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Read this one for the 2020 Reading Women Challenge (read a picture book written/illustrated by a BIPOC author)
The Day You Begin is a back-to-school story that highlights the initial discomfort of being the new kid in unfamiliar classroom. Rafael Lopez's vibrant and imaginative art pairs wonderfully author Jacqueline Woodson's lyrical prose to create a book with a heartfelt message that celebrates differences and the importance letting others into your world.
This is a great picture book for younger elementary-aged kids who are experiencing a tough transition, such as being the new kid in town. Lovely illustrations. Necessary message. We are more alike than we realize until we open ourselves up to others.
There is something for everyone in this book, because every child is bound to feel "different" at some point in their lives. Woodson's prose is gentle yet wrought with emotion as she examines various external and internal reasons that a child may feel alone and outside of the group. She tells the reader that commonalities can be found among people who seem to have nothing in common, while the beautiful art by Lopez emphasizes the beauty of differences unified by the common experience of humanity. A lovely read!
A lovely book about acceptance (self and peer) in the context of school, though it could be generalized to anywhere you are the 'new' person. Beautifully illustrated and explained by author Jacqueline Woodson, this title is a good read aloud for the 1st week or month of school. It would also be a good complement to the book 'I Am Enough' by Grace Byers.
Beautiful, sad, hopeful: 3 words that come to mind with this picture book. Children will relate to the first person narrative, the classroom setting, and expressive illustrations. Adults will relate to their own experiences either as an outsider kid or remembering the kid that was in their elementary school days. As an adult reader, I had a moment of tears reading this beautiful book. It presents a powerful message about the importance of valuing each person's perspective on life and being kind, especially to people who need an extra boost of kindness.
A beautifully illustrated book that combines the talents of award winner Jacqueline Woodson and illustrator Rafeal Lopez. This book speaks about how you might feel like you are the only one in a room who looks a certain way or eats a certain thing. Eventually, by telling your story and sharing your life, you might find someone who is secretly like you. A great read for both individuals and groups.
The Day You Begin is so incredibly beautiful. It took me some time to actually finish that first read-through, just savoring the words and pictures.
The Poet she is, Jacqueline Woodson’s latest picture book could withstand a lesser illustrator. Conversely, you could read The Day You Begin without reading a word. Together Woodson and Lopez craft a powerful narrative.
The message is one that emerges from an empathetic voice. You may feel the difference, and you may not feel ready to embrace your difference by putting your name to it, to claim it out loud, but a time will come when you are ready and you’ll find that "all at once, in the room where no one else is quite like you, / the world opens itself up a little wider / to make some space for you."
The Day You Begin tackles uncertainty by being certain about how beautiful and capable each child is. That each voice, each story (told in so many ways) is precious. As with Angelina, it took time, “your voice / stronger than it was a minute ago,” but once you see what happens…
A thoughtful, lovely picture book about the awkwardness of being the one who is “different” in a school class and how you get past it. Jacqueline Woodson is a four-time Honor Book winner for the Newbery Award for best children’s book, and I personally think she is the most accomplished author never to win the actual award.
I will just quote the first two lines. “There will be times when you walk into a room and no one there is quite like you. Maybe it will be your skin, your clothes, or the curl of your hair.”
After that first sentence, my 8-year-old granddaughter said, “Just like me.” Anyone can relate to that feeling. It’s a fine book, well-written to be read aloud to individual children or groups.
A beautiful lyrical book about the challenges kids face when they feel different than everyone else.
Jacqueline Woodson can write no wrong in my eyes. I always feel connected to her words and this picture book is no different. It made me feel like she lovingly wrapped her arms around me and reminded me that there is no one in the world like me, there will never be, and that is an amazingly beautiful gift.
Pure warmth. A picture book about unbelonging when "all that stands beside you is your own brave self," and the moment that "the world opens itself a little wider to make some space for you."