Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message

by Chief Jake Swamp (Author) Erwin Printup Jr (Illustrator)

Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message
Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade

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A traditional Iroquois celebration of the beauty and spirit of Mother Earth, as told by a contemporary Mohawk chief.

For as long as anyone can remember, Mohawk parents have taught their children to start each day by giving thanks to Mother Earth. Also known as the Thanksgiving Address, this good morning message is based on the belief that the natural world is a precious and rare gift. The whole universe - from the highest stars to the tiniest blade of grass - is addressed as one great family. Now readers of all ages can share in this tribute to the environment, adapted especially for children by Chief Jake Swamp, whose efforts to share this vision of thanksgiving take him all over the world. Chief Swamp's inspirational message, along with Erwin Printup, Jr.'s unforgettable landscapes, make Giving Thanks a timeless celebration of the spirit of nature.

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Publishers Weekly

"Simple, timeless language bears witness to the Native American reverence for the natural world," wrote PW of this Iroquois salute to Mother Earth. All ages. (Sept.)

Review quotes

Lovely and inspiring ... beautifully illustrated. — Light of Consciousness Magazine

The Thanksgiving Address... the haunting internal repetition and rhythm that mark many of the world's most affecting prayers. — The Horn Book Guide

(Children's Book Review Magazine) A powerful way of acknowledging the connectedness of the whole universe, this salute to Mother Nature is reverent and simple, filled with phrases that acknowledge our privilege and bounty to be human in this great world... The richness of the earth is colorfully depicted... from the vast to the sublime. — Children's Book Review

A simple, tender celebration of good fortune... Swamp has made the [Thanksgiving] address accessible to all ages... Printup deploys, apparently, all the colors in nature in rendering the serenely sleek, stylized illustrations. — Kirkus Reviews

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Chief Jake Swamp

Chief Jake Swamp (Tekaronianeken) was a founder of the Tree of Peace Society, an international organization promoting peace and conservation. Chief Swamp delivered the Thanksgiving Address throughout the world, as well as at the United Nations. He was born on the Akwesasne Mohawk Reservation in upstate New York, and lived in Hogansburg, NY where he worked as a cultural adviser for the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne's Child and Family Services. Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message was his first picture book. He passed away in October 2010.

Erwin Printup is a Cayuga/Tuscarora painter who received a degree in fine arts from the Institute of American Indian Art, in Santa Fe, NM. Born in Niagara Falls, he now lives in Lewiston, NY. Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message is his first picture book.

Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Lee & Low Books
Publication date
September 01, 1995
BISAC categories
JNF018040 - Juvenile Nonfiction | People & Places | United States - Native American
JNF026060 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Holidays & Celebrations | Thanksgiving
Library of Congress categories
Human ecology
Religious aspects
Mohawk Indians
Speeches, addresses, etc., Mohawk

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