The Great Wave

The Great WaveThis is the story of fishermen who are caught in a huge wave that deposits a baby into their arms. He grows up uncertain as to where he comes from or who his real parents are. A fish promises to help him answer his questions. When the boy finally becomes scared, the fish turns into a dragon and says that Naoki now knows that his “real” parents are the ones that raised him.
Veronique Massenot, Presetel, ©2011, 978-3-7913-7058-3

Using Similes

There are 7 different similes in the story that can be listed for students to describe what two elements are being compared:

  • The wave…like a giant creature opening its foamy mouth, greedily swallowing everything before it.
  • Heart beat more wildly than all the drums of the world together.
  • All his friends shot upwards, faster than bamboo.
  • His thoughts drifted…coming and going like the water’s ebb and flow.
  • It’s scales shimmered like silver.
  • The back of the fish lengthened and began to move like a wave.
  • The sea was as smooth as glass.

Ask students to re-write a portion of a recent piece they have written to include three original similes.

Inspired by a Painting

This book was inspired by the painting, The Great Wave of Kanagawa by Hokusai, which was part of a series of woodblock prints called 36 Views of Mount Fuji. In this painting, Mount Fuji is hidden by the wave. Why not choose some other prints from the same series, and ask students in groups to write a story using that picture as an inspiration?


For 9 more creative writing ideas, click The Great Wave to download.


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