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The Other Side

4.48  ·  Rating Details ·  4,958 Ratings  ·  540 Reviews
Clover's mom says it isn't safe to cross the fence that segregates their African-American side of town from the white side where Anna lives. But the two girls strike up a friendship, and get around the grown-ups' rules by sitting on top of the fence together.

With the addition of a brand-new author's note, this special edition celebrates the tenth anniversary of this class
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published January 15th 2001 by G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
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Mr. Kennedy It seems like it's only their fear of what might be on the other side. Both girls seems so curious about why their parents don't want them on the…moreIt seems like it's only their fear of what might be on the other side. Both girls seems so curious about why their parents don't want them on the other side. Great question!(less)
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Other Side

I have been reading many children’s books that deal with prejudice and racism, but out of all the children’s books I had read that dealt with that subject; “The Other Side” which is written by Jacqueline Woodson along with illustrations by E. B. Lewis, is probably one of the most uplifting children’s books that deal with that subject ever!

Clover was a young black girl who always wondered about why her mother refused to let her go on the other side of the fence, where a white family lives at. It
This book was on my to-read list. On Wednesday, a colleague handed it to me and strongly suggested it. After reading the book, I quickly decided to share it with my class as a read-aloud. My students were completely engrossed in this story. They asked relevant questions which led to a rich discussion.

In The Other Side, a large fence separates Clover and her family from white people on the other side of town. Clover doesn't understand why there needs to be a fence. Her mother warns, "Don't climb
Lisa Vegan
Feb 20, 2012 Lisa Vegan rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Lisa by: Abigail A.
This is a very simple but not one bit simplistic story. This book would be a fine way to introduce the topics of segregation and interpersonal relationships. It’s really lovely and is beautifully and perfectly complemented with its beautiful watercolor illustrations. I love how the children, particularly the two new friends, are described and depicted. I got a laugh out of how the always clever kids get around the adult made rules, and I really appreciate how Clover’s mother, while very protecti ...more
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
The line dividing the mixing of black and white children is literally a fence put up by their parents to keep them separate. But the children find a way to play together anyway. Outstanding, but also sad.
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
Feb 24, 2012 Randie D. Camp, M.S. rated it really liked it
Clover, a young African American girl, and Annie, a young Caucasian American girl, live on opposite sides of a large fence. The fence is intended to keep Black and White townspeople segregated from each other. With each passing summer day, Clover becomes curious about the girl on the other side of the fence. Can they become friends? Will they cross onto the other side?

I enjoy stories where unlikely characters interact and develop a friendship. This book could serve as a mild introduction to race
May 07, 2015 Ij rated it it was amazing
The Other Side

Author: Jacqueline Woodson, Illustrations: E. B. Lewis

Publisher: G. P. Putnan’s Sons, 2001

This is a children’s picture book concerning race relations. The period of the book appears in the 1950s, based on text and illustrations. Accordingly, the book is dated and the relevance may not be comprehended by many of today’s children. Nevertheless, the book has a potent message that has been brilliantly conveyed by the author and illustrator.

The setting is a rural area that depicts two h
Mar 15, 2009 Patricia rated it it was amazing
This beautiful story, metaphor, glimpse into the thoughts of young girls living in the country in the 1950s is suitably illustrated in natural water color hues of yellow, blue, green and brown. The natural setting of summer and swings, jump ropes, puddles, clouds and friends playing outside sets the tone for the natural development of friendship between two girls who see each other from a blurry distance, but as the story develops they come closer and into clearer focus.

Like many books for chil
Sep 29, 2011 Wendy rated it it was amazing
The content and illustrations on this book are terrific. Watercolors are an effective medium to convey the outside (setting) and the realistic nature of the story. This book represents the enduring issue of divisiveness (by race, class, culture, gender, sexual orientation). In this particular book the issue is racial segregation and the "fence" as both the literal & metaphoric point of separation of people based on skin color. In this story, a White and Black girl (told from the African Amer ...more
Feb 21, 2013 Sandra rated it really liked it
The Other Side
By: Jacqueline Woodson
As a high school student I had the chance to look through elementary picture books and a give my opinion on them without reading them. The book that I was assigned to and that my group and I chose is entitled The Other Side.We decided to choose this book because just by seeing the cover we felt that it would have to do with racism and we wanted to see how the author communicated the message in the book. As a group we categorized this book in the section of
Apr 01, 2012 Dolly rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a wonderful tale about integration and the literal and figurative fences that kept people of different races apart. We loved that the two little girls dared to become friends, despite the mistrust and fear during the Civil Rights era. I thought it was brave for the little girls to push the boundaries set by their parents, sitting on the fence at first, but not crossing it; testing the waters to see what would happen. And I loved that the narrator's Mom noticed the blossoming friendship a ...more
Mar 12, 2016 Relyn rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Relyn by: I was drawn to the art before I knew a thing about it
I use this book every year to introduce my Civil Rights teaching unit. When I get to the last page of the book, I always cry. She says, "Someday, somebody's gonna come along and knock this fence down." I always close the book and say, "Tomorrow, we'll start to learn about a man, a woman, and a child who helped knock down fences just like this one." And as I speak, I hold up My Brother Martin, Martin's Big Words, If a Bus Could Talk, and The Story of Ruby Bridges.
Joanne Allen
Jul 17, 2015 Joanne Allen rated it really liked it
Categories/Genres- Realistic Fiction, Historical Fiction

Interest level- K-4

Reading level- Gr. 2

Brief description- Historical/realistic fiction: In a town divided by a fence, two young girls learn how to become friends, regardless of their color difference.

Characteristics of this genre and subgenre (discuss how they appear) -Illustrations are equally important to the narration. Without them, the audience would not know that the girls were of different races- White and African American.
-Point of
Lisa Haywood
Oct 02, 2014 Lisa Haywood rated it it was amazing
THE OTHER SIDE, by Jacqueline Woodson, is another beautifully-written piece of children’s fiction that will tweak at your emotions and inspire dialogue between reader and audience. Set in what appears to be the early 1960s, shortly before the Civil Rights Act made racial discrimination and segregation illegal, the book offers the hope that even small acts between just a few people can lead to change.

Clover sits in her yard wondering about the fence that stretches through the town, separating wh
Feb 14, 2014 Miguel rated it it was amazing
In the other side the main character Clover is an African-american girl who sees an american (white) girl named Annie on the other side of a wooden fence. They both seemed to have much in common and ended up becoming friends.

I would recommend that students within 4th to 6th grade should read this book because that's the time when they start learning about America’s history of separation between white and colored people. This book also has 300 lexile, so that would be a good reading level for ele
Sep 28, 2009 Valerie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: week9-21-09
A young black girl named Clover lives in a town where a fence separates the black side of town from the white side and her mother tells her never to cross over the fence. During this summer, her white neighbor named Annie, begins to sit on the fence each day, watching Clover. Clover begins to become more curious about the fence, the girl, and why it’s even there. One day, feeling brave, Clover walks to the fence to meet Annie. From this point on, the girls sit on the fence together each
NS Kelley
Nov 04, 2009 NS Kelley rated it it was amazing
This is a story is about a little girls point of view during a time period where racial segregation was still around. Once summer you see her evolve when she makes friends with a white girl, Annie who lives next to her. The story starts when the little black girl, Clover plays on one side of the fence while Annie, sits up on top of the fence. Both children were told not to play on the other side because black children and white children should not play together. Over time, Clover gets up enough ...more
Linda Lipko
Jan 07, 2013 Linda Lipko rated it really liked it
What a pure delight to combine the writing of Newbery honor winner Jacqueline Woodson and the award-winning illustrations of E.B. Lewis.

This is a small book that melds the words and images to make a stellar story with a great moral.

From a distance Clover can see a white girl standing by the fence. Clover's mother warns not to go near the fence because it isn't safe.

Clover watches the child from the safety of her swing. She watches the girl who jumps and plays in water puddles while Clover is to
Oct 03, 2011 Jennifer rated it it was amazing
The Other Side, is a story about an African American girl who grew up next to a fence that divided her from white people. She notices a girl sitting on the fence, and eventually gets courage to sit with her.
This book, by Jacqueline Woodson, introduces the racially segregated south in a positive and hopeful way. This story is a great example of cultural authenticity from how the girl wasn't allowed near the fence because it was dangerous on the other side, to how the girls friends all ignored th
Mari Miyagi
Sep 18, 2015 Mari Miyagi rated it it was amazing
The story plot is a bit similar to Each Kindness but I like the ending better than Each Kindness. This story can nicely encourage children to think about segregation and racism, making connections, sharing feelings, personifying, discussing author's viewpoints and messages, and using higher-order thinking. I could also connect this to a history unit on segregation. Although many books that talk about segregation and racism include hardships and struggles, I like The Other Side leaves you with a ...more
Ellen Brandt
This is the book I read to the youngest students to give them a glimpse of the time before Martin Luther King Jr and the civil rights movement. It is a very sweet story, told from the perspective of an African American girl who reaches out to a lonely white girl. Shows how sometimes kids can be wiser than their grownups.
Thomas Ponce
Feb 14, 2014 Thomas Ponce rated it really liked it
Girls are separated by a fence without knowing why or being told, why while they look at each other day by day, just focusing about each other. The curiousity can not be tamed anymore and they engage in a conversation,which leds them to become close friends.

The grade group I believe is 3rd graders to 6th graders. They most likely will be able to read it without much difficulty. Younger children can be read it by their parents and or teachers. This book has the ability to be well enjoyed by them
Heather Brownlee
Nov 16, 2014 Heather Brownlee rated it it was amazing
Beautiful illustrations and a beautiful story. In this story the "fence" is a literal thing segregating the two sides of town. It is also a metaphor for the segregation of the white side of town and the African-American side of town. The two little girls are separated by the fence and are told by their mothers never to go on the other side of the fence. They find a way around the rule by sitting on top of the fence. This was a great story of little girls finding a way around what was separating ...more
Irina Ryabyy
Oct 27, 2014 Irina Ryabyy rated it liked it
The Other Side, by Jacqueline Woodson, is a story that deals with racism and discrimination. In the book there are two girls, one white and one black and they are separated by a fence. For as long as the two girls can remember, their mothers have always told them not to go on the other side of the fence because it is dangerous. Even though the two girls see each other when they go into town and when they play outside, they never play together. The two girls can see that they look different, yet ...more
Karli Eller
Nov 07, 2015 Karli Eller rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wow-books
How does change come about? Is it the result of one or two big decisions or the culmination of a lot of little ones? Is it only the wealthy and powerful who can bring about change or can everyday people have a hand in altering the way things have always been done? Jacqueline Woodson takes a look at two ordinary little girls who show us that change can happen little by little if you are willing to do things a little differently than the way they have always been done before.

Clover and Annie live
Brooke Snyder
Sep 19, 2014 Brooke Snyder rated it it was amazing
Shelves: diversity
Summary: Clover, an African American girl wondered why a fence separated the black and white side of town. Clover’s mom said it wasn’t safe for her to cross the fence which divided the two. But, Clover’s interest grew. On the other side of the fence lived a white girl named Anna. Eventually, Clover and Anna become friends and get around the rules by sitting on the fence together.

Personal Response/Critical Response: This book brings out a lot of emotion and controversy while reading. As an adult,
 (NS) Amie
Nov 04, 2009 (NS) Amie rated it really liked it
Taken from the School Library Journal:

"A story of friendship across a racial divide. Clover, the young African-American narrator, lives beside a fence that segregates her town. Her mother instructs her never to climb over to the other side because it isn't safe. But one summer morning, Clover notices a girl on the other side. Both children are curious about one another, and as the summer stretches on, Clover and Annie work up the nerve to introduce themselves. They dodge the injunction against c
Laura Noto
Nov 02, 2009 Laura Noto rated it really liked it
The Other Side is a picture book for students in grades 1-4. It is about a young African-American girl named Clover and a young Caucasian girl named Annie. Clover’s house is near a large fence that segregates the town. All of the African-Americans live on one side and the Caucasians live on the other. Clover’s mother always tells her not to go over the fence because it isn’t safe. She begins seeing Annie sitting on top of the fence. She wants to go talk to Annie but she is unsure. After
(NS) Laura Jackson
Nov 05, 2009 (NS) Laura Jackson rated it really liked it
Clover, a young black girl, is curious as to why a fence in her yard separates the black people from the white people. Clover's mother told her not to ever cross over the fence. During the summer, Clover notices a young white girl from the other side, sitting on the top of the fence. This makes Clover even more curious about the fence and the young white girl who is always sitting on the fence. She sees the girl near the fence on both sunny and rainy days. One day, Clover gains the courage to ta ...more
L-Crystal Wlodek
The Other Side is for students in kindergarten through fourth grade and is an ALA Notable Book for Children (2002), a Notable Book of the English Language Arts (2002), and a Notable Social Studies Trade Books (2002). This story is about a fence that separates the black and white sides of town and a black girl named Clover and a white girl named Annie who do not understand why. Annie begins to sit on the fence, rain or shine. Clover grows more curious about the fence and Annie and one day decides ...more
Odalis Contreras
Feb 20, 2013 Odalis Contreras rated it really liked it
The Other Side is a story about two liitle girls, Clover and Annie that "break down the fence" of diversity. Clover comes from the 'black side' of the fence and Annie from the 'white side' of the fence. They both werent allowed to jump over the fence on to the other side. Curiosity brings them together to become friends and would play together during the summer even though at the time it wasn't the norm. When Clover asked her mama why she simply said, "Because thats the way things have always be ...more
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I used to say I’d be a teacher or a lawyer or a hairdresser when I grew up but even as I said these things, I knew what made me happiest was writing.

I wrote on everything and everywhere. I remember my uncle catching me writing my name in graffiti on the side of a building. (It was not pretty for me when my mother found out.) I wrote on paper bags and my shoes and denim binders. I chalked stories a
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“Someday somebody's going to come along and knock this old fence down.” 5 likes
“My mamma says I shouldn't go on the other side".... My mama says the same thing. But she never said nothing about sitting on it” 2 likes
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