year, before finally deciding that he prefers his own two feet after all. Noah especially likes it when we get to the part where the Wolf gets seasick and turns green, because he gets to roll around on the bed a little, pretending to be on a ship like the Wolf. Parents of young children can use this book to teach them about different vehicles, as well as the months in a year. Like the previous book, this book also teaches one to be content with what he has, which many children (and even adults) struggle with.
The Wolf who Did Not Want to Walk Anymore
I was surprised when Noah asked to read The Wolf who Searched for a Girlfriend a few times, because honestly, preschoolers shouldn’t be looking for girlfriends, right? Well, just last week, as I was picking Noah up after school, he declared, “I like S a lot. I LOVE S!”, one of the three girls in his class. Haha. He obviously doesn’t understand the concept of falling in love, because after C read the book with him, Noah stood up, then fell down onto the bed, and said, “The Wolf fall down like that in love.” Ah, kids say the darndest things, don’t they?
Reading about love
Personally, I think the other two books, The Wolf who Loved Himself Too Much, and The Wolf who Wanted to be an Artist, touch on very important issues, that parents should discuss with their children.
The Wolf in The Wolf who Loved Himself too Much won the Big Bad Wolf competition at the expense of his friends, but thankfully, his friends go to his aid when he gets into trouble, and he learns the importance of friendship. Young children are often very self-centred, and if we don’t help them to manage this mindset, they might have difficulties making lasting friendships when they enter primary school.
Finally, The Wolf in The Wolf who Wanted to be an Artist is easily influenced by others when it comes to his own career choice, and tries out different artistic roles, before realising that he can actually sing very well. I liked that the book ended with the Wolf finding his true passion, yet realising for himself that he doesn’t want to be a celebrity, because fame shouldn’t be the driving force behind one’s choices. In real life, we don’t have the option of trying out numerous jobs within a short period of time, so I think it is important that we help our children to identify their real areas of interest, rather than push them into something that they are not interested in.
The Wolf series is suitable for children of a rather wide range of ages, as there are many different teaching points in each book, targeted at different age groups. I plan to re-visit this series of books again when Noah is older, and better able to appreciate the more complex issues raised.
Buy the Books from Wild Crane Press
The Wolf (Series) SGD 48 (Usual Price: SGD 60)
The Wolf who Wanted to Change his Colour SGD 10.36 (Usual Price: SGD 12.95)
The Wolf who Loved Himself Too Much SGD 10.36 (Usual Price: SGD 12.95)
The Wolf who Searched for a Girlfriend SGD 10.36 (Usual Price: SGD 12.95)
The Wolf who Did Not Want to Walk Anymore SGD 10.36 (Usual Price: SGD 12.95)
The Wolf who Wanted to be an Artist SGD 10.36 (Usual Price: SGD 12.95)
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