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Big Box

3.92  ·  Rating Details ·  390 Ratings  ·  90 Reviews
Here's what happens when parents, teachers, and other adults try to determine the boundaries of personal freedom for a group of youngsters, "who just can't handle their freedom." To make these youngsters abide by their rules, the grown-ups create a world inside a box. A world with toys and games, and treats and gifts, and all kinds of stuff they think children need to be h ...more
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published September 10th 1999 by Jump At The Sun
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Cindy Sa
Apr 13, 2014 Cindy Sa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The big box
This book dose not have any cute paintings. All of things are painting by an real way. In my mind, maybe some children will not like it because of the painting style. But the content of this books is very wonderful.
There are three children live inside the big brown box. They are Patty and Mickey and Liza Sue. They are two girls and one boy. Patty is an naughty girl. She spoke in the library, sang in the class, and went to the restroom four times. Mickey is a mischievous boy. He wrote
...more
Shannon
Aug 05, 2008 Shannon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite stories. My son LOVED to read have this book read to him. A book about finding yourself even when everyone else is trying to put you into that same "box".
Kayla Fjellbo
The Big Box is not your average children's book. It starts out with three children playing and their parents don't think they can handle their freedom. So they put each child in a big brown box with a door that has three locks, and a window that keeps them inside. The big box reminds more of a psych ward then an actual box that the kids' are in.

The illustrations in this book look they were drawn by a child, but that's what I love about the book. You can tell the author definitely had a kid's bra
...more
Cat Castillo
Apr 18, 2016 Cat Castillo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The reason I chose this book for our social justice week was first because of the illustrations, the odd postmodern, even folk looking art style was both beautiful and strange. I was judging the book by its cover but that's okay, because the story is extremely powerful. The title page is a giant double page spread with an outside scene with birds and rabbits and other critters. The font of the title looks stamped on, just as it did on the box from the cover scene. This font makes bold and offici ...more
Emily Nunez-Eddy
Nov 09, 2014 Emily Nunez-Eddy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“The Big Box” by Toni Morrison is a fascinating book that explores child versus adult ideas. In “The Big Box”, three children — Patty, Mickey, and Liza Sue — live in a big box, with paintings, shutters that keep the day out, a swing set, and all the toys they could ever want. The box has three locks and a door that only goes one way. For the reader, this box seems like a safe haven for the kids, their own personal playground, secluded from any adults. As the story goes on, a haunting truth unfo ...more
Brandy Reed
Oct 24, 2014 Brandy Reed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Parents are all different. Sometimes children grow up with extremely strict and disciplined adults who have a lot of rules for their kids to follow. On the other hand sometimes children have relaxed parents who might not care at all what their children do. In the children’s book, “The Big Box” by Toni Morrison, the storyline follows three different kids and their journey while being a child. All of them have parents who don’t want to deal with disruptive, crazy, active, and energetic children. ...more
Bianca Arias
Parents are all different. Sometimes children grow up with extremely strict and disciplined adults who have a lot of rules for their kids to follow. On the other hand sometimes children have relaxed parents who might not care at all what their children do. In the children’s book, “The Big Box” by Toni Morrison, the storyline follows three different kids and their journey while being a child. All of them have parents who don’t want to deal with disruptive, crazy, active, and energetic children. I ...more
Brenda  Roman
Nov 17, 2014 Brenda Roman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Patty, Mickey, and Liza Sue are trying to express their freedom while adults/grown-ups around them is trying to restrict their freedom. They are all placed in the same big box because the parents are trying to determine what is best for them, creating a world for them inside the box. In the end, together they break free of the big box. “Who says they can’t handle their freedom?”

The illustrations from the book quite hard to understand and the book itself was tough to keep up with the plot and cha
...more
Kathryn Herbert
The Big Box, written by Toni and Slade Morrison, is not your typical children's book. It is about three children named Patty, Mickey, and Liza Sue who become forced to live in a box with three locks on the door because they are unable to handle their freedom. Out of all three children, Patty is the naughtiest. This is because she likes to go to the bathroom four times, talk loud in the library, and sing in class. Mickey, the boy of the group, is also troublesome and disruptive. He likes to yell ...more
Tory Haberman
Oct 23, 2014 Tory Haberman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Big Box by Toni Morrison and Slade Morrison is about 3 young kids named Patty, Mickey, and Liza Sue who are trying to express their freedom while adults/grown-ups around them are trying to restrict them from their freedom. They are all placed in the same big box, figuratively speaking, because the parents are trying to determine what is best for them, creating a world for them inside the box. In the end, the children break free of the big box leaving an opened-ended question of “Who says the ...more
Hannah
Dec 03, 2014 Hannah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This grim tale tells how Patty, Mickey, and Liza Sue are banished to live in a box because “they can't handle their freedom.” Their transgressions are silly acts of disobedience as the children begin to test the boundaries of society. No one is willing to rescue them from the fated box, in fact, their mother's and father's are more than happy to confine them themselves.

This books looks at how society places constraints and rules on children, forcing them to grow up too fast. The adults fear the
...more
Lindsey Hulsey
Feb 12, 2017 Lindsey Hulsey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Not a very colorful book, but has a good story behind it. Book for teaching and learning lessons.
Nomre
Apr 18, 2016 Nomre rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The big box is a book about three children who have a lot of energy and display somewhat disruptive behavior and are told by their parents that they just don't know how to handle their freedom. The parents put them in a box with windows, furniture and a door with three locks that only opens one way. The parents come and visit once a week and bring them all of their favorite foods and toys.
The illustrations are on full page spreads which allow the reader to feel as if they are experiencing the s
...more
Ruqayya Jarad
Jan 28, 2015 Ruqayya Jarad rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: the-big-box
The big Box by Toni Morrison with Slade Morrison,Illustrator by Giselle Potter.


This picture story with special need kids is a great book for teachers,parents and students. The story is about three aggressive,disruptive and energetic kids who don't know how to handle their freedom. So educators and grown-up decided to put each one in a big brown box that has carpets, curtains and beanbag chairs, but the door has three big locks that only opens one way. A lot of rules are listed to help these kid
...more
Kelly Tessitore
Jan 25, 2012 Kelly Tessitore rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Big Box does a great job of showing that sometimes kids can be be more wise than adults. Adults can be narrow-minded and stuck in their ways even though they believe they are all-knowing. The children in this book are portrayed as wild by the adults, but Morrison portrays them as good children who just like to have a little fun. These children are locked up inside a big box and given all the necessary material items needed to live. They have slides,TVs, beds, food, and much more. But these c ...more
Alana
Mar 29, 2012 Alana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Big Box, written by Toni Morrison, is a story about about Patty, Mickey, and Liza Sue. The story is written in a poetic way, with rhyme and repetition, which made the story flow and come together. All of the illustrations are two-page spreads, with the text always on the right hand side without any borders or frames. Each child was described one by one and then put into one box because they couldn't handle their freedom; they were seen as wild by adults (which were described as people who lo ...more
Jay Bushara
Feb 13, 2013 Jay Bushara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book like this doesn't get made without the influence of a Pulitzer Prize winner (it's co-authored, at least nominally, by Toni Morrison and her son), still it's kind of thrilling to witness it running around in the wild, a little menacing, a little out of control. Though it would probably remain a little unintelligible also, if the great Giselle Potter were not around to color in the metaphors, because this is finally a fable about all of the ways we trap, or abandon, or surrender our childre ...more
Margie Potter
Feb 13, 2011 Margie Potter rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: grades-k-3rd
The Big Box by Toni Morrison was a MUST read on my children's list of books after reading the reviews. I thought I would read it and dream up a good lesson plan for one of my classes. As I turned the pages of the Big Box I thought, "Ummm, I kinda don't like this book." I continued to turn the pages and sorrow filled my lungs. I could not handle it any longer and quickly flipped through the remaining two kids stories. I did not enjoy it one bit. I feel like I am missing some really good metaphori ...more
Julie Suzanne
Jun 14, 2009 Julie Suzanne rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: adults, parents, teachers, "square pegs"
Recommended to Julie by: a UU minister
A book off the UU minister's bookshelf--I found it depressing, disturbing, and leaving me with a lot to think about. I suppose Morrison's box represents the proverbial round holes into which we expect/teach our kids to conform as we sand & file away the corners of the children's personalities with rules, regulations, and expectations. I am still wondering about the references to the visits by the parents who bestow upon the pent up children expensive gifts and representations of the outside ...more
Ashleigh
Nov 17, 2014 Ashleigh rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rdg-291
In “The Big Box”, three children- Patty, Mickey, and Lisa Sue- live in a big box, with paintings, shutters that keep the day out, a swing set, and all the toys they could ever want. The box has three locks and it only opens one way. A safe haven for the kids, their own personal playground, secluded from any adults. But as the story goes on a haunting truth unfolds: The kids are sent to the Box by their parents, teachers, or neighbors because they could not handle their freedom.

The idea of growi
...more
Michael Young
Nov 13, 2011 Michael Young rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-lit-2011-12
Genre: Picture Book

Rating: *****
Wow! What a simple book that really makes you think. I love how Morrison described people from completely different backgrounds but common struggles. The questions that arise from a reading are great for discussion or tie-ins with novels with similar concepts.

Summary:
Three 'children' are sent away to live in a big box because they are irresponsible. However, when the meaning of freedom and responsibility come into question, Patty and Mickey and Liza Sue question
...more
Edward Creter
This classic tale reads as fiction, but is actually about us. It's a wake-up call for parents to treat their kids better than they have in the past. It focuses on three kids, who are taught to do as society tells them is "appropriate" behavior so the kids can be loved. When the kids stand up for themselves saying they are as they are, and that they are just fine, the parents understand...or do they? Society puts the kids in a big box, a room with a door opening out one way only, so kids have to ...more
Elizabeth
Dec 29, 2008 Elizabeth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This picture storybook tells the story of three youngsters whose failure to follow the rules of the adults in their world lands them in a big brown box. Their parents try to mimic the outside world for them by bringing them candy, toys and reproductions of nature. However, the children want their freedom! Somehow all the goodies their parents bring do not extinguish this need. The benefits of freedom are highlighted by the pleasures felt by animals in the wild. Children will delight in the whims ...more
Matthew
Jun 05, 2011 Matthew rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was a nice poem I guess. It reminded me of something that Jeff Kinney said that I don't particularly agree with in most cases. Jeff referenced a shelf of picture books in his local bookstore and said, "Those books are for well-intentioned grandparents." This might have been one of the books on that shelf. People who are looking for it will see the metaphor and understand what she's getting at, but an unassisted child won't. They'd be bored. They might recognize the brand names that Morrison ...more
Honah Miller
The first thing I noticed when I picked up this book was that the actual shape of the book reflected the title. The book is larger than most picture books I've read, and in a square shape like a box. The end papers reminded me of a wallpaper style, with random images ranging from bow ties, sunflowers, to a basketball. The author uses a rhythmic style of writing where every other line rhymes. This is appealing to kids because it makes reading the book, especially aloud, more engaging to listen to ...more
Hailey Phay
Nov 30, 2014 Hailey Phay rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story is about Patty, Mickey, and Liza Sue and is written in a very poetic way, with a lot rhyme and repetition. These kids are described one by one then put into a box because they can’t handle their freedom. They are seen as wild by adults so to contain them they put them into the big brown box. These three children are from different ethnic backgrounds, but they all have qualities in common. This story shows children that they are free to be who they want to be. All of the illustrations a ...more
Sarah Finley
I feel like I'm missing something after reading this book... I'm left a little confused. I get that the children are wild and the adults don't think that they don't deserve freedom. But it doesn't make sense to me. This book isn't realistic and maybe I'm missing some sort of metaphor. Why would Toni Morrison chose to put the children in a box? Do these children have some sort of special need and are being put in a special education classroom? I'm left with a lot of questions so I didn't really e ...more
Molly Mardany
The book is landscape, the end pages just have random pictures all on it, giving no hint of what the book is about. This book is filled with double page full bleed pictures with the writing off to the side. This book is kind of about the different minds of children and adults. All the adults say that they are acting inappropriately, but the kids are just having good fun. They get locked up with all the things they need to have fun, but for some reason it is not enough. Freedom is not about the c ...more
Lynette Wells
Apr 18, 2011 Lynette Wells rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this story. In this story there were a lot of rhyming and repetition. This story is also from a child's perspective. I like how the story was based on 3 different views that children have. If they do something that someone else feels is wrong that get locked in a room that has a one way door. I also like how when it explains each child it shows what their own room would look like. Also in every illustration that has an adult they have a disappointing face. Most of the pictures w ...more
Thomas Anselin
This book is about freedom and how kids will be kids and I think the illistrations help this theme by looking very wild and free. The images are always very wild in the back and lots of green and it gives a wilderness feel to the kids misbehaivor. All the kids are exciting to follow as they are usally up to no good. I think it's important to give children freedom as long as they use in the right way and they should be able to play as long as they're not breaking things are causeing trouble for o ...more
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Toni Morrison (born Chloe Anthony Wofford), is an American author, editor, and professor who won the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature for being an author "who in novels characterized by visionary force and poetic import, gives life to an essential aspect of American reality."

Her novels are known for their epic themes, vivid dialogue, and richly detailed African American characters; among the best k
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