Written by Hugo Ibarra and John Seidlitz
Illustrated by Katia Lara
Recommended by: Joyce Rienzo, youth librarian, Riverhead Free Library Association.
Suitable for: ages 4-8 years
Why I chose it: This book reflects the current situations of many children who have come into this country alone. Sometimes they don't know where one or both parents are. They may be cared for by a family member they don't know well. It shows how befriending an adult can lessen the stress of that child and give them hope.
What I liked best: This story shows the struggle and pain of young children when a parent is missing, and when they move to a new country — and then the joy of finding a friend in a teacher. Many children coming to the United States will be able to relate to the story. I also felt the illustrations were terrific.
How teachers can use it: This book is an excellent resource to have for children to read so they can understand the worries and feelings immigrant children encounter. It will also show how a teacher is a valued friend to help them when a situation arises.
About the authors: John Seidlitz is a former social studies and ESL teacher. Hugo Ibarra immigrated to the U.S. when he was 25 and is now an elementary school principal in Texas.
"Check it Out" features books recommended to teachers and parents by school librarians and other educators. Have a recommendation? Send suggestions, along with your name and local union, to email@example.com.