Children’s Book Review: All Are Welcome

Multiculturalism Rocks! Children’s Book Review: All Are Welcome
Author: Alexandra Penfold
 Illustrator: Suzanne Kaufman
 Publisher: Knopf Books for Young People
 Age Range: 4 – 8 years  

One of my favorite days of the year is finally here:
Multicultural Children’s Book Day! #ReadYourWorld
Founded by co-creators Valarie Budayr and Mia Wenjen, this day was created to 
amplify and celebrate books a desperately needed for a multicultural world view in
children’s literature. They define multicultural children’s books as:
 
·  Books that contain characters of color as well as main characters that represent a
minority point of view.

·  Books written by and author of diversity or color from their perspective.
Search #ownvoices to discover diverse books written by diverse authors.

·  Books that share ideas, stories, and information about cultures, race, religion,
language, and traditions. These books can be non-fiction, but still written in a way
that kids will find entertaining and informative.

·  Books that embrace special needs or even “hidden disabilities” like ADHD,
ADD, and anxiety.
(From the Multicultural Children’s Book Day website)

For this week’s book review, I found the incredibly inspiring book All Are Welcome.
Sparse in words, what is there carries an impact that lingers after the last page
has been turned. As we follow a group of children through their school day,
Penfold reminds us that differences are what makes a community:
 
“No matter how you start your day.
What you wear when you play.
Or if you come from far away.
 
All are welcome here.”

If you read my last book review, you’ll know immediately why I fell in love with this book. Aside from the beautiful message and art, Penfold and Kaufman pay homage to the great poet, Dr. Maya Angelou. In the below illustration, we see a teacher (who looks a lot like Angelou) reading Life Doesn’t Frighten Me. It gave me goosebumps the moment I saw it.

All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold, illustrated by the talented Suzanne Kaufman, 
embodies everything the Multicultural Children’s Book Day strives to achieve. It is a
beautiful portrayal of how every child should feel: that no matter what, they deserve to
have a safe place in this world. 

"We’re part of a community.
Our strength is our diversity.
A shelter from adversity.
 
All are welcome here." 
Learn More:
 Multicultural Children’s Book Day #ReadYourWorld
Alexandra Penfold
Suzanne Kaufman

Where to Buy:
Indiebound.org

Happy Multicultural Children’s Book Day!

Robert Tres Trujillo's Art
Robert Tres Trujillo’s Art

Today is the day, join the kid lit community in celebrating cultural diversity in children’s books. The festivities take place here: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/

About Multicultural Chidlren’s Book Day, as stated on the group’s website:
Children’s reading and play advocates Valarie Budayr from Jump Into a Book and Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom have teamed up to create an ambitious (and much needed) national event and non-profit initiative.

This is an incredibly needed initiative and wonderful cause to support, don’t you think? If you agree, the organization is open for donations that supports reading programs in the classroom, as well as a donation book center, just to mention a few programs. The website includes links to relevant book reviews.

I hope to this, very soon, be a worldwide movement.

Happy Multicultural Children’s Book Day, let’s make it an every day thing. 😉