Beginnings: How Families Come to Be

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9780807506028: Beginnings: How Families Come to Be

Simple stories by the author of Helen the Fish explore all the different ways in which families are made, from traditional nuclear arrangements to foster parenting to adoption.

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From School Library Journal:

Kindergarten-Grade 3-Families grow in many ways. Conversations between six children and their parents reveal some of the most common scenarios. Ruben's parents knew they wanted a baby, and his mother became pregnant soon after they were married. Katherine Grace came home to her adoptive parents from Korea as an infant; her new brother just arrived from South America. Since his mother's death when he was only four months old, Mark's Uncle Joe has been his dad. Olivia, whose birth parents were teenagers, is adopted by a single woman. Habib's parents decided to adopt a baby on Nia, the fifth night of Kwanzaa that celebrates purpose. Nicole came to her parents and three siblings when she was an older child. Full-color paintings depict families of different ethnic backgrounds in various configurations. The dialogue rings true. These respectful, fictionalized stories are likely to appeal to children who are adopted as well as to those who are not. A good complement to Gretchen Super's What Kind of Family Do You Have? and What Is a Family? (both 21st Century, 1991).
Maria B. Salvadore, District of Columbia Public Library
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist:

Ages 4-8. There's a very nice feeling to this book, which introduces six children who want to know "how they began." Reuben's mother tells him, "Daddy and I were full of love. After we were married for a while, I became pregnant, and I was full of you!" When Reuben was born, his parents sputtered and sparkled "like fireworks." Katherine Grace came from Korea after her parents made a "hundred phone calls, answered a million questions and filled out a zillion papers." Now, Katherine Grace is getting a sibling from South America. Mark comes to live with Uncle Joe after his mother dies. Olivia was adopted by a single mother but still keeps in contact with her birth parents; Habib was also adopted, and his name means beloved. Nicole, a dark-eyed, dark-haired, disabled girl joins three blond, blue-eyed brothers. Each vignette features a conversation between children and parents that has a realistic feel. The acrylic-and-pastel artwork has a sturdy look, but it's also full of life, with a keen eye for details--a stuffed animal, a house with Kwanza candles in the window. The multicultural families represented here show that love has no borders. Ilene Cooper

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Virginia Kroll, Stacey Schuett (Illustrator)
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