Can You Say Peace?

Overview

Children everywhere wish for peace

International Peace Day is September 21. On this day and every day throughout the year, children all over the world wish for peace. Karen Katz takes readers on a bright and colorful journey around the globe to meet some of these children and learn about the many ways to say peace!

 

Karen Katz’s bright and childlike illustrations are the perfect way to introduce the very...

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Overview

Children everywhere wish for peace

International Peace Day is September 21. On this day and every day throughout the year, children all over the world wish for peace. Karen Katz takes readers on a bright and colorful journey around the globe to meet some of these children and learn about the many ways to say peace!

 

Karen Katz’s bright and childlike illustrations are the perfect way to introduce the very young to the concept of peace and teach them how to say the word in twenty-two different languages.

Can You Say Peace? is a 2007 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"With vibrantly colored patterns softened by soothing rhythmic lines ... this timely primer on nonviolence works in its simplicity."

Kirkus Reviews

 

"A great way to introduce multiculturalism to young readers."

The Oakland Journal

Children's Literature - Mary Hynes-Berry
As in her first book, Colors of Us, Karen Katz once again celebrates diversity in this colorful picture book. Classrooms and families do not need to wait for Peace Day on September 2 to explore how to say peace in eleven different languages and cultures. Parents or teachers can have a wonderful time with their preschoolers exploring sameness and difference in the architecture and activities shown in each spread. Meena, who says shanty, and her family in India are shown wearing saris and scarves as they prepare chapatis, while Claire calls out paix from her street in Paris with the Eiffel Tower looming overhead. Although these illustrations edge on stereotyping (wearing berets in France and chasing chickens and donkeys in Mexico), Katz' signature bright folk art style is very likely to appeal. While this book is not profound, it does offer a much needed message to the very young that saying "Peace" is something we need to do all over the world.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1-In celebration of the United Nations International Day of Peace on September 21, the author of The Colors of Us (Holt, 1999) delivers another delightful foray into diversity. One side of each spread features a lively scene from a particular country ("Meena lives in India"), while opposite, a close-up portrait shows a child who wishes readers peace in his or her own language: "Meena says shanti (SHAHN-tee)." The last few pages make the point that no matter where they live, all children want the same things, "to go to school, to walk in their towns and cities, to play outside-to share food with their families-and feel safe. No matter how we say it, we all want peace." The book closes with an outline world map with tiny images of the youngsters shown waving from their homelands, and a list of other words for peace. Created in collage and mixed media, the vivacious illustrations are filled with movement and energy. Katz's happy, round-faced characters and bold folk-art colors and patterns work beautifully to lighten up the message. A simple, buoyantly illustrated look at the wonderful variety of lifestyles across the globe and the similarities of children everywhere.-Shelley B. Sutherland, Niles Public Library, IL Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Using the United Nations International Day of Peace as a launching pad, the nursery-school set travels around the globe to learn how to say the word "peace" in 11 languages. With vibrantly colored patterns softened by soothing rhythmic lines, a detailed, full-page childlike scene depicting a community in a particular country sits adjacent to a big, bold portrait of one of its young citizens. These inviting representations serve as the touch point for preschoolers who may see themselves-or their classmates-in Meena of India, Carlos of Mexico or Chinese gal May. Peace is an abstract concept, but populist picture-book purveyor Katz makes it concrete by noting that children everywhere want to live, learn and play in safety. Best suited for one-on-one sharing or for small groups to pore over with a caregiver, this timely primer on nonviolence works in its simplicity. (pronunciation guides, note, map) (Picture book. 3-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780805078930
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
  • Publication date: 7/25/2006
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 540,649
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.75 (w) x 11.14 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Meet the Author

Karen Katz has written and illustrated many books for children, including The Colors of Us, My First Ramadan, Counting Kisses and Where is Baby’s Belly Button. Long inspired by folk art from around the world, she was inspired to write her first book, Over the Moon, when she and her husband adopted their daughter from Guatemala, and she wanted to tell the story of welcoming Lena into their lives. Katz loves to paint and experiment with texture, color, collage and pattern. Besides an author and illustrator, she has been a costume designer, quilt maker, fabric artist and graphic designer. Katz and her family divide their time between New York City and Saugerties, New York.

Biography

From painting and sculpture to quiltmaking and costume design, Karen Katz has been making art in one form or another all her life. But it was not until she and her husband adopted a baby from Guatemala that she considered a career in children's books. Published in 1997, her debut picture book, Over the Moon, told the story of one adoptive family's happy beginnings in a country far away. Since then, Katz has gone on to create many award-winning picture, board, and novelty books that capture the joys of childhood in simple storylines, vibrant colors, and winsome illustrations. Some include count-down elements (Counting Kisses, Ten Tiny Tickles) or interactive features (Where Is Baby's Belly Button?, Peek-A-Baby); still others introduce holiday traditions (My First Kwanzaa, My First Chinese New Year) or reinforce good habits, manners, or behavior (Excuse Me!, No Biting!, I Can Share).

Perhaps the secret to Katz's success (besides the undeniable appeal of her signature round-headed babies!) can be summed up in this quote taken directly from the author/artist's website: "When an idea for a story pops into my head, I ask these questions: Will a child want to read this book? Will parents want to read this book with their children? Will this book make a child laugh? Will this book make a parent and child feel something? Is there something visual here that will hold a child's interest? Will a child see something in a different way after reading this book? If the answer to any of those questions is 'yes,' then I know I'm on the right track."

Good To Know

Katz explains the difference between designing picture books and board books in this way:
Picture books usually have more words in them but they tell more of a narrative story. Board books are usually simpler. They are generally 6 spreads and are about one concept. When I create a board book, I try to make something that is very interactive for the baby, with flaps and pull tabs and lots of surprises. Board books are a perfect size for a baby's hand to hold and touch. Babies can have an experience all by them selves with a good board book and can also have a good lap-time experience with a mommy or daddy or caregiver. Picture books take a little more care since the pages can rip. With a board book, you can throw it in a stroller, chew on the corners and even wipe off mashed peas.

Katz has received numerous awards for her work, including:

  • Smithsonian, People, and Parent Guide magazines Best Books designation, all 1997, all for Over the Moon
  • Bill Martin, Jr. Picture Book Award nomination, Florida Reading Association Award nomination, and Child magazine Best Book designation, all 2000, all for The Colors of Us
  • National Parenting Publications Gold Award, and Child magazine Best Book designation, both 2001, and Bank Street School Books Committee Best Book designation, 2002, all for Counting Kisses
  • Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award, 2002, for Counting Kisses and Twelve Hats for Lena.
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      1. Education:
        Tyler School of Art, Philadelphia; Yale Graduate School of Art and Architecture
      2. Website:

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    Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
    • Anonymous

      Posted October 23, 2006

      Another great book from Katz!

      A simple way to teach your children the concept of peace...

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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