In a remote community at Canteen Creek, a bunch of mischievous animals are causing havoc, but the cheeky dogs that live there refuse to chase the animals away! The dogs just watch as horses steal their lunch, camels drink their water, and donkeys eat Grandpa’s pants. But when the big storms start, the animals go crazy, and finally the mayhem is all too much for the lazy dogs. They chase all the animals away – but will the animals stay away for long?
This book is full of fun, humour and mischief. Children will delight in the antics of the animals as the seasons change, and will enjoy the sense of rhythm and repetition throughout the narrative. The text also invites young readers to join in with questions about what is happening in the illustrations.
The illustrations emanate warmth and humour – a young audience will delight in the double page spread which shows buffalo riding in a shopping trolley and a bike, among various other crazy antics. Children can be encouraged to attempt to identify the seasons as they change throughout the story, and to observe how the change in seasons also impacts on the behaviours of the animals.
This book would be perfect to use in a story time session and can be utilised to encourage conversation about geography and place, the changing of the seasons, and the specific nature of the seasons in the top end of Australia.
Books such as this allow children in remote communities to develop a strong sense of place and identity through observing their experiences reflected in the story they are reading.
‘Go Home, Cheeky Animals!’ is a follow-up to ‘Too Many Cheeky Dogs!’ also by Johanna Bell and Dion Beasley.
Artist Dion Beasley is an Alywarr man who lives in Tennant Creek in the Northern Territory. His father's country is Owairtilla, also known as Canteen Creek, and his mother's country is Alpurrurulam, also known as Lake Nash.
Related title: Too Many Cheeky Dogs