A Small Kindness

Running Pr. Feb. 2021. 32p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780762495221.
PreS-Gr 1–On the first day of school, a classroom full of nervous students turn trepidation into joy by practicing small acts of kindness. The day starts with the school depicted entirely in sepia tones alongside the text, “It was like a game of tag.” One child, Alice, appears in full color, piquing reader interest and curiosity. As Alice begins the chain of kindness with a smile directed at Lucas, the colors spread from person to person, with a shimmering trail of rainbow colors. Alongside the colors, the expanding kindness brings smiles and a shift in attitude. The acts are all simple: a compliment, holding a door, making someone laugh. A teacher and janitor are included. In the end, the kindness circles back to Alice, the school fully colored, with the text, “It was like a game of tag. And everyone won.” The simplicity of the story makes it accessible to children, who will understand the direct effect of acts in changing an environment. There is a range of skin colors—pale to brown—and two children have visible physical issues.
VERDICT Recommended for purchase as a solid addition to the “starting school” shelf as well as for the frequently requested topic of kindness.

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