Share a Little Kindness Book Review

As a mom, I love that picture books have the power to teach young readers life lessons. With so much negativity, it’s important to remind our children that the actions and words used truly impact others.

Share a Little Kindness, written and illustrated by Colleen Brunetti, is an inspiring picture book that teaches readers the importance of different types of kindness.

I’ve been fortunate to have read and reviewed Brunetti’s first two books: Aidan the Wonder Kid and And Pip Too.

As a reader, I felt as though the narrator was speaking directly to me with the use of the word  ‘Love”. The narrator feels like a guide and mentor for young readers, explaining how to approach challenging situations and how to properly react. It made me feel calm and relaxed as it reminded me to listen more, spend time in nature, and use my imagination. In truth, I can’t remember a time when a text made me feel inspired and empowered, yet calm and reflective.

The layout of the text was just right, with the text on one side and the pictures on the other. The simplicity of the text with a smooth rhyme scheme makes it an easy read aloud for even the youngest of readers to enjoy. I like that Brunetti didn’t use sophisticated vocabulary, but chose to keep the word choice simple to match the feel of the flow. I really liked how the pictures focused on different animals to support the text instead of humans acting out the messages. It added to the calming feel and made the text even more memorable.

I really enjoyed that each page focused on a different aspect of kindness. Usually when kids think of ‘kindness’ they picture sharing and being nice to one another. This book dives deeper into what kindness is and looks like. And I may be a little bias, but I got excited to see the power of reading and imagination mentioned, featuring a creative picture. I also appreciated that Brunetti brought in experiencing nature by listening to the waves or playing outside. This reminder to take a break from technology is important for young readers and for parents (myself included).

However, a page that stuck out to me was, “Be strong and brave and speak your truth. Because you are in charge of you.” As a teacher, I have seen many students follow the crowd because they want others to like or accept them. This page speaks volumes to those students, reminding them to speak up and their voice matters.

I would recommend this book for readers 0-8. I think it would also be a great text for character education lessons about kindness, as well as a classroom and home library.

To purchase this book click here.

And Pip Too Book Review

Disclaimer: I was provided a copy of this book from the author to facilitate this review. As always, all opinions are my own and are not influenced in any way.

I LOVE when I get to work with authors multiple times. When I started to get back into blogging again in March, I connected with a fabulous author, Colleen Brunetti, who wrote a picture book about food allergies (click here to see the original post). Today, I’m so excited to share her new book with all of you.

And Pip too, by Colleen Brunetti, is an adorable picture book about a little sister and big brother’s sibling love.

Right away one feature that popped out at me was the font. I really like how the font was a little bolder than I usually see in a picture book, and how the author played with it. For instance when Big Guy stretched, the word is literally stretched on the page.

Pip is Big Guy’s little sister who wants to do everything her big brother does. From reading a book to building a tower, Pip is right behind him to trying join in the fun. While readers can infer that Big Guy isn’t always thrilled about this, he never actually says anything negative to Pip, which I really liked. Big Guy shows older siblings that even though younger brothers and sisters can be a lot to handle at times, it’s all part of being siblings.

The more we get to see some of the silly things that Pip does, my favorite is pouring the milk, the more she reminds me of the Cat from The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss. Pip is just trying to join in with her older brother, and sometimes she doesn’t do something the right way, but she does it all out of love. Pip is only trying to include herself in tower building, and resting underneath the oak tree, just like the Cat was trying to make that rainy day fun.

I think this book would be great to use with preschool and kindergarten kids.

To purchase the book click here.

Aidan the Wonder Kid Book Review

Through an amazing Facebook group, I have had the pleasure to connect with so many great children’s book authors over the last few weeks. Within the first 24 hours of joining the group I was chatting with the fabulous Colleen Brunetti.

Aidan the Wonder Kid by Colleen Brunetti, and illustrated by Dan Carsten, is a picture book that explains the “secret energy powers” of a little boy named Aidan, and how sometimes those powers disappear because of the foods he eats. As readers, we witness Aidan change his diet, experiment in the kitchen, and continue to be A WONDER KID WHO CAN’T BE STOPPED!

One of my favorite aspects is the characterization of Aidan. Right away kids can bond with him because he has the same interests and hobbies that they do. My favorite is that he prefers to front flip across the couch instead of strolling through the living room. He has lots of happy, positive energy and loves to go on adventures. When he gets sick and not able to do all of his favorite things, the reader does feel for Aidan.

I was also a HUGE fan of the illustrations for this book! The story describes Aidan as an extraordinary little boy, but with hints of super powers, which can also be seen in the illustrations. I really enjoyed the realistic cartoon look and the creativity. On one of the pages, mom and Aidan are mad scientists in the kitchen, and the illustrations do a beautiful job showing their experiments. Aidan Science Experiment

For me, the main theme of the book is that health issues don’t have to stop a person from enjoying life. Just because Aidan has food allergies it doesn’t mean he can’t still go to birthday parties (he may just have to bring his own dessert). By providing his body with what it needs, Aidan can play, jump, and flip just like he always did. I also love that the author included the importance of finding a support system, in this instance a group of other kids with food allergies. I think this really shows kids that food allergies are not uncommon and they should not be afraid of them.

Not only does this picture book have a fantastic theme, it also has lesson plans!! This totally made my teacher heart happy. Brunetti did a truly wonderful job creating Common Core aligned lesson plans for kids in grades 1-3, which focus on higher order thinking skills. I’m a huge fan of the discussion guide. It provides super clear directions (great for parents to use at home) and opens the door for meaningful conversations about food allergies and awareness.

This would be a lovely book and activity in a preschool to lower elementary grade classroom.

For more information about the book and author, feel free to check out these sites:

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