Please scroll down for our book review.
Anzac Ted is the powerful, poignant story of a little boy’s teddy bear that was passed down to him from his grandfather. Battered, torn, missing an eye and an ear, he might look scary but he’s got a great story to tell. For Anzac Tec went to war, keeping soldiers company and giving them comfort. And while he never won a medal, and now doesn’t even attract a single vote at classroom Toy Shows, if only everyone looked a little deeper:
‘They’d see a hero, plain as day
Who sits upon my bed.
A hero, who saved me and you.
His name … is Anzac Ted.’
While several children’s picture books cover the world wars, none has ever made the conflict so accessible to children by telling the story of a bear who went to war. Belinda’s exquisite watercolour illustrations combine with her rhyming text to create a book that, while perfect for parents and teachers to share with children, is also guaranteed to touch the heart of every adult.
Author: Belinda Landsberry is a children’s Author and Illustrator, and Mother to four kids of her own. She brings an ideal combination of talents to her work, having formerly trained as a Primary School Teacher and Graphic Designer. Anzac Ted is her first published book.
For ages: 5 to 8
Author: Belinda Landsberry
Our book review:
This is the perfect book for young children to learn about ANZAC Day. It is a story that children will be interested in, following the travels of a teddy bear.
The book has images that we all relate to the ANZACs, soldiers carrying their big rucksacks, the ANZAC hat, the ANZAC badge, the big newspaper headlines, the uniform, and old-style suitcases from that era. These items set the scene. We all associate these things with the ANZACs.
Something else that we associate with the ANZACs, which is a much harder thing to express to young children, is the ANZAC spirit. Their courage, loyalty, mateship, and determination. The bravery they showed, ready to protect the world from an evil force. Anzac Ted is an introduction to these concepts.
The story starts with a battered and dirty little teddy bear who has seen better days. He only has one eye! He just doesn’t seem to fit in, but he has a big story to tell. That story is about how he accompanied Grandpa Jack to the war. Grandpa left behind a wife and a baby son. Grandma packed the teddy bear for luck, to bring Grandpa home.
There is a mix of colour and sepia illustrations which help children to follow the story moving in and out of modern times and old times. Children will relate to packing a teddy bear in a suitcase or bag, when going off to grandma’s or relatives to stay. They will relate to the comfort a teddy bear brings to someone. After all, the teddy symbolises the warmth and love from home, and importantly, peace.
The last page in the book includes a brief history of the ANZACs for parents who may choose to share some of the information with their children. It is a hardcover book. For ages 5 to 8. There are teacher’s notes available for this book. A great book to use in the classroom.