Book Talk: The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister

Essay by texy October 2004

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The Rainbow Fish copyright in 1992 is a twenty-six page fiction hardback trade book written by Marcus Pfister, it is also available in paperback, library bind and audiocassette. The Rainbow Fish is about one of the most beautiful fish in the ocean that refuses to share his most prized possession, his iridescent scales with the other fish. When his greed leaves him without friends or admirers, the lonely fish seeks advice from a wise octopus, who counsels him to give away his beauty and discover how to be happy. What will he do, share his scales or keep them? The fish relentlessly gives all the other fish one of his iridescent scales. Although he is left with just one iridescent scale, he realizes the happiness he receives from sharing and in return the pleasure of making friends.

I recommend The Rainbow Fish for kindergarten and first grade students. This book can be incorporated into science lessons as an attention getter and an introduction to different science units.

Some units this book can be used in are the ocean, sorting and classifying, how different living species eat and survive, physical characteristic differences among living species, the diverse habitats of living species, the color spectrum, the weather (rainbows), and even sound. In addition, these topics require skills and concepts that apply to the T.E.K.S requirements for kindergarten and first grade science. This book could also be used near the end of the school year when the students become weary as a recap of what they have learned and remind them of their manners and kind attitudes they are expected to display, which is the main concept of The Rainbow Fish.