At her first show-and-tell, Amelia may have made a mistake, a mistake muy grande. Seeing a basket filled with all sorts of small objects makes Amelia worry that she has brought the wrong item to share with her new classmates. The most precious thing of all from her island home may not be right in her new American school. Told in both English and Spanish, this heartwarming tale will connect with any child who has been a newcomer or stands out for one reason or another.
I randomly came across this book in the Strand (one of my favorite places on Earth), and fell in love with Amelia and the illustrations of this book. This is a fantastic, authentic multicultural text. This bilingual text has the English and Spanish on the same page, but is not a literal translation, and rather remains true to the richness and beauty of the Spanish language.
This children's book is appropriate for the early elementary grades, especially if show-and-tell is a part of building the classroom community. This text would be great additionally for use with English language learners, in language and thematically. The storyline is perfect for opening a conversation about uniqueness and richness in various cultures. I would also use this story in a character study because Amelia is one who we can all identify with and changes throughout the book.
Domains of Social Justice:
Self-love and acceptance (1) and respect for others (2) --Amelia inspires children to love their own culture and share it with their peers. This book also demonstrates the difficulties with being new to a classroom and a culture. This book also has the potential to open conversation about language in the classroom (exploring issues of SJ - 3) given the format of the text and the relation to the political and cultural climate of our world.