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Irena Sendler and the Children of the Warsaw Ghetto

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  478 ratings  ·  83 reviews
Irena Sendler was a diminutive Polish social worker who helped spirit more than four hundred children out of the Warsaw Ghetto during World War II. Using toolboxes, ambulances, and other ingenious measures, Irena Sendler defied the Nazis and risked her own life by saving and then hiding Jewish children. Her secret list of the children's real identities was kept safe, burie ...more
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published February 14th 2011 by Holiday House (first published March 10th 1984)
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Lisa Vegan
This is the eighth book I’ve read by Susan Goldman Rubin, and I have a ninth one on reserve at the libary. All have received 4 or 5 stars from me. She’s fast becoming one of my favorite non-fiction children’s picture book authors.

I’m deliberately reading this book and Irena's Jars of Secrets on the same day.

I was particularly touched by Irena’s story and by the way it was told by this author. It’s truly an amazing story about a remarkable woman, someone who I’m ashamed to say I’d never before he
Kate Willis
Another picture book I was quarantined with, and I'm so glad I was, otherwise I may have missed a gem. ;)

The illustrations are beautifully done, and I learned so much more about this amazing, brave woman and the resilient children (and adults) she saved. I was especially moved by the account of the records she kept hoping to reunite families one day. <3

Given the serious subject matter, I would recommend this book for older readers or with parental guidance for young ones.
Plan for about an hour to really give this book justice. Such a powerful, true story!
Jan 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I want to read more books about this brave woman. This particular book is written for children with beautiful pictures. Ms. Sendler was a young woman who smuggled Jewish children out of the Warsaw ghetto during World War Two. She saved hundreds of children using ingenious and daring methods. This woman should be honored for her courage.
Ardea Smith
Aug 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reading-log
Title / Author / Publication Date: Irena Sendler and the Children of the Warsaw Ghetto/Susan Goldman Rubin/2011

Genre: Non-Fiction

Format: Hardcover

Plot Summary: Irena Sendler was a diminutive Polish social worker who helped spirit more than four hundred children out of the Warsaw Ghetto during World War II. Using toolboxes, ambulances, and other ingenious measures, Irena Sendler defied the Nazis and risked her own life by saving and then hiding Jewish children. Her secret list of the children's
Apr 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
After watching The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler I was curious to learn more. I was happy to see that there was a picture book biography of her life. I was pleasantly surprised because I haven't found that many picture books set during that time period--World War II. The Holocaust isn't a subject that is easily taught or presented to young readers, the subject matter itself is difficult even for adults. (There are *some* great picture books out there, I know, I've read them. But there aren't ...more
Mary Lou Carolan
Jun 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Irena Sendler didn’t see herself as a hero. She credited heroism to the children she rescued and the parents who set them free. Irena Sendler and the Children of the Warsaw Ghetto is a glowing example of why picture books are not just for the young. In fact, using illustrated narrative to tell the story of a difficult time in history, sets the tone and helps to place the event in time through pictures, while teaching children the importance of historical events. Sendler was a young Catholic soci ...more
Alex  Baugh
I know I've done a number of nonfiction books about Irena Sendler or fiction in which she played a part. It seems to me that while they all tell the basic story of how Irena entered the Warsaw Ghetto during WWII to help the Jewish children there, they all add new information about this remarkable woman. Irena Sendler and the Children of the Warsaw Ghetto is not exception, and is filled with information for the older picture book readers.

After the merciless bombing of Warsaw by the German Luftwaf
Julie Suzanne
Jul 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
What I "really liked" was the story rather than the book. I had never heard of Irena Sendler, and this was an impressive and empowering story of a righteous gentile who saved hundreds of children from certain death, even though she thinks this was not heroic but rather just "normal." Wow. She and her true story are amazing, and I feel blessed to have heard it, but I wouldn't say that the book itself was terrific. I don't even know to whom I'd recommend it other than have it in my classroom as a ...more

I Was Taught By My Father That When Someone Is Drowning, You Don't Ask If They Can Swim, You Just Jump In And Help.

I Always Sat With The Jews Showing Them My Solidarity.

It's Always On My Mind That I Couldn't Do More. This Regret Will Follow Me To My Death.

My Heart Told Me To.

TRAVELED TO // Warsaw Ghetto, Poland
MET ALONG THE WAY // Irena Sendler, The Children Of The Warsaw Ghetto & Zegota
This is the amazing and true story of a righteous gentile woman who saved hundreds of Jews in Warsaw Poland during WWII. She was a Roman Catholic Social Worker living in Warsaw. She saw that Jews were treated so terribly and knew that she should and could help. So she pretended to be a nurse and went into the Warsaw Ghetto. She secreted out as many as 400 children and led a resistance movement that assisted thousands of Jews in escaping the German occupied country.

The most astounding and breatht
James Potts
This story takes place in the time frame of World War Two. It follows a woman named Irena Sendler, a social worker. When the news broke that World War Two has started she knew she had to jump into action and help save those that she could. Irena and her friend dressed at nurses in white gowns and hats. They were saving children from the Warsaw Ghetto by seeking them out through an ambulance. This story has a very powerful message. It informs children readers about the events that took place duri ...more
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I found Irena’s story very good and her courageous acts to rescue the Jewish children out of the Warsaw ghetto. I loved how the author wrote using her own words to describe what she did and how she did it. Through her bravery, she was able to rescue over 400 Jewish children and through the organization she worked with, over 2,000. She had saved many lives and risked her own life. One of her quotes I really liked at the beginning of the book was, “I was taught by my father that w
May 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I read this book and Marcia Vaughan's Irena's Jar of Secrets to see which one would work best for my own children. Both are completely worthy books, but I would say that this one is more suited for students a bit older than those who might need the simpler text in Vaughan's book. Rubin's book (this one) is more detailed and has longer text, though both cover nearly the same relevant information. It does include an afterword with a photograph of Irena in old age. The illustrations in both are exc ...more
Ellen Curran
May 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is an important and largely unknown story of a woman who, along with many other brave Poles, saved 2500 Jewish children during the Holocaust. I did find myself wishing that the story had been written by someone actually involved, it read as somewhat more of a scholarly text than a biography. Still, the actions of this woman are well worth knowing about.
Geena Ruggeri
Jun 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book was great. I actually read irenas children which wasn't in Goodreads, but it is about the same woman. She saved 2,500 children in the Warsaw ghetto. It was an amazing story with real pictures inside the book. If I ever teach a class of middle school students I will without a doubt incorporate this book into a lesson. I loved everything about this novel and will probably read it again.
Hannah Marshall
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was so inspired by reading this book!! The courage and bravery that Irena had is amazing! I’m not very big into biographies but I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I can see this being a good book to read out loud to and class and having great discussions afterward. I would definitely add this to my future classroom library.

Genre: Biography
Reading level:5-6
Dec 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Genre: Historical FIction
Grade Level: 5-6

"Irena Sendler and the Children of the Warsaw Ghetto," by Susan Goldman Rubin is a great historical fiction book. I would highly recommend having this book in a classroom library. It would be a great book to quickly read through to get a beginning concept of what was happening during WWII.
A rather odd mix of narrative and interview snippets. This isn't really a cohesive presentation of Irena Sendler's story; the facts, names, and dates are just kind of presented page by page. Irena Sendler's story is fascinating, but sadly, I have yet to find an author with the skill to convey it the way it deserves to be told.
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a story that will resonate well with children & adults alike. I was aware of Irene’s story thru other books but this author deals with the content in a respectful & delicate manner. Will recommend to other educators. ...more
Nov 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great picture book telling Irena Sendler's story rescuing children from the Warsaw Ghetto. Definitely for older children.
Mar 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A moving book depicting true circumstances makes this book appealing for both the historical side and the story itself.
Mar 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"Irena immediately joined the resistance movement of the Polish Socialist Party."

" "The Germans were terrified of any epidemics,' said Irena. 'Therefore they allowed the Polish authorities to take care of the health and sanitation int eh ghetto. Passes allowing us to enter the ghetto were given to us by the Warsaw Disease Control Department.' "

Organization: Council for Aid to the Jews; underground organization with the code name Zegota

"Nazi guards ordered children they suspected were Jewish to r
Daniel L.
When Someone Is Drowing, You Just Jump in and Help

“I was taught by my father that when someone is drowning, you don’t ask if they can swim. You just jump in and help.” Irena Sendler was never anyone to brag—she always said that she simply did what she had to do. What she did, however, was nothing short of extraordinary. A young Catholic Polish social worker from Warsaw, she saved the lives of at least 2,000 Jewish children, smuggling them out of the Warsaw Ghetto, an unbearably overcrowded, uns
This is the story of a woman who organized the rescue of thousands of children from the Warsaw Ghetto during WWII. Probably very few people have heard of Irena Sendler, but her story is moving and well worth hearing. Her courage and undying belief that all people are equal can serve as an inspiration for anyone.

I loved reading about Irena Sendler and what she managed to accomplish for others through courage and a great deal of love for others. Her story will definitely stay with me. And I loved
Shannon Atako
Feb 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book shines a spotlight on the relatively unknown story of Irena Sendler, a small yet courageous Polish nurse who saved thousands of Jewish children from the Warsaw ghetto during World War II. Whether under floorboards, coffins, or in boxes, Irena smuggled these children away from certain doom, risking her own life in the process. Her tale of heroism is interspersed with actual quotes that breathe an air of authenticity and life into the story.

This book would fit nicely into a 4th or 5th g
In the midst of the inhumanity and horrors of the Third Reich, Irena Sendler risked her life to save those of Polish children. She smuggled them out of the country and into Catholic homes in coffins, body bags, under the floorboards of a truck, even tiny ones in a toolbox. She created lists containing each child's birth name alongside his or her "new", Catholic name, then buried the lists, safely encased in glass jars, under a friend's apple tree. Over the course of the war, she saved over 2500 ...more
Oct 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
Adding to the body of Holocaust literature, this story of an incredibly brave Polish woman who risked her life countless times in order to smuggle out from the ghetto in Warsaw at least 400 children is inspiring. Irena Sendler, a Gentile with a keen sense of right and wrong, acted when others were reluctant to do so simply out of her recognition that it was the right thing to do. To do nothing when the Nazis rounded up the Jews would have been wrong in her eyes. The author lends an immediacy to ...more
Maggie Mattmiller
May 14, 2014 rated it liked it
I like the content of this book, which is to say I really like the story of Irena Sendler. I did not know who she was before, and now I have a new hero.

That being said, I had a hard time giving this book more than 3 stars, because I stick to the words attached to the stars, and while I liked the book, I didn't love it. I don't know who (what age) the target audience is here, as there are a lot of words, and honestly, I had a hard time really focusing and not just skimming the words. It didn't ho
A picture book with source notes and an index! Wow! Rubin tells the amazing story of a Polish Catholic social worker who rescued 400 children and whose organization rescued a total of 2,000 children over the five and a half years of German occupation in Poland. The inside flap calls the oil paintings "lush," and I don't mean to criticize the quality of the illustrations, only that when I hear "lush" I think greenery, and most of the pictures are quite dark, capturing the smuggling activities at ...more
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Susan Goldman Rubin is the author of more than forty-five books for young people, including Andy Warhol: Pop Art Painter; The Yellow House: Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin Side by Side; and Edward Hopper: Painter of Light and Shadow. A long-time instructor in the UCLA Extension Writers Program, Susan Goldman Rubin lives in Malibu, California.

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