Sun Mother Wakes the World: An Australian Creation Story

Sun Mother Wakes the World: An Australian Creation Story

At the beginning of the world, it was dark and silent and nothing stirred anywhere, until a voice roused the sleeping Sun Mother in the sky, telling her it was time to wake up all the creatures of the earth.The indigenous people of Australia believe that their first ancestors created the world and its laws. They also believe that the world is still being created in a continual process they call The Dreamtime. Renowned storyteller Diane Wolkstein has crafted a powerful retelling of an Australian creation story, illuminated by illustrator Bronwyn Bancroft's authentic, beautifully realized paintings.

Reviews of the Sun Mother Wakes the World: An Australian Creation Story

The storytelling begins in darkness and introduces Sun Mother, whose light awakens earth and its creatures. As new creatures wake from the corners of the world, they come to rely on Sun Mother for the happiness she creates through plant and animal life.

Title: Sun Mother Wakes the World: An Australian Creation Story Author: Diane Wolkstein Illustrator: Bronwyn Bancroft Genre: Myth Theme(s): Australian folklore, creation, Australian aborigines, nature, day and night Opening line/sentence: The indigenous people of Australia believe that their first ancestors created the world and its laws. However, Sun Mother creates Moon and Morning Star to give living things light at night, and the Sun Mother promises to return each day to provide light for the earth. Dealing with the explanation of day and night, the characteristics of Australian animals, and the beginnings of human life, this story is illustrated with vibrant paintings by an artist with Aboriginal roots. Response to Two Professional Reviews: This creation story was applauded for its vibrant illustrations done in paint, and both reviewers mentioned how powerfully the colors represented Aboriginal tradition. Even though this story explains how day and night came to exist, I think the reviewers overlooked the fact that there are other creation explanations within the story, such as when the Sun Mother gave the animals a chance to change their bodies. I would want to go in depth about the Aboriginal culture and traditions by reviewing what they believe in by reading their creation beliefs on the first page of the book.

Goodreads #10 Summary: This book is a folklore about the beliefs of the indigenous people of Australia. The book tells the story of Sun Mother who woke up one day and woke the rest of the world. Then the next day she returned and the animals began to not worry every night when the Sun Mother would leave them. Once the animals were happy the Sun Mother created something new, she created the moon and starts that would give light during the night. At first hearing these new beliefs made me wonder how people could believe something different than what I had grown up with.

I love that this book makes it easier for children to understand the concept of 24 hours in a day and when we are awake or asleep.

Title: Sun Mother Wakes the World An Australian Creation Story Author: Diane Wolkstein Illustrator: Bronwyn Bancroft Genre: Myth Theme: Creation, nature, day and night Opening line/sentence: The indigenous people of Australia believe that their first ancestors created the world and its laws. Brief Book Summary: Sun Mother came down from the sky and brought light and life to the earth. In the end, she creates Moon and Morning Star to give the animals light at night. With each step she took, grass, plants, and trees sprouted in her footprints." When her work is complete, Sun Mother returns to the sky, coming back to earth each day to light the daytime hours. Professional Recommendation/Review #2: Gillian Engberg (Booklist, Apr. 15, 2004 (Vol. 100, No. 16)) In spare, rhythmic words, veteran folklorist Wolkstein retells an Aboriginal Australian creation myth that begins "when the earth was asleep." When a "soft voice" tells Sun Mother that it's time, she travels to Earth, leaving a wide path of lush greenery and vibrant animal life in her footsteps. There is also a main character, Sun Mother, but we are also introduced to animals, Moon, and Morning Star.

Title: Sun Mother Wakes the World Author: Diane Wolkstein Illustrator: Bronwyn Bancroft Genre: Myth Theme(s): Creation story, Australian Indigenous culture Opening line/sentence: The Indigenous people of Australia believe that their first ancestors created the world and its laws. Professional Recommendation/Review #1: Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, March 1, 2004 (Vol. 72, No. 5)) In this more-or-less tranquil creation myth from Australia, Sun Mother, wakened by an unidentified parent, in turn wakes the Earth's animals, gives them new shapes after they become dissatisfied with what they already have, then gives birth to the Moon and Morning Star, who produce the first humans. Dealing with the explanation of day and night, the characteristics of Australian animals, and the beginnings of human life, this story is illustrated with vibrant paintings by an artist with Aboriginal roots. Response to Two Professional Reviews: This story of creation is certainly eye-opening, because it tells a tale that is not often heard.

Sun Mother Wakes the World tells the story of how the sun came to the Earth. I think this book could be used as a good compare and contrast activity for students to see how different creation myths depict the start of the Earth, the Sun, plants, animals, etc. I would be careful though, because I could see some students wanting to start conversations about what their particular religion says about the creation of plants, animals, and the first humans.

This book is called Sun Mother Wakes the World. When Sun Mother wakes the world she then returns to the sky and visits the animals every day. Sun Mother came back down to the earth and told each animal to choose wisely what they wanted, because they would be that way for a long time. Now that the animals were happy, Sun Mother returned to the sky and gave birth to twins.

Diane Wolkstein adapts a beautiful creation myth in her childrens book Sun Mother Wakes the World, illustrated by Brownyn Bancroft. The land and animals gets scared of the darkness and are relieved when Sun Mother returns in the morning. Later, Moon and Morning Star has twins, Woman and Man. After their birth, Sun Mother returns and tells the twins their responsibilities while living on earth.

As New York's official storyteller, Wolkstein visited two of the city's parks each weekday, staging hundreds of one-woman storytelling events. The children would just go somewhere else if they didn't like it." She also had a radio show on WNYC, Stories From Many Lands, from 1968 until 1980, and she helped create the Storytelling Center of New York City.

  • English

  • Childrens

  • Rating: 3.87
  • Pages: 32
  • Publish Date: March 30th 2004 by HarperCollins
  • Isbn10: 0688139167
  • Isbn13: 9780688139162