March 8 – Happy Birthday, Kenneth Grahame

Posted on March 8, 2014

A motherless Scottish boy grew up at his grandmother's large but dilapidated house in England. The house was near a river, and this boy and his brother and sisters were able to explore the riverside and spacious grounds to their hearts' content.

That boy grew up to become the author of a children's classic—a book set on a river! In The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame's characters do what he liked to do: simply mess about in boats.

This drawing is by Dark Jimbo
of Deviant Art. 
The story of how the book was written is fairly typical. When Grahame, who was born on this date in 1859, was raising his own little boy, he moved back to the English town where he grew up. And every night, he would tell his son bedtime stories. It was those stories that he ended up writing down—and they became the novel that so many have loved so much.

To celebrate Mr. Grahame's birthday, read his most famous book, or perhaps his other children's novel, The Reluctant Dragon. Or watch the one of the many movies based on his book. 

  • Here is a map-making activity for the book.
  • And this looks like a beautiful coloring and activity book!

By the way, if you've ever been to Disneyland, the ride “Mr. Toad's Wild Ride” is based on the Disney movie version of The Wind in the Willows.

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