We continue the Sinews Blog section dedicated to commentating children’s stories with our second reading, Lost and Found.
In this marvelous tale, Oliver Jeffers tells us the story of a boy who finds a penguin at the front door of his house. The penguin seems sad and the boy interprets this as him being lost.
Our boy decides to help him and starts an arduous search for the penguins origins
; he goes to the Lost and Found office, asks the birds, even his duck… however he does not find answers.
Finally the boy finds out that penguins are from the South Pole! He prepares a rowboat with all the things he and the penguin need and rows for days and nights in a long journey to bring the penguin home. On this trip, the boy tells stories to the penguin who proves to be an avid listener.
When they arrive to the South Pole, the boy is happy but the penguin seems sadder all the time. They say goodbye and when the boy rows home, he realizes that the penguin was not lost at all, but that he had felt alone and that is what made him feel sad. Therefor he decides to go back and look for him to offer his friendship.
In this precious story with beautiful and detailed illustrations, the author speaks to us fundamentally about friendship, the necessity of feeling accompanied by others and about loneliness. The boy assumes that the penguin has gotten lost but in reality he feels lonely which is why he looks for the company of the boy and follows him everywhere. In the time that they spend together on the boat, the penguin pays attention to the stories told by the boy, enjoying his company, his friendship and his care. It is in the final goodbye when he feels the most sad.
In this story we find not only moments of “lost” and “found,” but also that in reality there are many important moments: the initial meeting of the two, the beginning of their friendship, the search for the penguin’s origins and all of the moments they spend together, the final goodbye and the reunion that will forge their friendship.
In Lost and Found, the importance of each other’s company is evident- as much as to not feel lonely as to rid oneself of solitude. Friendship, the care that it implies and feeling accompanied by others are fundamental for maintaining our emotional well-being. Although we all need interaction with others, the interpersonal relationships in the case of children are fundamental for the development of sense of self. They learn important values such as loyalty, fidelity, healthy competition, love, and friendship- fundamental for their emotional development and as social subjects.
A deeper reading of this story can also lead us to think about the different occasions on which we offer others multiple solutions to their problems when what they truly need is to feel accompanied, that we are on their side and can count on our support.
Finally, I would like to touch on the beauty of the illustrations. While they may seem simple at first glance, they are full of colors and intense contrasts that, together with the text, transport us to the South Pole listening to the sound of the waves.
I hope that you and your children enjoy this marvelous story about friendship!
Number of pages: 32
Editorial: Harper Collins
Apt for: 3-7 years