Plenty of Love to Go Around by Emma Chichester Clark is a thoughtful and heartwarming book about sharing your love. Plum is a dog that is known as the “special one” to his owners Emma and Rupert. Their next door neighbors, Sam and Gracie love Plum and view him as their “best one and only”. Plum feels loved all over and special until one day, there a surprise. Gracie is holding a cat named Binky! Since cats are not Plum’s favorite, he tries to ignore, hide and even run away from the cat. Binky follows Plum around and is loved by Sam and Gracie. Plum does not feel like the one and only anymore. He begins to feel jealous of all of the attention that Binky is receiving because he doesn’t feel special anymore. Plum wonders, “Is there enough love to go around?” After leaving Binky outside in the rain, his owner, Emma explains to Plum that we can love many people and have plenty of love to go around. Plum opens his heart and mind to Binky and becomes even happier and more loved as a result. He finds a wonderful friendship with Binky that he didn’t think could exist at first.
I love this book because it can help teach a child many valuable lessons. Although this book is about the feelings of a dog towards a cat, it can also be related to siblings within a family. The feeling of jealousy can be difficult to explain to a young child, but can be discussed more easily when using this book. Specific language concepts such as expanding vocabulary, answering “wh” questions, discussing emotions and sequencing can be targeted when reading this book. Here are some discussion questions that I created to help stimulate conversation about the book over mealtime.
- What does “the one and only” mean?
- Tell me how Plum feels when he is introduced to Binky.
- Tell me why Plum run away and tried to hide from Binky.
- Discuss how Binky felt towards Plum throughout the book.
- What did Plum learn from Binky?
- Have you ever felt like Plum? Tell me about it.
- What does “show off” mean?
- Have you ever become friends with someone that you didn’t like at first?
- How did Plum feel when he left Binky outside in the rain?
- What does it mean when Plum’s heart “felt it getting bigger and bigger”?
Do you want to discuss jealousy more? Check out this article on jealousy by Kids Health.
Emma Chichester Clark is the author and illustrator of Plenty of Love to Go Around. She is also the author of numerous other picture books such as Love is My Favorite Thing and the Blue Kangaroo series. To learn more about the author, check out her blog, Plumdog.