Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Qantas strike as explained by a picture book

The Qantas strike has meant we are still on holidays in sunny Queensland, unable to fly home. Isn't that devastating - another day or two or three of holidays?

At the fabulous local bookshop here, I bought a picture book called "Click Clack Moo, Cows that Type" by Doreen Cronin. Intriguing title, isn't it? Farmer Brown has a problem - he has cows that can type demanding letters. And they have threatened to hold back their milk if their demands for electric blankets aren't met. And the cows are typing letters for the hens as well - the hens are witholding their eggs. Farmer Brown calls on Duck, a neutral party. There are more typed letters and negotiation until the terms are settled.

Can you guess where I'm going with this? Yes, you can use this story to explain the Qantas strike to kids! Unhappy workers (3 unions/cows and hens), demands (equal pay/electric blankets), strike action (cancelled flights/no milk or eggs) and neutral party (Duck aka Fair Work)... You can see the similiarities, can't you?

And after all that, it is just such a fun book to read aloud - Click clack moo, Click clack moo, Clickety clack moo!

Meanwhile, I'm just going to sit by the pool, read this story again to any of my kids who aren't in the water and wait for the cows and Farmer Brown to stop typing letters and sort our flights out ...