CM . . .
. Volume XXI Number 5. . . .October 3, 2014 |
Compassion is truly at the heart of The Cardboard Shack Beneath the Bridge and It’s Hard Not to Stare: Helping Children Understand Disabilities, two books that are part of the “Compassion Series” created by Tim Huff. The books, which center on issues related to homelessness and disabilities, encourage children to “look at their world through the lens of compassion and understanding, rather than assumption, judgment or fear.”
Huff’s outreach efforts and advocacy for the poor, oppressed, misunderstood and marginalized provide the foundation for this series. Huff is the co-founder of StreetLevel, a registered charity that advocates on behalf of homelessness and poverty issues that exist across the nation.
Bright-coloured illustrations, offset by greyscale illustrated backgrounds, bring the rhyming stanzas to life. Huff presents issues related to homelessness and disabilities in an easy-to-understand language that children can comprehend. The illustrations connect readers to what they may see and experience in their day-to-day life.
Included at the end of both books is a page-by-page discussion guide for parents, teachers, and caregivers. In The Cardboard Shack Beneath the Bridge, Huff provides additional information and insights of those who are homeless. Thought-provoking questions bring the reader into the shoes of the characters portrayed throughout the book. The discussion guide included in It’s Hard Not to Stare: Helping Children Understand Disabilities was prepared and written by Jan Fukumoto who has more than three decades of experiences with students with exceptionalities. The child-friendly questions provide readers with an opportunity to dig deeper and reflect on the meaning of the illustrations (e.g., “Can you tell what is happening in this picture? Who is helping the man? Why does he need help?”). Additional information is provided which includes information related to Autism Spectrum Disorder, Cerebral Palsy, and Down Syndrome.
Whether children come to you with questions related to homelessness and disabilities or you want to initiate a discussion on those topics, these books included in the “Compassion Series” can help equip you with the questions and appropriate responses when dealing with such sensitive and complex topics.
Kelsey Sukich is a recent graduate from the B.Ed. program at the University of Manitoba. She has experienced firsthand how compassionate children’s hearts can be.
on this title or this review, send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal
use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any
other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.