Read The Family Tree by David McPhail Online


A man in the 1800s comes upon a beautiful forest and decides to build his home there. When he clears the land, he leaves one special tree to grace his front yard. Over the years, several generations of his family enjoy this tree, but it is endangered by a plan to build a highway. A young boy and his host of animal friends get together to make a stand, and give back to theA man in the 1800s comes upon a beautiful forest and decides to build his home there. When he clears the land, he leaves one special tree to grace his front yard. Over the years, several generations of his family enjoy this tree, but it is endangered by a plan to build a highway. A young boy and his host of animal friends get together to make a stand, and give back to the tree which has given them so much.With lavish illustrations and very few words, David McPhail delivers a timeless environmental message and a heartwarming story for ages 4 to 8....

Title : The Family Tree
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780805090574
Format Type : PDF
Number of Pages : 40 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Family Tree Reviews

  • Melissa
    2019-05-12 20:02

    David McPhail is awesome and his illustrations have a quiet centeredness to them that really works for this story. I liked the passage of time in the first half of the book but the second half worked less well for me. I'm torn between wanting to introduce concepts such as environmentalism and activism on a child-appropriate level and also wanting to represent the world accurately to children: I am too much a cynic to believe that any road is going to be diverted just because a child says so, and as a result my reaction to this is, "Oh, please." I understand about compressing events and telegraphing narrative arcs. I understand that the suggestion to children that they can have an impact on their lives and surroundings is probably all that is called for here. But where is the middle ground between this particular deliberately naive story and a didactic depiction of dry but effective protests at zoning board and city council meetings? And where did those animals come from? Would it have been more logical and consistent for the story if the descendants of the original settler and their neighbors had rallied to the cause instead of the until-now completely absent gentle animals of the forest? File this one under "Mel Is Too Picky."

  • Michelle McBeth
    2019-04-30 22:47

    A man goes to a new land to build a home. He clears the land, but keeps one tree as shade for his home. Several generations grow up in the home and the tree remains. But progress happens. A road is built in front of the home. One day they plan to widen the road to make a highway. The tree must come down. The youngest child of the generations protests. Animals come to help him protest. The builders decide to reroute the road and time goes on.The illustrations are quite lovely watercolor and ink. They are full of color and nice details.The story of the tree watching generations grow up underneath it was wonderful, but McPhail lost me when he decided to twist the story and add a fantasy element to this realistic story. How is it that, because the boy decides to protest the cutting down of the tree, the animals all come to help? This made no sense to me and changed the flavor of the story. I felt I was watching a story unfold about a family. It would have felt more natural to me if the family and the community helped the boy instead.Advertized for ages 4-8 which is about right.

  • Chelsea
    2019-05-18 20:04

    This book had great illustrations. It made kids start thinking about family traditions. The tree meant a lot to the great great grandfather, and that carried throughout the generations.

  • Cecilia
    2019-05-14 00:37

    I loved the time progression in this one. It was very well done.

  • Lola Volkova
    2019-05-12 19:34

    This is the book that leads me to David Mcphail.

  • Richie Partington
    2019-04-29 18:53

    Richie's Picks: THE FAMILY TREE by David McPhail, Henry Holt, March 2012, 32p., ISBN: 978-0-8050-9057-4"Far past the frozen leavesThe haunted, frightened trees"--Bob Dylan"He chopped down trees to make fields for his crops and pastures for his animals. But he left one tree standing. It would provide shade for his house during the long hot summers and act as a buffer against the chilly winter winds."The squirrel from David McPhail's MOLE MUSIC is back! Or maybe it's that squirrel's great-great-grandfather (or great-great-grandson). Who knows? The nature of squirrels means that you can accumulate quite a few generations of them in a brief number of years.But that is not so with the nature of trees, at least not in one's human lifetime. I've just moved back east this week. I've left behind the redwoods of Armstrong Woods (where you can touch and peer up at a tree that was growing back in the days of the real King Arthur) and have now become a new face in the town whose name comes up when you google "Borough of Trees." That moniker, and the lines of mature trees gracing its avenues, are definitely a big part of what attracts me to this place.From the apple tree that overhung my swing when I was a munchkin on Long Island, to the Gravenstein apple trees that I raised up from skinny little treelets on my farm in Sebastopol, I've had a life-long love affair with trees. That they are the lungs for our planet is just icing on the proverbial cake."The boy protested. He stood between the workers and tree, and would not budge."THE FAMILY TREE ties in with David McPhail's recent gem NO! as much as it relates to MOLE MUSIC. For just as with the young character in NO!, who demands loudly an end to the never-ending insanity of war and strife, here, you have a young character (with a swing under a tree) demanding an end to the endless paving over of paradise and the related cutting down of our planet's respiratory system. In THE FAMILY TREE, that process is represented by a tree that was left standing by the boy's ancestor who, long ago, established a farmstead on this land. Now, in wanting to widen the adjacent road, the highway engineers figure to cut down that grand old tree. And with the magic that makes me love David McPhail, "A call for assistance went out," and a corps of woodland animals large and small arrives. These creatures -- moose, bear, wolf, and raccoon -- take up positions around the boy and his dog, and together they force the highway engineers to plan an alternative route that spares the tree.Having recently had my eyes opened to the obscenely destructive mining practice of mountaintop removal (in SAME SUN HERE), I am so happy to find a book that brings it down to a personal level, a story that is sure to cause some kid somewhere to say "Wait a minute!" when he or she next hears about or sees a grand old tree about to fall senselessly. Richie Partington, MLISRichie's Picks http://[email protected]

  • Andi Martineau
    2019-04-20 00:58

    The Family Tree is about a man long ago who moves into a new area. He cuts down many trees to build a new house and make a pasture for his cattle. The man however leaves one tree standing that he comes to love. As time goes on he has a family and his boys have a family. Many years later his great-great-grandson is now living on the farm and has also fallen in love with the tree. One day workers come to cut the tree down so that they can build a new road. The little boy protests and soon the road is built around the tree instead of cutting it down. The artistic medias used in the book are colored pencil and water color. I specifically liked how the artist used hatching and crosshatching to make many different shadows throughout the book. Also, the colored pencil allowed the artist to show many emotions by the amount of detail each page had on it.

  • Jazmyne Henry
    2019-05-20 00:40

    This is a fiction story of a little boy who unites with his animal friends for a good cause. When the tree that has been in his family for generations is going to be cut down, The young boy protests with his animal friends to save the tree. In the end, the young boy and the construction workers create a plan that works for everyone. As a Literacy teacher I would use this text on Earth Day or Arbor Day to show the importance of the environment. The students can also use this text to find out what is important in their own families. The author/illustrator does a very good job in using onomatopoeia and the pictures tell the story perfectly. This story shows the importance of family, traditions, and keeping them alive. The author’s cultural background doesn’t quite relate but he does have a big family and strong family values.

  • Tasha
    2019-05-10 17:52

    This is the story of a very special tree. It was left standing when the rest of the space was cleared to build a house many years ago. This tree would shelter the little house. It witnessed many changes over the years as horse and wagon changed to cars. There were births and deaths on the farm, until finally it was the great-great grandson of the original building of the home who lived there. The tree still stood, strong and straight. But then it was threatened as a new road was planned that would run right through it. The grandson refused to let the tree be cut down, and wild animals join him to keep it from happening. So the road plans must be changed and the tree continues to grow now by the large bend in the road.Read the rest of my review on my blog, Waking Brain Cells.

  • Nancy Kotkin
    2019-05-04 00:02

    While the previous generations are relevant to the story, they are background information; yet they consume half the pages of the book. We don't actually meet the protagonist until pg 20, and then his story is crammed into the remaining 20 pgs of this picture book. As a result, the story suffers.We do children a disservice to make them think that a small boy and a few forest animals can, without any sort of civil protest and due process, make builders re-route an entire highway. Not that I think municipal bureaucracy needs to be detailed in a picture book, but there isn't even a single mention of government involvement in the entire story. As far as I know, construction workers don't make decisions about where the roads go.

  • Traci Bold
    2019-05-02 23:57

    'The Family Tree' written and illustrated by David McPhail gets five stars because I love this story and I love trees. Too often, nature is taken for granted and that it horrible. In this book, David McPhail gets it right and shows us a poignant story of how anyone can stand up for their beliefs and at least by trying to save something, it could happen if you believe enough in the power to fight for what is right.Beautifully illustrated. Published by Henry Holt & Company.#PB #trees #nature #parents #family

  • Sam Gallagher
    2019-05-15 22:45

    The Family Tree is there for it all. It watches as a house is built in its shade and a family is raised and then another. Then the tree is about to be cut down, but the boy who loves it fights to save it. This book, illustrated beautifully in soft pastels and watercolor is a wonderful story. The illustrator does a marvelous job at portraying the time passing and changing the scenery while the tree remains constant. This would be an excellent book to use in a class room to talk about heritage and family trees.

  • Karen Arendt
    2019-05-15 00:36

    Charming story of a man who travels west in the late 1800s to build a house, leave the house and return with a wife, then raise his family there. As he is clearing the land, he leaves one tree standing for shade in the summer and protection from the wind in the winter. generations later, his descendants are sill living in the house and a great great grandchild protects the house from modernization. McPhail's illustrations are full of colorful browns, and greens with a solid white border around each double page spread.

  • Kristina Jean Lareau
    2019-04-30 22:43

    These watercolor and ink illustrations are typical of McPhail's style--well done and detailed. The book itself provides a great--albeit overdone--message. It immediately called to mind Gary Crew's and Shaun Tan's The Memorial as well as Virginia Lee Burton's The Little House. Either way, it is worth a read, though it doesn't cover any new ground.

  • Meghan
    2019-05-10 19:44

    This story is about a tree that is planted and how it serves various purposes throughout generations. Eventually, the tree is going to be cut down to widen the road that runs by the house. The little boy who lives in the house, the great-great grandson of the man who planted the tree does what he can to save the tree. Nearby forest animals come to the aid of the boy and the tree is saved to be enjoyed by future generations.

  • Nicole
    2019-05-19 20:44

    This book makes a little the same way that Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree does. We follow a family - and their favorite tree - through the years. When the highway needs to come through the area, a little boy and his animal friends save the tree...but then the tree is located directly next to a giant highway in the end. :(

  • Hope L. Justice
    2019-04-26 20:55

    If you're going to write a historical fiction picture book, don't end a very straight forward, heart warming story, with a boy surrounded by predators protecting a tree. I was on board with the plot until I saw this illustration. There was no "fantastical" mentions any where else in the book. It is sudden, and seemingly random, to end this way.

  • Dylan
    2019-04-23 19:42

    The art is lovely, and the narrative moves along, but it's rather painful and tortured. We're sad to see the pioneer cut down a forest (portrayed unremoursefully), and then meant to feel happy that one tree was saved? Saved by having a highway skirt it? A very sad tale of "progress," one that left my 5 yr old a bit conflicted. Can't blame her.

  • Bree
    2019-05-01 23:39

    I really wanted to like this book but I ended up skipping the words of the story and telling my own. It just was too much for my class without actually using a lot of words. I was bored with it and wished that this week when I read it wasn't so chaotic or else I would have read it ahead of time and realized that is was a no go before I started on it.

  • Julia Jasztal
    2019-05-18 21:57

    (Mommy's review from 5/12) This is okay but it's hardly worthy of 5 stars IMO. Julia liked it well enough but it's not wordy enough for either of us. We both agreed we really liked the subject, the little boy, what he does, etc. but the story just didn't deliver for us.

  • Kim Patton
    2019-05-18 00:03

    Shows the history of a tree from the time the land was settled through the years. Finally a young boy must save the tree when a roadway is going to be put where the tree stands. Beautiful illustrations and text that is easy to understand.

  • Rebecca Hochman
    2019-05-17 18:35

    This book has awesome illustration in it! The way the author uses the pen and ink adding a multiple of lines in this is amazing! It has a good lesson of tradition and starting something new. The colors in this are amazing! I would read this book to younger students.

  • Carol
    2019-05-03 16:37

    Another beautiful picture book by David McPhail, he never disappoints. I don't think I could do this one for story time because I'm not sure I can get through the part where old generations leave the family and the little boy is standing next to the grave without crying. Beautifully done!!!

  • Chris
    2019-04-26 17:48

    When I flipped through it I thought for sure my kids and I would be in tears as the boy defends his family tree from a new row expansion. We weren't. It didn't click for us on that level. Maybe it was a bit forced, or for me it was distracting having the word bubbles, and the regular text.

  • Peacegal
    2019-04-29 00:41

    In an era of the thoughtless plundering of natural resources, here is a voice in favor of valuing our natural history. This is a nice story to read for Arbor day, or simply to impart environmental values any day of the week.

  • Dimity Powell
    2019-05-01 00:45

    Miss 9 rated this one. Live and let live.

  • Elsa
    2019-05-14 18:43

    Very nice. I don't know why, but David McPhail's books always bring a little tear to my eye. :-)

  • Joseph Leiter
    2019-05-06 19:38

    The family tree tells a really good story to kids who like to think they can be on there own and what all it takes. I really recommend this book because kids will find it interesting.

  • Maimoona Albar
    2019-05-05 19:04

    The story connects children with the environment. I like how it shows that a child with friends' support can make a difference.The illustrations are colorful and it caught my attention.

  • Susan
    2019-04-25 20:41

    Another nice offering from David McPhail, a gentle story about generations passing and respect for who and what has come before around a story of the importance of saving an old tree.