Book Reviews: Kindness Books

Lately I've been on a campaign for kindness with our students. I'd been feeling like I was reading too many books telling kids what NOT to do. Nothing wrong with that but it was time to shift gears. It's nice to use books plum full of kindness. It creates a different type of conversation and focus during the lesson. Here are two amazing discoveries (which both happen to have a knitting theme) I've been using to encourage kids to let their caring side shine....

Extra Yarn
Author: Mac Barnett
Illustrator: Jon Klassen
Interest Level: Ages 4 and Up

From Publishers Weekly: Annabelle finds a box filled with yarn of every color, she immediately sets out to knit sweaters for everyone she knows. Barnett’s story is both fairy tale lean and slyly witty. No matter how many sweaters Annabelle knits, the box always has “extra yarn” for another project, until the entire town is covered with angled stitches in muted, variegated colors—people, animals, and buildings alike. A villainous archduke offers to buy the box, but Annabelle refuses. He steals it, but finds it contains no yarn at all, and with the help of just a bit more magic, it finds its way back to Annabelle. Barnett wisely leaves the box’s magic a mystery, keeping the focus on Annabelle’s creativity, generosity, and determination.

The Mitten Tree
Author: Candace Christiansen
Illustrator: Elaine Greenstein
Interest Level: Ages 4 and Up

From the Book Jacket: On a snowy day old Sarah notices that a little boy at the bus stop has no mittens. Worried that he couldn't join in the winter fun, Sarah gathers together her yarn and knits mittens for the little boy, placing them on the blue spruce tree at the bus stop early the next morning. 

Each day thereafter the children look for new mittens, and every day Sarah knits new ones. One morning she covers every branch with bright new mittens for the children. Though she has used up all her yarn, Sarah returns home with a full heart and discovers a wonderful surprise waiting on her porch.

A Link to These Books:

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