Friday, July 9, 2021

7 Days, 7 Books, Day 7. The Big Beach Clean Up by Charlotte Offsay, illustrated by Katie Rewse

Today's books are awesome stories that coincidently plant seeds for STEWARDSHIP.

Kids love being part of the world around them--playing, learning, exploring--and I believe these books show different ways that children can become more involved in it.

In The Big Beach Clean Up by Charlotte Offsay, illustrated by Katie Rewse, Cora is dismayed when her plans to win the sandcastle contest are derailed by too much trash at the beach. Cora finds ways to make her beach better and get the contest back on course.  

What I love about this book is that its theme can be applied to any community or gathering place. Working together to improve our environment is a goal we all share for our home spaces, and this delightful, kid-centric story shows children how and why efforts for cleaning up the outdoors can be done. I highly recommend this book for any family, any classroom, in any region -- beachside or inland, riverside or mountaintop. Cora's voice will connect with and inspire readers everywhere.

Dear Earth, From Your Friends in Room 5
by Erin Dealey, illustrated by Luisa Uribe is a story about children who write to Earth over the course of a year, beginning with their New Year's resolution to help the Earth, and Earth writes back. 

What I love about this story is the simple things that kids (and everyone else) can do toward improving the environment. The text is fun and engaging, with the personalities of classmates and Earth itself shining through in the letters that are exchanged. I highly recommend this book for any classroom or home as a way to mentor monthly goals and activities to make Earth Day an "Every Day" mindset.

She Leads, The Elephant Matriarch by June Smalls, illustrated by Yumi Shimokawara, is a beautifully written story about the elephant matriarch and how she cares for her family. The text is written in a way that I believe young readers can see themselves on the page, as leaders and friends, working together and living side by side in a way that uplifts and inspires. 

When paired with either of the two books above, or even when read independently, I believe She Leads can serve a multitude of purposes: 

engage curiosity to learn more about elephants and other animals, 
propel conversations about how children can be leaders in different roles in their own lives, and 
inspire an appreciation of our connections to all living things in the natural world. 

I highly recommend this book for everyone.

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