I recently joined the Barefoot Books Ambassador Program. For those unfamiliar with Barefoot Books, I’ll quote from their about us page which says:
Children need diverse, inclusive and inspiring books.
This is what we’re all about. From the very beginning, our books have opened windows to other cultures and perspectives, while also providing children of all backgrounds and abilities with a much-needed mirror of their own experiences.
Their message very closely aligns with things I believe in. And I loved looking through their catalog of books and recognizing so many titles.
What does this mean?
For this site, what this means is that I’ll have even more books to add to our directory.
Within the next month, I will be hosting a Facebook party to promote some favorites. I’m also available to co-host a Facebook party if you want to earn some free books for yourself. Or, if your personal passion also lies in diverse books for children and you’d like to join the Barefoot Books Ambassador team, I can help support you through that as well. This is the only time I will mention this on this web page. Interested in keeping up-to-date with any of those things listed? Join my closed Facebook Group (very recently created) by clicking here.
On this site and this blog, though, you can expect the same things you’ve always had. Book reviews, author interviews, book round-ups, and family travel tips both within and outside of the world of Barefoot Books.
And now I will do my first review of a Barefoot Book, The Barefoot Book of Children.
A Review of the Barefoot Book of Children
This book is by the people that bring us Barefoot Books. Before you read any further, know this. I love this book. It’s the perfect introduction to a year of learning about other cultures and people. Why? Well first let me tell you more about the book.
The Barefoot Book of Children is an illustration-packed book. Each page shares images of children around the world living their life. So we see kids at school, home, or play. But, since these are children all over the world, what their school, home, or play looks different. What I appreciated the most about this is that while we’re seeing these examples of how kids all over do things, we’re often asked to think about our own school, home, and play. Instead of there being just one way to do things, there are many ways, and by including the reader in that conversation, it connects us.
Another plus for the book is the lack of labels. Look at the image above. The story showcases a variety of homes. None are labeled.There’s nothing pointing out that it’s a Mongolian yurt, an American apartment, or a Southeast Asian stilt house. These are all just homes. They come in all shapes and sizes. By not labeling the images we can see the differences of the homes without concentrating on the stereotypes often portrayed when talking about other cultures.
Each portion of the story does the same. We get a quick overview of the variety of the world, then the opportunity to examine our own lives. By the end of the story, we feel special. Seriously, the book just makes us feel special.
But, if you think the feel good ending is where it stops – you’re wrong.
When the story finishes, the book isn’t over. You still have 15 pages of end notes that correspond with the story. The end notes are jumping points for more discussion. As you’ll see in the image above, the children and homes are now labeled. Why? For more information. You can follow your children’s interests to learn more about the specifics in the book. This aid helps you plan for what the next learning opportunity will be. Does the farmhouse in Scotland have your child wondering about other aspects of Scottish life? Well, now you know. Is your child now even more interested in their own place in this world? That’s perfect. What a great way to delve into a year of cultural learning!
You can find more details and buy the book here.
I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.