The Best Little Knitter in the West
Sermsah Bin Saad
Magabala Books, 2000
5-8yrs, Lower Primary, Primary
AC Links/EYLFEYLF1, EYLF2, EYLF3, EYLF4, EYLF5, ACELT1575, ACELT1783, ACELT1580, ACELT1831, ACAVAM106, ACAVAR109
EYLF1, EYLF2, EYLF3, EYLF4, EYLF5, ACELT1575, ACELT1783, ACELT1580, ACELT1831, ACAVAM106, ACAVAR109, ACELT1582, ACELT1584, ACELT1587, ACELT1589, ACELT1591, ACELT1591, ACPPS024 , ACELT1594, ACELT1596, ACELT1599, ACAVAM110 , ACAVAR113, ACPPS042, ACELA1498, ACELT1602, ACELT1603, ACELT1605, ACELA1502, ACELT1608, ACELT1609, ACELT1610, ACELT1612, ACAVAM114, ACAVAR117, ACPPS051, ACPPS060, ACELA1518, ACELT1613, ACELT1614
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- Gender roles
- Stories in rhyme
Ethel is a proud knitting woman who can’t believe there is a man, George, who can knit better than the rest of the knitting circle. Until she hears the extraordinary story of how George saved the day by catching a wanted robber. All with the help of his knitting, of course.
This picture book with rhyming elements is framed as a story within a story. Ethel’s incredulity provides gentle comedy. Her friend, Elsa, admonishes her, conveying the overt moral, that crime doesn’t pay, without appearing overly didactic to the child reader. The more covert moral, that you shouldn’t exclude people from activities according to stereotypes, is also conveyed in a non-didactic way.
Bright, coloured pencil illustrations add a naive art style to the story, enhancing its sense of the absurd. This is particularly effective on pages 20-21, where the robber is caught in the dark and magically tied up. The author is a Nyikina man, born in Port Hedland in 1977. The illustrator is a Nyikina woman from the Kimberley.
- ABC Radio National interview: Browning, Daniel ‘Deadly brother boy: Sermsah bin Saad’ AWAYE! Radio National. 5 Sep 2009. https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/awaye/deadly-brother-boy-sermsah-bin-saad/3670124
- This Picture Book Life website. '16 picture books with knitting and yarn'. 8 Aug 2018. http://thispicturebooklife.com/18-picture-books-with-yarn-and-knitting/
- You Tube, R J Knits. 'How to knit .' https://youtu.be/p_R1UDsNOMk
- Deadly Vibe website. 'Dancing with Destiny Semsah Bin Saad' https://www.deadlyvibe.com.au/2008/07/dancing-with-destiny-sermsah-bin-saad/
- Magabala Books. Illustrator biography. https://www.magabala.com/collections/samantha-cook
- Abad, Carla and Pruden, Shannon. ‘Do storybooks really break children’s gender stereotypes?’ Front. Psychol. 24 December 2013. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00986/full