The Lost Homework

Child’s Play. Sept. 2019. 32p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781786283467.
K-Gr 2–On any normal Friday, Sonny would start his homework right away, but this is a special time for his Traveler family. A cousin is getting married. With his family, Sonny helps clean, shoe the horse, and plan the trip. Even when they get to the party, the young man participates by telling a story. On Sunday, Sonny still doesn’t have time for homework as he plays and helps others, and by the time he does remember, it turns out to be missing. All he can do is take responsibility. However, his teacher points out that his education wasn’t neglected, he actually learned a lot. Despite the title, the central topic of this book is not homework, it is community with an appended theme of education. O’Neill’s latest story about the Travelers lovingly portrays the life of this often stereotyped group. Sonny demonstrates how important it is to participate; by lending a hand to one another, the Traveler site has formed a tight-knit community. The author also brings up a valid point about education that is not said enough, learning continues long after the last bell rings and class is dismissed. Along with Beautyman’s sweet looking illustrations, this is a charming whole.
VERDICT A #OwnVoices narrative about a Romani family with universal lessons on community and education, appropriate for those who have just started their own elementary school life.

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