Mum Goes to Work by Libby Gleeson, illustrated by Leila Rudge (Walker Books)
HC RRP $24.95
Reviewed by Anastasia Gonis
It’s morning. The childcare centre is a-buzz with activity as parents drop of their children and head off to work. Lunchboxes and backpacks are handed over. Hugs are exchanged and goodbyes said. It’s the most hectic time of day because mum goes to work.
But where do mums go? What work occupies them all day between dropping off and picking up their little ones again? What’s more, what do children do throughout the day while their mums work at all these important roles? We get a look into the lives of so many different mums at work or study, juxtaposed with all the activities that fill a child’s day at childcare.
This book is ideal for children from 3 years old and up will be entertainment for every child that has asked their mum what she does at work. Maybe they can find their mum’s job among the many here. Mums also get an overview of their child’s hours away from them.
Themes cover learning skills, the importance of play, friendship, interaction with others and more. The entire book is alive with curiosity and discovery due to the detailed illustrations and their layout. These are beautifully designed and presented, and created by mixed media, including watercolour, coloured pencil and collage. The end pages are eye-catching. These too, can be a source of name-the-picture play.
Mum, Goes to Work should be in all homes with children, schoolrooms and libraries. It will generate lively discussion between adult and child about working mothers in general and their roles, particularly in classes of pre-schoolers and first graders.