Kids Fight Extinction by Martin Dorey is the third instalment in his excellent #2minutesuperhero eco-series for primary school children. Aimed at empowering young readers in the current environmental crisis, Dorey is here to tell us that we don’t need a caped crusader in a Batmobile to save the world. Everyday people making changes can be the heroes of this story. Jam-packed with cheerful illustrations and information, the book sets us an array of points-earning missions. Tot points up at the end and achieve Everyday Superhero stardom.
Dorey is an engaging taskmaster. Early on in proceedings, he makes a well-judged apology.
‘I’m sorry that it falls to your generation to do this important work, when a lot of my generation stood around and let it happen.’
With the elephant in the room addressed, he respectfully asks for the reader’s help. He tells us that in ‘normal’ times species go extinct for many different reasons but it’s the rate of extinction that’s scary now, about 1000 times higher than it should be, according to the World Wildlife Fund. From deforestation to food production via pollution, each topic is tackled and missions are set.
We begin in the garden, where creepy crawlies should be busy nourishing the soil and pollinating, instead of succumbing to toxic pesticides. Earn 10 points for spreading the word to family, neighbours, and even your local council. Build a bee hotel and get a buzz from receiving 50 Points.
Urge parents to make sustainable food choices at the supermarket, eschew fast fashion, cycle and recycle. Find your voice, ‘You have the right to have a say.’
For a respectable 20 points, budding activists could ask teachers to help organise an extinction assembly, and for the really driven, Dorey provides a letter template to write to the Prime Minister (a whopping 100 points).
Once scores are counted, readers can calculate their place on the superhero scale. Hurrah for the non-caped crusader!
If you like this, see Kids Fight Plastic by Martin Dorey.
Kids Fight Extinction by Martin Dorey is published by Walker Books, 128 pages.