Children's Literature - Dr. Judy RowenKate's new babysitter is a woman from Guatemala named Rosa. Kate is a little wary of having a sitter who speaks Spanish, but soon she is singing Guatemalan songs and pretending to make tamales for her dolls. Rosa gives Kate a cloth doll in Guatemalan dress. When Rosa decides to return to her country to see her own daughter, Kate sends a doll with her for the little girl, but she keeps her new cloth doll. She names it Rosa. The illustrations are bright watercolors; a glossary of Spanish words is at the back.
Children's Literature - Meredith KigerA lovely first book to introduce Spanish to a child or the classroom. Allison has a new babysitter named Rosa. Through language and reminiscence, Rosa shares her Guatemalan heritage with Allison as she herself learns English. Rosa tells Allison about the family she has left behind including her daughter Juana who is similar in age to Allison, and about why she must work to help support her family. Eventually Rosa returns to Guatemala and Allison gives her favorite doll to Juana as a going away present. A fine example of the warmth and understanding that comes from a sharing of cultures. Colorful and detailed illustrations bring the contrasting cultures alive. A glossary of the Spanish words used in the text as well as a brief description of Guatemala are included.
School Library Journal - School Library JournalK-Gr 2-A heartwarming story about a young girl and her Guatemalan babysitter. When Kate first meets Rosa, she isn't sure that she'll like her, especially since Rosa doesn't speak much English. However, the woman gives her a cloth doll and over time the two forge a special relationship. Through the well-written, first-person narrative, children learn about friendship, a different culture, and a new language. The Spanish words used throughout are defined in context and in an appended glossary (no pronunciation guide). Average-quality watercolor illustrations with brightly painted borders appear on every page. They do an adequate job of portraying the characters and of depicting Rosa's homeland. An appealing read-aloud with a multicultural theme.-Maria Redburn, Collier County Public Library, Immokalee, FL
Annie AyresKate is unhappy about having a new baby-sitter who speaks Spanish, but Rosa breaks the ice by giving her a cloth doll from Guatemala. Newly arrived in Los Angeles, Rosa works hard to learn English and talks to Kate about her home in Guatemala, how life is harder but slower there, and how she misses her six-year-old daughter, Juana. When Rosa returns to Guatemala to be with her daughter, Kate is very sad but understands and sends a favorite doll as a special gift for Juana. Paterson's sunny watercolors paint the happy times Kate and Rosa spend together as well as Rosa's descriptions of her home and daughter. A brief note about Guatemala and a glossary of Spanish words (unfortunately without pronunciation guides) are appended. Strikingly similar to Spurr's "Lupe and Me", a chapter book reviewed in this issue, this picture book tells a contemporary story about the special friendship that develops between a young girl and her Latina babysitter, and the cultural bridge that is built through their relationship.
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