See Us Bloom: Kids Poems on Compassion, Acceptance, and Bravery

Modern Marigold Bks. Apr. 2023. 32p. Tr $19.95. ISBN 9781735031941.
Gr 1-3–Ba-Da moves to a new home and school, but with the encouragement from each poem, finds strength in being themself. Each page or spread features a poem with a theme: from being brave when faced with a scary change like moving away from home; to saying no and sticking up for one’s name and being; to eating, dressing, and speaking in a way that is comfortable and true to oneself. A warm palette of yellow, orange, red, and brown complements the overall theme of warm acceptance for oneself and others. The artwork in each scene is bright and bold, and it celebrates the diversity of the classroom and community where Ba-Da now lives. Many important points are emphasized in the text with bold words in colors like red, green, or blue. While the poetry is in verse and has no rhyming scheme, there is still a flow to the words and ideas of being a good friend, asking for help, and overall belonging. This would be an excellent read-aloud book for a whole class, in addition to an individual read to help build empathy.
VERDICT A beautiful picture book about acceptance with a flow that would make it perfect for read-alouds; a must-purchase where fun and colorful depictions of these themes are needed.

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