Each Kindness

By Jacqueline Woodson, E.B. Lewis (illustrator),

Book cover of Each Kindness

Book description


Each kindness makes the world a little better

This unforgettable book is written and illustrated by the award-winning team that created The Other Side and the Caldecott Honor winner Coming On Home Soon. With its powerful anti-bullying…

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Why read it?

4 authors picked Each Kindness as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

“Mommy, do I have to sit by her?”

My kid can be a real jerk. He picks a genre of child and decides they’re terrible. He’s been horrified by the existence of girls, boys, toddlers, big kids, and human babies. It’s straight-up bigotry, and it’s not okay with me. I’ve preached and preached on sharing space and being nice. Each Kindness doesn’t preach. We stand in the main character’s shoes as she decides who deserves kindness and who doesn’t. We feel the consequences.

Each Kindness, for me, is a modern take of the Eleanor Estes classic children’s story, The Hundred Dresses. In Each Kindness, a new girl comes to school, and no one--especially the protagonist Chloe--makes any effort to befriend her. Instead, Chloe and her friends actively snub her. Chloe learns an important lesson about “…each kindness--done and not done.” This story can generate thoughtful conversations in the classroom and at home.

From Trudy's list on picture books that address bullying.

This is another book that is in my top 5 for picture books. I think the true theme of this book is “Missed Opportunity”. When a new girl shows up at the school, a girl and her friends refused to let her into their circle. But when the student never returned, the girl wished she had been kinder. I love this book. I read it weekly just to remind myself that not all picture books have a happy ending. Jacqueline Woodson is the queen of tackling difficult topics in children’s books. And EB Lewis consistently leaves things off the page.…

From Winsome's list on children being unapologetic.

Activism can be private and personal, too. In this heart-wrenching book, a young girl narrates the story of a new kid, obviously poor, joining her class. Not much outright bullying happens, but the narrator—and all the other kids—simply ignore the new kid. Day after day. Until she moves away. But the narrator’s point of view shifts. She feels regret and wishes she could take back each unkindness. It’s a book about how a moment of failure can inspire us to change. The dreamy watercolors invite introspection. I always close the book determined to do better and be better.

From Annette's list on children’s books for young activists.

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