This is a gem of a book as it inspires so much discussion on many levels as you read it to a child. Author and illustrator Jennifer Mann captures the whimsy, honesty and shall we say emotion of little girls at a birthday party. Ginger was making her guest list and wanted to omit one girl in her class who was a bit different, Lyla Browning. She was “weird, smelled like old leaves and didn’t talk much.” Clearly the other kids in the class felt the same way when they reacted to her Show and Tell tarantula. Mom rightfully said ALL the girls had to be invited or none. It turns out that Lyla arrived too early, brought a very plainly wrapped gift, didn’t participate in the games as she was checking out bugs with her magnifying glass, and even liked the birthday cake. The other girls were complaining, wrecking and picky. Just as Ginger was expressing her frustration, Lyla arrived with a ladybug to bring a giggle.When it was time to open presents, Lyla’s was the best, a hand made nest with two chocolate speckled eggs in it. A sweet and playful friendship was born. This book is such a great story to start conversations about feelings, being different, how we treat others, and how to include classmates who might go to the beat of a different drummer. Check out my video review and blog where I share tips for parents on how to use this book with your child to raise the level of language learning.
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