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My Painted House, My Friendly Chicken, and Me
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My Painted House, My Friendly Chicken, and Me

4.21  ·  Rating Details ·  109 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
Full color photographs. "Hello, Stranger-Friend" begins Maya Angelou's story about Thandi, a South African Ndebele girl, her mischievous brother, her beloved chicken, and the astonishing mural art produced by the women of her tribe.  With never-before-seen photographs of the very private Ndebele women and their paintings, this unique book shows the passing of traditions fr ...more
Paperback, 48 pages
Published November 5th 1996 by Knopf Books for Young Readers (first published 1994)
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When it comes to this book I see Maya Angelou getting excited about writing and in particular writing Children books. We get to see the whimsical side of her and I wish I could have loved this and rated it 5 stars but I feel as though Maya fell short on this poem.

Instead of creating an original poem and incorporating illustrations or beautiful artwork instead she told a story through photographs. The photographs were already taken and
Dec 11, 2014 Bridget rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Bridget by: No One
There really isn't a whole lot I can say about this little picture book except the pictures were beyond beautifully taken, and of course it was beautifully written by one of my top favorite authors. There are very few authors that would be automatic pick ups for me and Maya Angelou is one of them. There have been maybe one or two books of Maya Angelou's that I wasn't able to get into at the time I tried to read them so I just set them aside. Majority of the books I have read by her I have enjoye ...more
Alexandra Russo
Jun 29, 2014 Alexandra Russo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This mocking, insightful, and beautifully told book depicts the life of a young girl, Thandi, in the Ndebele village in South Africa. The tone is friendly, wise, and joking; the writer speaks to the reader, calling her on the first page "stranger-friend" giving her a tour of the village and her life. The narrator seems wise beyond her years. Her best friend is a chicken, and she can tell the chicken all her secrets. The chicken has other uses, and the reader later finds out that chicken feathers ...more
Sarah Butler
Dec 01, 2014 Sarah Butler rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Eight-year old Thandi introduces readers to her thriving Ndebele village in South Africa. She shares her daily life including her hand painted house, her friendly chicken, and her annoying brother.

Maya Angelou is a master at expressing personal experiences through the perspective of culture echoing her auto-biographical literature. The language is simple and reflects the speech and the conversation true to a child of that age. The story portrays the child as a whole person not merely an undevelo
Mar 27, 2016 Jack rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My Painted House, My Friendly Chicken, and Me by Maya Angelouwith photographs by Margaret Courtney-Clarke is a story of Thandi, an Ndebele girl in South African. She is eight years old and her best friend is a chicken.
Full color photographs bring us into her village life and brings her village life closer to us building empathy and bridges.
Age Range: 3 - 7 years
Grade Level: Preschool - 2
This is a beautifully crafted Non-Fiction book about the life of Thandi, a young girl of the Ndebele people living in South Africa. Written in an almost poetic format by Maya Angelou and photographed by Margaret Courtney-Clarke, the layout and presentation of the words on the page worked really well for me. The first person narrative, told through the voice of the young girl works well in bringing a strong and moving message about culture and society of these people living on the fringes of a di ...more
The Styling Librarian
My Painted House, My Friendly Chicken, and Me by Maya Angelou and photographs by Margaret Courtney-Clarke
I had to share this book again. I was chatting with my assistant about how this book is one of those ideal books that can fit so many research units in addition to numerous topics…

I love the voice shared in this book. The photographs are poignant, beautiful, and a perfect fit with the gorgeous text. I’ve shared this book for years as a world awareness book to share with students.

When I share
This book is written by the noted African American novelist and poet, Maya Angelou and illustrated with photographs of scenes from Ndebele life. The narrator is eight year old Thandi, who describes her house, her friends and her activities in a cheerful, lively way. My daughter liked Thandi's sense of humor, especially in describing her frustrations with her young brother. The text is fairly long and may be a little too "belle lettre" for some young readers, but the pictures and colors of the te ...more
Hae Sun
This book gives us a glimpse of what life is like in a Ndebele village in Africa. This book is written in the point of view of Thandi, a little girl.

I said this was a non fiction book because it gives us facts about life in a Ndebele village. I would use this book instruction when I talk about diversity and life outside of the United State. It would be perfect for a mini lesson because it is short and engaging.
Jul 22, 2016 Christabelle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: africa
My oldest daughter says "I loved it!" My next daughter says it was boring. Perhaps a matter of perspective? It was fun getting inside the life of a kid in another part of the world. We lived the photography and the anecdotes of life outside our own. The only problem was that as I tried to read it aloud, all the kids kept clamoring to "Go back! I didn't finish looking at the pictures!" For those of us that liked it, it's definitely worth a re-read.
Nicole Cingiser
This book brings the reader into a South African village through the eyes of a young Ndebele girl named Thandi. Thandi shares many things about her culture emphasizing the way that the women paint the exteriors of their homes in elaborate patterns. The combination of beautiful, vibrant photos and Maya Angelou's narration make this book a joy to read. In addition, it is a great springboard for children to find similarities and differences between their lives and Thandi's.
This is another great book for my diversity collection. It's about a little girl who talks about her best friend. Her best friend happens to be a chicken. The photos are wonderful and show how this child lives where they are from. You also have to read this book differently then you read a book. You read across both pages and not one page at a time. I talked about how children don't all dress a like and that some kids weren't wearing much in the photos.
Sep 05, 2012 Rana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
While this book is a bit of a difficult read due to its different style of writing, it does dive into a very colorful life of a little girl, Thandi. This is a good book to get children discussing life in other cultures. I did not particularly care for it myself, but I do think it can still be a good book for some children.
Apr 28, 2010 Katy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love reading Angelou, and this children's book is an awesome reminder that children everywhere love their homes, families, and what are familiar. And, of course, the phonomenial photos, an essay unto itself. Angelou's depiction of a South African child has never left me.
Sep 30, 2008 Ida rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful book with delightful accompanying words. It brings back wonderful memories of the country from which I came. My children (young at the time) were lucky enough to have seen some of these incredible Ndebele homes which are so lovingly and amazingly painted.
Cherokee Maxwell
i leaern that everyone is the same
Dec 09, 2007 JoJo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who love people
I saw this and its color and appreciated a little look into someone else's tribe, world, secrets...which are not disclosed. get it for your kids.
Jan 08, 2014 Yanna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Apr 06, 2009 C rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s
I love this book--the words, the photos, the joy.
Aug 16, 2012 Arema rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My 4 year old daughter loves this book, and the vivid photography.
Amy Cobbs
Jul 25, 2015 Amy Cobbs rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Timeless! I appreciate how the pride of the Ndebele folk beams through Thandi's telling of her story. Powerful!
Turrean rated it really liked it
Oct 15, 2012
Talia rated it it was amazing
Apr 17, 2012
Bronson Lauper
Bronson Lauper rated it really liked it
Oct 01, 2008
Jim rated it it was amazing
Nov 19, 2013
Terry Nesmith
Terry Nesmith rated it it was amazing
Jul 12, 2012
Marie Michael
Marie Michael rated it it was amazing
Apr 30, 2013
Jadai rated it really liked it
Nov 08, 2008
Kelly Guinan
Kelly Guinan rated it really liked it
Aug 23, 2015
Gina rated it it was amazing
Feb 09, 2012
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Maya Angelou, born Marguerite Ann Johnson April 4, 1928 in St. Louis, Missouri, was an American poet, memoirist, actress and an important figure in the American Civil Rights Movement. In 2001 she was named one of the 30 most powerful women in America by Ladies Home Journal. Maya Angelou is known for her series of six autobiographies, starting with I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, (1969) which was ...more
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