Each Kindness
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Each Kindness

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4.3 of 5 stars 4.30  ·  rating details  ·  1,694 ratings  ·  456 reviews
Each kindness makes the world a little better

Chloe and her friends won't play with the new girl, Maya. Maya is different--she wears hand-me-downs and plays with old-fashioned toys. Every time Maya tries to join Chloe and her gang, they reject her. Eventually, Maya plays alone, and then stops coming to school altogether. When Chloe's teacher gives a lesson about how even sm...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published October 2nd 2012 by Nancy Paulsen Books

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Wonder by R.J. PalacioThe One and Only Ivan by Katherine ApplegateThe Fault in Our Stars by John GreenLiar & Spy by Rebecca SteadThe Lions of Little Rock by Kristin Levine
Newbery 2013
36th out of 119 books — 1,069 voters
A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip C. SteadZen Ties by Jon J. MuthHorton Hears a Who! by Dr. SeussEach Kindness by Jacqueline WoodsonEnemy Pie by Derek Munson
Picture Books About Kindness
4th out of 56 books — 12 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,796)
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Dolly
Feb 11, 2014 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a difficult story - one that rings so true, but is probably a bit hard for many children. But it's an important story, too, whether a child is on either side of the story. The book is about bullying, but it's the subtle kind of bullying, the ignoring and whispering and refusal to acknowledge someone. I think this kind of bullying can be the worst, because there's no physical harm, but the emotional scars can be even deeper.

We read this story together and our girls were so sad. They coul...more
babyhippoface
Love Jacqueline Woodson. Did not like this book.

I think I'm the only one.

From page one, the tone of this book put me off. Even though she wasn't making a speech, it felt so didactic I just couldn't like it. In my mind, the narrator droned on in a depressing monotone. The story was entirely hopeless. There was no spark of light at the end, no spot of hope. My imaginary last line was, "And then the entire rest of my life sucked, too."

Harsh. Yes, I know. It felt harsh when I read it. It's The 100 D...more
Susan Erhardt
My husband read this to my daughter's fourth grade class recently, and they were disappointed by the ending. I, however, think that is one reason it is such a great book. Not only does it demonstrate to kids that their actions have consequences, but it also shows them that sometimes you don't get a second chance to make things right when you make the wrong choice. Every time they leave a child out, it hurts.

I had personal experience with changing to a new school in fifth grade and being not only...more
Destinee Sutton
We're reading Estes' The Hundred Dresses for book club in December, so this new picture book immediately struck me as similar. They're both stories about a new girl in school who is treated as an outcast because her clothes are shabby and she seems culturally different from the other kids. And (spoiler alert) in both books the poor bullied girl moves away before the mean girls can realize how terrible they've been and apologize.

I think what makes Each Kindness special is that it distills the es...more
Lisa Vegan
Dec 05, 2012 Lisa Vegan rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Lisa by: Terri Lynn
This story is incredibly mournful and poignant. I was near tears throughout this book; I would have been as deeply affected when I was a child. It reminded me so much of the short children’s novel The Hundred Dresses, which touched me deeply as an elementary school student. Maybe it’s because I just read this picture book, but at the moment it feels like an even more powerful story to me.

I do wish the teacher had done the kindness exercise earlier, preferably immediately noticing what was happe...more
Richie Partington
Richie’s Picks: EACH KINDNESS by Jacqueline Woodson and E.B. Lewis, ill., Penguin/Nancy Paulsen, October 2012, 32p., ISBN: 978-0-24652-4

“I hope when you decide
Kindness will be your guide
Put a little love in your heart
And the world will be a better place
And the world will be a better place
For you, and me, you just wait and see”
--Jackie DeShannon

“The next day, Maya’s seat was empty.
In class that morning, we were talking about kindness.
Ms. Albert had brought a big bowl into class and filled it wit...more
Barbara
Maybe because Maya's new, maybe because she seems a little different from the rest of her classmates, or maybe for some secret, never-revealed reason, Chloe and her friends ignore the new girl's offerings of friendship. They refuse to play with her or even return her smiles and call her names because of her hand-me-down clothes. When Chloe fails to appear for class on the same day that the students' teacher gives a lesson on the ripple effects of our actions, Chloe realizes too late that she has...more
Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
I had a lump in my throat towards the end of this book. You truly feel the emotion of this book as you read it and the regret that the main character feels for not having reached out in kindness and friendship. Great for discussion starter in 2nd grade on up.
Kate
A lovely, simple story about kindnesses left undone - this would be a great picture book read aloud to start a discussion of classroom climate, bullying, and empathy.
Margaret
Aug 12, 2013 Margaret rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Margaret by: E.B. Lewis
Shelves: picture-book
8/8/13 ** This year I was able to read this book to my fourth graders in the first week of school. Fabulous response. "That's a...sad ending. I was surprised." "That's a happy ending, she knew what she needed to do." If you haven't read this book, what are you waiting for???

11/6/2012 ** I had the fantastic opportunity to meet E.B. Lewis and Jacqueline Woodson last June in New York at BEA. Lewis told me about a wonderful book that he'd just finished illustrating for Woodson - this one. I was so d...more
Alex Baugh
One of my favorite books of 2012 is Jacqueline Woodson's Each Kindness, and now, I am happy to say, it has won the 2013 Charlotte Zolotow Award given by the Cooperative Children's Book Center.

The story begins one snowy, wintry day when a new girl named Maya is introduced to Chloe's elementary school class. The first thing Chloe notices is that Maya's clothes are shabby and she has on spring shoes in winter. Sitting next to Chloe, Maya makes one friendly overture after another but each time Chlo...more
Sassy School Counselor
What I love about this book is that it doesn't have a happy ending. To open this lesson I had the students take out a piece of paper and then crumble it up. Then I asked them to smooth it out so that there were no wrinkles. Then we discussed how the wrinkles are like imprints. That when we insult and hurt it leaves wrinkles and no matter how many "sorries" or things we do to "smooth it out" the scars are still there. At the end of the book we had a brief discussion about kindness, but also our r...more
Karen Witzler
I liked this book a lot. I thought that the slightly out -of -focus aspect of the illustrations gave it the quality of memory, and this is what the book is about; Chloe's deeply regretful memory of a lesson that she did not learn soon enough. I loved that it was painfully realistic about this common form of bullying and that no saccharine ending was employed -- or for that matter, a saccharine prelude in the form of a lesson from the teacher (who may have regrets of her own here). Maya was clear...more
Monica!
Each Kindness reminded me very vividly of The Hundred Dresses, and it's perhaps a sign of how rarely this lesson comes up in children's books that The Hundred Dresses was the ONLY readalike I could think of.

The lesson, of course, is that if you're super mean to people, and later regret your behavior, there is 100% no guarantee you're going to be able to fix your mistakes.

Here, Chloe And Class are nasty as only little children can be, ignoring their (impoverished) new classmate Maya and her atte...more
Dave
I was in my editor's office yesterday and I saw this book from across the room. I first picked it up simply because I was stunned that the cover art was a painting not a photo.

Then I read the book. Wow! The story was just as real as the art. Jaded as I am, I was expecting the ending to be predictable and sappy. Wrong.

By not going with a traditional "feel good picture book ending," the reader can't help but feel the same emotion as the narrator.

Talk about "show, don't tell": This is how it's d...more
Ricki
This is a beautiful story that would be FANTASTIC for the classroom. Students of any age can learn from this book, and I would read it to my class on the very first day of school. It is easy to get caught up in drama and gossip, and Jackie Woodson reminds us how hurtful this can be. I am so glad that I own a copy of this book. I plan to read it to my son very often because the lessons are so important, and the story is simply stunning.

One of my favorite parts about this book is that it doesn't...more
Melody
I adored the illustrations. They were surpassingly wonderful, and perfect with the story. The story is unrepentantly sad, which I'm so in favor of. Real life rarely offers one the chance to make it all right in cases like this, and books that promise that ability are fairy tales. The unresolved, minor chord that this book ends upon makes it beautiful, poignant, and perhaps most importantly, something that lingers.
Julia Drescher
**SPOILER ALERT

What a beautiful story to read to children. Chloe and her classmates learn the importance of being kind. She realizes that she has nothing to state when asked to list a kind act she has performed. When a new girl (Maya) is teased or ignored by all the other kids, Chloe has not acted any differently. Not until the teacher's discussion does Chloe try to make things right with Maya, except that she is already gone. She has moved away with her family.

I really like that there is no art...more
Wendy
Terribly sad, very clearly written. Not something I'm excited about for the Newbery, but it wouldn't be out of place there. I liked it much, much better than The Hundred Dresses (which I've never gotten the appeal of). Of course, the ending that's so sad is actually the easier ending--much easier than Chloe actually having to follow through on her desire to be kind--but, well, it's a short book.
Monica Edinger
There are a lot of well-intentioned books featuring issues of exclusion among children of different ages. This one of them is for me the most transcendent. Woodson and Lewis take the issue to a remarkable level of emotional depth and truth. Outstanding. My longer blog post here.
Genee121
The book, titled Each Kindness, written by Jacqueline Woodson a Newbery Honor-winning author is a "MUST READ" not only for age appropriate children but for adult readers as well. While reading this beautiful story, I couldn't help but be reminded about a verse from a book in the bible, Matthew 7:12 that states "In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you. The story is told by the character named Chloe.

I believe that either directly or indirectly, we can all rel...more
Tina
The next book that I would like to read to you in our empathy themed unit is Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson. In this book we meet 2 main characters named Chloe and Maya. As I read the book today I want you to listen to how Chloe treats Maya and how you would feel if you were in both girls shoes. I am going to read a brief portion of the book and I want you to tell me what your first impression of Maya is and what you can infer about her. (brief turn and talk between students)
Now I am going...more
Linda Lipko
I'm on a quest to read all of Jacqueline Woodson's books. This newbery award winning author never disappoints.

Each Kindness is a small book that handles the subject of bullying, guilt, and the knowledge that one random act of kindness can make a difference. Conversely, one intentional act of cruelty leaves a scar long after the wound heals.

Woodson has a unique way with words -- ever so poetic -- with the ability to convey an important message without the need for hundreds of pages of text.

Richly...more
Samantha
Chloe turns her back on the new girl at school named Maya. Maya tries to engage Chloe in friendship many times by sharing things she's interested in, but Chloe gives her the cold shoulder. One day, Maya isn't at school and Chloe's teacher introduces a unit on kindness. She uses a stone and a bowl of water to illustrate the growing effect of kindness, how even the smallest kind gesture can grow to have a big effect. Chloe realizes her many wrongs in relating to May, but the time to right her wron...more
Treasa
When a new girl appears in their class, the other students don't accept her. She seems different - her clothes always look secondhand, and she eats strange food for lunch. Even when she invites the other children to play with her, they refuse. One day Maya doesn't come to school, and that is the day that the teacher speaks with them about kindness. When Maya never returns to school, the narrator of the book regrets her behavior and wishes she had been kinder to Maya.

I was not a big fan of this s...more
Rachael Ricker (Myers)
Maya is the new girl at school who doesn’t quite fit in with her shabby secondhand clothes and broken shoes. Chloe and her friends ignore her and call her names until one day when her teacher shows the class that “each kindness makes the whole world a little bit better.” Chloe decides to make amends and smile at Maya the next time she sees her, but Maya doesn’t return to school and Chloe is left to wonder what could have been.

Woodson’s text flows naturally and the story quietly unfolds. Her sty...more
Terri Lynn
This one made me cry a little. One day Chloe's school principal brings a new little girl named Maya into Chloe's class. Her coat was open, her clothes were old and ragged, and her shoes were spring shoes not suitable for snow and one strap was broken. The little girl was poor but friendly and tried to be friends with Chloe who refused to smile back or speak and turned her body away from Maya and moved her chair from hers.She did it day after day as Maya tried to be friendly.

As time goes by, Chl...more
Bookandahug
On a quiet, cold, snowy and muted winter morning the classroom door opens and the principal enters holding the hand of Maya, the new girl. Her "coat was open and the clothes beneath it looked old and ragged. Her shoes were spring shoes, not meant for the snow. A strap on one of them had broken." Maya is looking down. She can't face being that new girl. But when she sits down in the empty seat, she turns and smiles at the girl across the aisle. Maya will offer her friendship in many small ways as...more
Christa
Audience: Primary
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Quote: "Ms. Albert had brought a big bowl into class and filled it with water. We all gathered around her desk and watched her drop a small stone into it. Tiny waves rippled out, away from the stone. This is what kindness does, Ms. Albert said. Each little thing we do goes out, like a ripple into the world." (p. 19)

The reason that I chose this quote is because I feel as though everyone should be able to picture this image in their minds of being in a clas...more
Melissa
Audience: K-2 and older

Genre: picture book, realistic fiction

Awards:
• Coretta Scott King Honor Book
• 2013 Jane Addams Peace Award
• 2013 Charlotte Zolotow Award
• Best Book of 2012 – School Library Journal

Jacqueline Woodson is a prolific writer and I’ve seen her books in libraries for years. I have read many of her picture books to my children, and my girls especially liked, The Other Side. When I saw Each Kindness, I was immediately reminded of The Other Side. I have since discovered that they h...more
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74640
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...more
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“This is what kindness does, Ms.Albert said. Each little thing we do goes out, like a ripple, into the world.” 3 likes
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