Each Kindness

Each Kindness

4.6 3
by Jacqueline Woodson, E. B. Lewis
     
 

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WINNER OF A CORETTA SCOTT KING HONOR AND THE JANE ADDAMS PEACE AWARD!

Each kindness makes the world a little better

This unforgettable book is written and illustrated by the award-winning team that created The Other Side and the Caldecott Honor winner Coming On Home Soon. With its powerful anti-bullying message and striking art, it will resonate with

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Overview

WINNER OF A CORETTA SCOTT KING HONOR AND THE JANE ADDAMS PEACE AWARD!

Each kindness makes the world a little better

This unforgettable book is written and illustrated by the award-winning team that created The Other Side and the Caldecott Honor winner Coming On Home Soon. With its powerful anti-bullying message and striking art, it will resonate with readers long after they've put it down.

Chloe and her friends won't play with the new girl, Maya. Every time Maya tries to join Chloe and her friends, they reject her. Eventually Maya stops coming to school. When Chloe's teacher gives a lesson about how even small acts of kindness can change the world, Chloe is stung by the lost opportunity for friendship, and thinks about how much better it could have been if she'd shown a little kindness toward Maya.

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review
Each Kindness…has beautiful watercolors and prose, strong characters and a plot that pricks the conscience…It's a junior companion to The Hundred Dresses, Eleanor Estes's unforgettable 1944 classic about the closet full of clothes a poor girl imagines for herself, to her classmates' consternation. By telling Maya's story from Chloe's vantage point, Woodson makes kids think about how failing to show empathy boomerangs.
—Emily Bazelon
Publishers Weekly
When a new and clearly impoverished girl named Maya shows up at school (“Her coat was open and the clothes beneath it looked old and ragged”), Chloe and her friends brush off any attempt to befriend her. Even when Maya valiantly—and heartbreakingly—tries to fit in and entice the girls to play with her, she is rejected. Then one day, Maya is gone, and Chloe realizes that her “chance of a kindness” is “more and more forever gone.” Combining realism with shimmering impressionistic washes of color, Lewis turns readers into witnesses as kindness hangs in the balance in the cafeteria, the classroom, and on the sun-bleached playground asphalt; readers see how the most mundane settings can become tense testing grounds for character. Woodson, who collaborated with Lewis on The Other Side and Coming On Home Soon, again brings an unsparing lyricism to a difficult topic. The question she answers with this story is one that can haunt at any age: what if you’re cruel to someone and never get the chance to make it right? Ages 5–8. Agent: Charlotte Sheedy Literary Agency. Illustrator’s agent: Dwyer & O’Grady. (Oct.)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
“Woodson’s fluid writing and deft particularity makes the girls’ bullying rebuffs of Maya absolutely heartbreaking. . . . In his watercolors, Lewis embraces the effects of light like an Impressionist, while his creative, often cinematic uses of point of view add resonance to the story. . . . Offers an alternative view to rosier stories of forgiveness and bully-victim friendships.”
Library Media Connection
“Beautifully heartbreaking . . . sure to touch a tender spot. . . . The situation should resonate with young people who are sure to recognize themselves in either Chloe or Maya. Lovely watercolors perfectly complement this simple yet strong story.”
The Horn Book
“Woodson’s affecting story, with its open ending, focuses on the withholding of friendship rather than outright bullying, and Lewis reflects the pensive mood in sober watercolors . . . in subtly detailed portraits. . . . A good conversation starter.”
Booklist
* "This quiet, intense picture book is about the small actions that can haunt. . . . Woodson's spare, eloquent free verse and Lewis' beautiful, spacious watercolor paintings tell a story for young kids that will touch all ages."
starred review Booklist
* "This quiet, intense picture book is about the small actions that can haunt. . . . Woodson's spare, eloquent free verse and Lewis' beautiful, spacious watercolor paintings tell a story for young kids that will touch all ages."
From the Publisher
* "This quiet, intense picture book is about the small actions that can haunt. . . . Woodson's spare, eloquent free verse and Lewis' beautiful, spacious watercolor paintings tell a story for young kids that will touch all ages." — Booklist, starred review

"Unfolds with harsh beauty and the ominousness of opportunities lost. . . . The matter-of-fact tone of Chloe's narration paired against the illustrations' visual isolation of Maya creates its own tension. . . . Lewis dazzles with frame-worthy illustrations, masterful use of light guiding readers' emotional responses." — Kirkus Reviews

* “Always on-target navigating difficulties in human relationships, Woodson teams up with Lewis to deal a blow to the pervasive practice–among students of all economic backgrounds–of excluding those less fortunate. . . . Lyrical and stylistically tight writing act in perfect counterpoint to the gentle but detailed watercolor paintings. . . . Gives opportunity for countless inferences and deep discussion . . . invite[s] readers to pause, reflect, and empathize. . . . With growing income disparity, and bullying on the rise, this story of remorse and lost opportunity arrives none too soon.” — School Library Journal, starred review

* “Combining realism with shimmering impressionistic washes of color, Lewis turns readers into witnesses as kindness hangs in the balance. . . . Woodson . . . again brings an unsparing lyricism to a difficult topic.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Woodson’s fluid writing and deft particularity makes the girls’ bullying rebuffs of Maya absolutely heartbreaking. . . . In his watercolors, Lewis embraces the effects of light like an Impressionist, while his creative, often cinematic uses of point of view add resonance to the story. . . . Offers an alternative view to rosier stories of forgiveness and bully-victim friendships.” — The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

“Beautifully heartbreaking . . . sure to touch a tender spot. . . . The situation should resonate with young people who are sure to recognize themselves in either Chloe or Maya. Lovely watercolors perfectly complement this simple yet strong story.” — Library Media Connection

“Woodson’s affecting story, with its open ending, focuses on the withholding of friendship rather than outright bullying, and Lewis reflects the pensive mood in sober watercolors . . . in subtly detailed portraits. . . . A good conversation starter.” — The Horn Book

Children's Literature - Mary Quattlebaum
Jacqueline Woodson and E.B. Lewis team up to create a picture book as evocative and emotionally nuanced as their Caldecott-Honor winning Coming on Home, Soon. Chloe doesn't want to be friends with Maya, the new, shy girl at school who wears old clothes. Even when Maya reaches out, Chloe and the other students feign busyness, "whispering secrets in each other's ears." The little girl ends up always playing alone; and when Maya moves away, Chloe wishes she had acted with greater kindness. Woodson's poetic language and Lewis's resonant images allow young readers to connect with both Chloe and Maya. Woodson ends on a powerful note, not with the girls becoming friends but with Chloe fully aware of how she hurt another—and, more implicitly, how she might behave differently in the future. This stunning book brings home to kids that each kindness "makes the whole world a little better" and "even small things count." Reviewer: Mary Quattlebaum
Children's Literature - Laura Backman
During a snowy winter, a new girl arrived at school. Maya wore ragged clothes and broken shoes meant for spring. She sat next to Chloe, who refused to even look at her. Maya kept trying to befriend Chloe who never smiled or looked back. All the girls refused to play with Maya and she ended up playing alone until one day, she was gone. To make the kids aware of the consequences of their actions, the teacher showed the children how kindness can ripple like a pebble dropped into water by giving each child a chance to drop a small stone into water and tell about a kindness they had done. Chloe could only think of the way she had treated Maya and hoped Maya would return so she could finally smile back. But Maya had moved away and the opportunity was lost. The author does not sugar-coat a type of bullying common to girls, ignoring and excluding. Readers will connect to the victim and the bully. They will sympathize with Maya, whose only mistake was to wear the wrong clothes, and with Chloe, the narrator of the story. While the author pulls no punches in the story's message and does not wrap up it up in a neat happy ending, she does end it powerfully, with hope, showing how even a bully can regret her actions and want to change. The illustrations are realistic and match the mood and tone of the text, while the varying viewpoints keep the viewer engaged. Images will stay with the reader long after the book is put down. While the title is intended for elementary children, it will resonate with teenagers and adults. This compelling story fits just right in a social-emotional curriculum. It can be used as a read aloud and a springboard for discussion with elementary children about how they act towards their peers and the power of kindness. Reviewer: Laura Backman
School Library Journal
Gr 2–5—Always on-target navigating difficulties in human relationships, Woodson teams up with Lewis to deal a blow to the pervasive practice-among students of all economic backgrounds-of excluding those less fortunate. When a new student arrives midterm, head down, with broken sandals, she sits right next to Chloe, an African American girl. The teacher introduces the pigtailed new student as Maya, but hardly anyone says hello, nor does Chloe give a welcoming smile. Lyrical and stylistically tight writing act in perfect counterpoint to the gentle but detailed watercolor paintings of a diverse rural classroom. Chloe's best friends "this year" call Maya "Never New" because her clothes are always secondhand. Each time the cheerful, independent Maya invites the clique members to play, they refuse. Woodson's writing, full of revelation and short on reckoning, gives opportunity for countless inferences and deep discussion and dovetails with the illustrations of children's facial expressions from surprising angles, expansive countryside views, and pools of water and windows, which invite readers to pause, reflect, and empathize. When their teacher invites them to throw a pebble in water and watch the ripples radiate to symbolize an act of kindness they share with the class, Chloe stops. Maya no longer is there. Her family has had to move. Had Chloe been kind even once? With growing income disparity, and bullying on the rise, this story of remorse and lost opportunity arrives none too soon.—Sara Lissa Paulson, American Sign Language and English Lower School, New York City
Kirkus Reviews
Woodson and Lewis' latest collaboration unfolds with harsh beauty and the ominousness of opportunities lost. Narrator Chloe is a little grade-school diva who decides with casual hubris that the new girl, Maya, is just not good enough. Woodson shows through Chloe's own words how she and her friends completely ignore Maya, with her raggedy shoes and second-hand clothes, rebuffing her every overture. Readers never learn precisely why Chloe won't return Maya's smile or play jacks or jump rope with her. Those who have weathered the trenches of childhood understand that such decisions are not about reason; they are about power. The matter-of-fact tone of Chloe's narration paired against the illustrations' visual isolation of Maya creates its own tension. Finally, one day, a teacher demonstrates the ripple effect of kindness, inspiring Chloe--but Maya disappears from the classroom. Suddenly, Chloe is left holding a pebble with the weight of a stone tablet. She gets a hard lesson in missed opportunities. Ripples, good and bad, have repercussions. And sometimes second chances are only the stuff of dreams. Lewis dazzles with frame-worthy illustrations, masterful use of light guiding readers' emotional responses. Something of the flipside to the team's The Other Side (2001), this is a great book for teaching kindness. (Picture book. 5-8)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780399246524
Publisher:
Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
10/02/2012
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
321
Product dimensions:
8.60(w) x 11.10(h) x 0.50(d)
Lexile:
AD640L (what's this?)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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