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Embracing friendship and community

The following picture books provide models for warmth, friendship, community-building, and inclusivity in ways that very young children can understand and embrace. David Soman’s inviting How to Two is a counting book that could also serve as a set of inclusivity instructions. A lone boy plays on a slide (“how to one”); when he joins […]

Cuteness overload

Aww! Who doesn’t love a hilarious or heartwarming story of human-animal (or interspecies) friendship? These new books for preschoolers starring unalike best buds fit the bill. A classic friendship story plays out in Amy Hest’s Buster and the Baby as a crawling baby and the family dog play a game of indoor hide-and-seek. Polly Dunbar’s […]

Life lessons in “best friend” easy readers

As a Pre-K teacher, I want to help my students learn to socialize and make friends. Inevitably, children often pair off and become best friends as the year progresses. These relationships involve playing and experiencing great joy together. But best friends can also fight, argue, annoy, and experience sadness. I want to help children in […]

The Thing About Jellyfish

Through NetGalley, I had the opportunity to read The Thing About Jellyfish, by Ali Benjamin, a middle grade book that will debut mid-September 2015. In this book, Suzy Swanson processes the death of her old friend Franny and the end of a friendship. She grieves the way that she and Franny grew apart before Franny […]