A Chair for My Mother
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A Chair for My Mother (The Rosa Books #1)

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  11,802 ratings  ·  400 reviews
After their home is destroyed by a fire, Rosa, her mother and grandmother save their coins to buy a really comfortable chair for all to enjoy. "A superbly conceived picture book expressing the joyful spirit of a loving family."--Horn Book.
Paperback, (25th Anniversary Edition) (Reading Rainbow Book), 32 pages
Published January 23rd 2007 by Greenwillow Books (first published January 1st 1982)
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Katie Carson
Author Vera B. Williams does a wonderful job telling the tale of a young girl and her mother and their dedication to restoring their lives back to normal following a fire that burned all their possessions in their home. The idea of having your home and catch on fire and losing all your possessions is a fear that many of us have. It's a terrible circumstance that everyone can consider how they would handle and begin to rebuild their life after. This common fear and questioning make this book a pe...more
Oct 29, 2007 Malbadeen rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people that detest the phrase "begining, middle
A book about a chair!
It's about a chair!
A house has burnt down and people have jobs and etc, etc, but the book is about a chair and the people that sit in it.
I LOVE this book!
I also love this book because it flies in the face of the ever present argument that we force the "beginning, middle, end" and "first, next, then, finally" format on students.
"HA! SEE, SEE what i mean"?!?! I want to say when i read this book. I want to say it to everyone everywhere. See, even in kids books. It's there, th...more
A Chair for My Mother
Reading Level: Easy Reader, Ages 4-8
Genre: Fiction, Realistic Fiction

This is a sweet story intended for elementary age students. The story touches on themes such as family life, saving, hard work, and hardship to an extent. The story is told from the perspective of a little girl who lives with her mother. The mom appears to be a single mother with close extended family that lives close by, with the grandmother being one of the three main characters. The story be...more
Toree Howe
•This story is about a tragedy and how the family is coping with the aftermath. It is about saving for something special and the importance of friends and family.
•Many children don’t have everything they need. I like how this story gives an example of one little girl but focuses on the important things in her life.
•This can be used with children to start a discussion of the important things in their lives and how it is important to do things for others.

Read aloud for 1st through 3rd. Used to le...more
This is another one of my favorites. For years I dreamed of saving a great big jar of coins. Only now am I actually doing it (with the Staffer of course). Anyway, there's a little girl, and there's a fire, and she lives with her mom and grandma, and her mom is so tired after work and has to sit in a kitchen chair to rest, so they save up all their coins and...
L-Crystal Wlodek
A Chair for My Mother is for kindergarten-third grade students and is a Caldecott Honor book (1983). This book is about a girl named Rosa, her mother, and grandmother who live together and live from paycheck to paycheck after their home and possessions were destroyed by a fire. They decide to save any extra money in a big jar until they can afford to buy one big comfortable chair that all three of them can enjoy.

This story is heartwarming and tender and has themes of love, family, strength, and...more
Sherrie Gallagher
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
L12_luisespinoza Espinoza
This is a heartwarming story about a little girl, her mother, and grandmother that live together in an apartment. A fire destroys their apartment along with all their possessions and when they are able to move into a new apartment, their neighbors bring them furniture, food, and kitchenware. After all the donations are given, they decide to save coins from her mother's tips from working at the Blue Tile Diner to purchase "A wonderful, beautiful, fat, soft armchair". The little girl also contribu...more
This book is enjoyable for so many reasons. A young girl is trying to help her mother save up coins in a jar to buy a comfortable chair for her family. This book is perfect for my school. Children from low income families can relate to the fact that things don't always come easy and some things we have to work hard for. The family also looks hispanic. This also suits my community. Often children have a hard time relating to books without someone from their own culture. How nice to see a positive...more
Reading Level: Preschool -2nd grade
Audio/video format - Part of the Reading Rainbow video series. An authentic video representation of the original story and pictures without unnesessary animation.
A young grade-school aged girl narrates this story about her family losing their home to a fire. Family and friends come together with donated items for their new home and then the girl, her mother and grandmother work together to save and raise money for a comfy chair. The illustrations are a perfect...more
Kimberly Parrott
This was an inspiring story for me and I'm sure it was for anyone else who has read it. This story teaches patience and kindness seeing as the characters lost everything in a house fire and took the time to fill an entire jar full of coins. Even though all they are saving up for is a nice chair to relax in, it represents so much more than just a chair. It represents patience and hard work to reach something you really want. Children should really read this book or hear this book being read becau...more
When I get to the end of A Chair for My Mother, I want to immediately flip back to the beginning and read it over again. There is just something about the story, of a little girl and her mother saving up--slowly--to buy a chair to replace the one they lost in a fire that destroyed their house, that gets right into my heart. It would be an excellent choice for a discussion of needs and wants, as well as describing levels of community (e.g. family, friends, neighborhood). The vibrant illustrations...more
Illustrated by: Vera B. Williams
Published: 1982
Fiction, Picture book

The story is narrated by a little girl. Her mom works at the Blue Tile Diner and occasionally the little girl will visit the diner and work. Half of the money she makes at the diner goes into a large jar. When her mom comes home from the work the little girl counts any change the mom makes. She is aware that sometimes her mom is tired when she comes home and sometimes she is in a happy mood. The girl is saving her change...more
Anna Summers
In the book, A Chair for My Mother, a little girl and her family lose all of their belongings in a house fire. They try to save money to buy a big, comfortable chair for their home. They put their extra coins in a glass jar, and eventually they go out and buy the chair. Although this book has a simple story line and plot, there is a lot of depth woven into the story. This book is a great example of a non-traditional, working class family that works hard to achieve a goal. The closeness of this f...more
Kristina Whitt
A Chair For My Mother is a short story about a little girl whose mother, grandmother and herself are saving up to buy a comfortable chair for their home. The mother works long hours at a diner, the little girl is sometimes given a small job there too. All the money they save goes into a very large jar to save up for their chair. The book talks about why they need a new chair, the families house caught on fire not long ago and everything inside was ruined by the fire. While they were relieved tha...more
Shannon Alexander
Rosa and her family lose all of their belongings to a house fire. Nobody is hurt in the fire, but they are forced to start over. Rosa and her family (her mom and her grandmother) move into a new apartment. It's nice but it's very empty. The community bands together and gives many items of furniture to the family because they know that they have lost everything to the fire. There is just one thing missing - a comfy chair for Rosa's hard working mother to come home and relax on. The family has bee...more
We had mixed reviews. Some students thought this story was a bit short and boring. Some students don't like fire, and they did not enjoy the story. Other students, really enjoyed this book. One student made a connection, because she earns money, too. Some students liked that the characters worked hard to earn money and buy something they really wanted.
At first I thought this book would be about children making a chair for their mom. At first the title was very misleading. Instead this book talked about a mother and daughter for worked at a restaurant. The child was young so she would just do simple duties such as fill the salt and pepper. Every night after they got home they would count the tips and put the coins in a jar. Then further into the book you find out that they are saving up the money to buy a really nice big chair because their ho...more
Kathleen Pine
Rosa's home was destroyed in a fire, so she and her mother and grandmother save up all of their change to one day buy a comfortable chair for them all to enjoy. Rosa's mother works late hours and saves her tips, and Rosa occasionally goes and helps work too to make extra money. Her grandmother hunts for bargains and puts the savings from her shopping in the jar. Rosa recalls the sad story of the fire and talks about her their friends and family all came together to help them through the disaster...more
A Chair for My Mother is a heartwarming book! It is a story about a girl who lives with her mother and grandmother. The little girl and mother are trying to save money to buy a new chair because they lost everything they had in a house fire. Every day the mother comes home from her job as a waitress and puts her tips in their jar. When the girl goes to work with her mom, she also puts the money she makes in the jar. The girl, the mother, and the grandmother count the mother’s tips from the kitch...more
Nice pictures and a cute story but nothing that really stood out for us. We forgot about it once we were done reading it, and it wasn't asked for again. That's how I know the kids really like a book, when they constantly request it.
Alicia Scully
This story shows a family surviving during hard times and staying positive all the while. Rosa's previous home burned up in a fire and now her family is getting back on track. They're saving up as much as they can to buy a comfy chair since that is the only piece of furniture that their loving community hasn't donated. This book shows a lot of family and community affection as well as the reality of living a lower/middle class life where every cent counts. There's a lot of text per page, so this...more
Nicholas Linsk
This book was about a mother, daughter, and grandmother who each day counted and put all of their spare change in a large bottle to save so that one day they could buy a large chair so her mom could sit and enjoy. One day there house burned down and they lost everything. At the end of the story they finally did get the chair that they always dreamed of thanks to some kind people. The illustrations in this book were very simple, but very well done. The words in this story explained more than the...more
Michelle Lasser
A Chair for my Mother is a lovely story with a theme of kindness. While a little girl, her grandmother, and her mother are going through a very tough time, everyone in town including her mother's boss at work is going out of their way to help the family. The only thing the family does't have yet is a nice soft chair. The story demonstrates teamwork and how finishing a task can be a lot easier when everyone is contributing. On some of the pages, the illustrator has designed beautiful borders to r...more
Britt Kitko
Summary:After a fire destroys their home and possessions, Rosa, her mother, and grandmother save and save until they can afford to buy one big, comfortable chair that all three of them can enjoy. After their home is destroyed by a fire, Rosa, her mother and grandmother save their coins to buy a really comfortable chair for all to enjoy. "A superbly conceived picture book expressing the joyful spirit of a loving family."––Horn Book.

- Reading level- Late transitional
- Genre-Fiction
- Topic...more
Samantha Brumbaugh
Summary: After a fire destroys their home and possessions, Rosa, her mother, and grandmother save and save until they can afford to buy one big, comfortable chair that all three of them can enjoy. After their home is destroyed by a fire, Rosa, her mother and grandmother save their coins to buy a really comfortable chair for all to enjoy. "A superbly conceived picture book expressing the joyful spirit of a loving family.
Genre: Fictional Picture Book
Reading Level:Fluent, This book is fluent with p...more
Jenna Dillon
Summary: After a fire destroys their home and possessions, Rosa, her mother, and grandmother save and save until they can afford to buy one big, comfortable chair that all three of them can enjoy. After their home is destroyed by a fire, Rosa, her mother and grandmother save their coins to buy a really comfortable chair for all to enjoy.
Genre: realistic fiction
Reading level: This book is for a fluent reader because it has multiple lines of text on each page. The pages included complex sentences...more
Lexile: 640
Age level: Upper elementary
Genre: Picture book, contemporary realistic fiction
Award: Caldecott Award

-Main Characters: Rosa, her mother, and her grandmother
-Point of View: from Rosa
-Setting: New York, the diner, and apartment

A Chair for My Mother tells the story of a young girl who is raised by a single mother who works long hours at a diner called the Blue Tile. She often visits her mother, helping to wash the salts and peppers and fill up the ketchup bottles. She is compensated f...more
Jenna Spinazzola
genre: picture book

audience: k - 3rd

topic: grandmothers

theme: how families stick together through rough times/ grandmothers always by your side

curricular uses: read aloud, independent reading

reading level: early readers

literary elements: dialogue

social issue: destruction of fire to homes

illustrations: i like the illustrations. they are cute and support the text.

thoughts: I really enjoyed this book. It tells how a family can have everything and then nothing in a split second. A chair for my mothe...more
I have read this book before! I actually read this book in Spanish and I loved it! I loved the pictures, the story and because of it, I remember that I started saving my money as well in a little jar. (: Pictures are nice, filled with vivid colors that capture the reader’s attention. The patters and the paint/watercolor detail to the pictures made it stand out. One thing I noticed, was the over simplification of the harsh times she’s living though. It sounds like she doesn’t know or understand l...more
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MCC Children's Li...: A Chair for My Mother 1 1 Apr 04, 2012 06:48PM  
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Graduate of Black Mountain College, North Carolina, where she majored in graphic art. In her own words, she has "done graphic art, school teaching, children-raising [she has two daughters and a son], has run a bakery and been a cook in schools and restaurants." (from back flap of book)

You can read much more about this author here or here
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