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Home (Shelley Rotner’s Early Childhood Library)

Home (Shelley Rotner's Early Childhood Library)

By: Shelley Rotner & Amy Goldbas
Publisher: Millbrook Press
Publication Date: September 2010
ISBN: 978-0761346050
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: September 2010

If you look around you or through pages in a book or magazine, you will see many different kinds of houses. They are made of many different kinds of materials, some are tall, some are small, and some like houseboats are even on the water, but “a home is more than a house.” In the pages of this book you can see families of all sorts. There are families that smile at you from porches or doorways, some are sitting down to read together, one has gathered around a disabled member sitting in a wheelchair, while others are sitting down to a meal together. Some homes are in big cities and “some are in the country.” There are even homes that are hitched to the back of a car and move around.

Homes are places where you can keep out of the elements and they are also places “where you should feel safe.” Homes are especially good places to “love and be loved,” where you can find hugs, kisses, and can be cuddled. You can see children playing a violin, putting out the recycle, watering plants, reading, working on the computer, and doing crafts with Grandma. Kids can munch on apples, enjoy a glass of milk, enjoy fruit pops, lick the drips falling from ice cream cones, or have dinner with everyone. Home is a place for everything from play, bath time, to nestling in a bed getting ready to sleep, but there are those who don’t have advantages that many do. In this book you will also get to take a look at people who don’t have homes and “people who help those in their community who are homeless.”

This is a very interesting book for children that discusses what comprises a “home,” but also touches on homelessness. I liked how this book expressed the meaningful aspects of home and what they mean to children. The full color photographs that accompany the text say as much as the words do. The full impact of this book comes in the final pages when we see examples of the homeless, including one young boy. In the back of the book there are bullets that gives statistical information about homelessness and then another that gives suggestions on how children can help. There are also a few recommended websites to explore. This book is quite well done and, on one level, stunning.

Quill says: This book gently tells children about homelessness, a social issue that is often seen, but needs to be talked about ... even with younger school children. It would make an excellent read and discuss book in the homeschool or classroom setting.

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