一片叶子落下来 (The Fall of Freddie the Leaf) is a beautiful, nature-inspired story about friendship and changing seasons in life and death. The simple-appearing picture book has a deeper meaning that children and adults of all ages can appreciate.
一片叶子落下来 (The Fall of Freddie the Leaf)
Title: 一片叶子落下来 (The Fall of Freddie the Leaf: A Story of Life for All Ages)
Author: 利奥·巴斯卡利亚 (Leo Buscaglia)
Age level: All ages (preferably 5+)
Where to buy:
- Simplified Chinese / ISBN: 9787544269629
- Traditional Chinese / ISBN: 9787544269629
- English / ISBN: 9780943432892
Audio Narration: You can hear this story in Mandarin Chinese on Ximalaya FM here!
一片叶子落下来 (The Fall of Freddie the Leaf): Book Review
We recently traveled to see family for birthday celebrations as well as a funeral service for husband’s grandmother. This poignant story, 一片叶子落下来 (The Fall of Freddie the Leaf), is so fitting for the season.
A leaf, Freddie, and his friends experience the delicate balance between life and death. The leaves enjoy the beauty of spring, summer, and autumn.
However, as winter approaches, the leaves experience cold and wind. They begin to fear the inevitable: the end of life when they fall to the snowy ground.
Freddie’s best friend, Daniel, says:
We all fear what we don’t know, Freddie. It’s natural, yet, you were not afraid when Spring became Summer. You were not afraid when Summer became Fall. They were natural changes. Why should you be afraid of the season of death?
Daniel is first to falls off the tree and says goodbye to Freddie with a smile. Freddie is the last leaf remaining on the tree and feels comfortable when he eventually lands in the snow.
Fall of Freddie the Leaf: English and Chinese versions
I don’t normally have books in multiple languages but this one was worth getting in both Chinese and English.
Please note that the cover is very different between these language versions. However, the images appear the same in both versions: a few simple leaf illustrations and photographs of real trees at different times of the year.
Images from 一片叶子落下来 (The Fall of Freddie the Leaf)
Fall of Freddie the Leaf Book-inspired activity
The first two times that we listened to the story, my daughter spent the whole time trying to figure out which leaf was Freddie and his friends!
Since the images are sparse mostly photos of trees, my daughter was not used to reading a book without distinct images of the characters. It was really interesting that that was so important for her to sort out!
To understand the characters and their dialogue, we wrote the Chinese names of some of the characters (Freddie, Daniel, and Claire) on the leaves. This is a hands-on way to bring the story’s characters to life.
While reading the story, we would use the leaves to identify who was speaking and how they felt. (Please note that I should have made Daniel the biggest leaf to reflect the story’s description.)
LEAF & NATURE ACTIVITY INSPIRATION
一片叶子落下来 (The Fall of Freddie the Leaf) reminded me of a recent conversation on Instagram between two of my favorite bloggers:
Happy Tot Shelf: (In reference to a framed nature leaf display) “Love this! How did you get the leaves to maintain their lovely colors?”
Mother Natured: “They haven’t, they’re fading. Slowly but they are. Eventually they will go brown. I’m fine with that though. I love that it changes every day. It’s important to me that they eventually biodegrade too. Everything in nature comes to an end.”
OTHER CHINESE CHILDREN’S BOOKS ABOUT DEATH AND BEREAVEMENT
- 最亲爱的奶奶 (Dearest Grandma) – A child says goodbye to her beloved grandmother
- 满月 (Full Moon) – A story about a young orphan who is loved by her adopted family
- 我永远爱你 (I Will Always Love You) – A child grows and bonds with his pet dog until he passes away
BOOKS ABOUT TREES AND AUTUMN
Chinese audiobooks for kids
For free Chinese audiobooks for children, check out:
- Free Chinese Audiobooks for Children on Ximalaya 喜马拉雅
- How to Use Ximalaya FM When You Can’t Read Chinese
HANDS-ON LEARNING ACTIVITIES WITH LEAVES
Check out these educational literacy activities that you can do with leaves!
- Autumn Leaf Painting & Chinese Literacy
- Chinese Thanksgiving Activity: Make a Turkey with Leaves
- Writing Chinese With Fall Leaves
- Fine Motor Math Activity with Hole-Punched Leaves!
RECOMMENDED ARTICLES ABOUT HOW TO TEACH KIDS CHINESE
If you need tips on how to teach your child Chinese, these posts are for you!
- Teach Your Child a Second Language at Home with 5 Key Steps
- How To Get Your Child To Speak the Minority Language
- Raising Multilingual Children as a Non-Fluent Parent
- 10 Ways to Get Your Child to Read Throughout the Day
- 6 Fun Ways to Assess Reading Comprehension With Kids!