Saturday, October 9, 2010

Handa's Surprise

Handa's Surprise by Eileen Browne is one of my favourite books to use with young children. It is a story so luscious it seems almost edible!Handa puts seven delicious fruits in a basket to take to her friend, Akeyo. But as she walks, carrying the basket on her head, various creatures steal her fruits. A monkey takes the banana, an ostrich the guava, a zebra the orange, an elephant the mango, a giraffe the pineapple, an antelope the avocado and a parrot the passion fruit. Handa walks on, wondering which of the fruits her friend will like best, oblivious to the fact that her basket is now empty. But then, behind her, a goat charges into a tangerine tree and fills Handa's basket with the fruit. "Hello, Akeyo," she greets her friend. "I've brought you a surprise." But when she lifts off her basket, it's Handa who gets the biggest surprise. Akeyo, meanwhile, is delighted, because tangerines are her favourite fruit!I have been doing lots of activities to do with this book with Master 2 and Master 4 as I'm trying to expose them to a variety of fruits, like most young children they tend to want the same over and over again!

We set out this morning (in the rain!!) to the Farmer's Market to source out some exotic fruits so the boys could try some new tastes and also we could use them for our storytelling and role-play.

I love making masks to act out and role-play stories with the boys. I found once I started collecting and making masks you quickly get yourself a great collection that can be used for many different stories.

We had some ripe banana's in our fridge so decided to make a banana cake for our morning tea. I like using cooking as a way to get the boy's to work together, and particularly learn to take turns!

While our banana cake was cooking for morning tea we had some fun thumb painting to make a pineapple. Both boys really enjoyed this painting activity and the end product looks cute.


  1. Thank you for sharing so much of your passion, knowledge, joy and creativity! I am a big fan. AND I love this book! and I have a little penchant for pineapples so I love the pineapple paintings. Look forward to more great blogs.

  2. can you tell me where to find the great masks that you have used? is there a pattern somewhere? thanks! gayle

  3. I read the book. And it was beautiful :)

  4. Hello! I´ve discovered your blog looking for information about this book. I´m a teacher from Spain and I usually use books in my classes. You are doing a great job ! thanks for sharing your ideas.