Painting for Peace in Ferguson and The Little Bit Scary People

New and Fabulous

Painting for Peace in Ferguson by Carol Swartout Klein is a great tool for parents wanting to discuss with their children the unrest in Ferguson Missouri and other cities around the country. The book does not go into the details of the rioting itself. Instead it focuses on the coming together of people from diverse backgrounds to rebuild through art.

By the time I got to the last pages of this picture book, I felt the power of the mosaic of paintings – a statement of community and healing that defies the desolation of the boarded up windows on which they are painted. Recommended for kids 6 and up.

Another Not-so-Oldie but Goodie

So I’m breaking the mold a little here with a not-so-oldie but certainly a goodie.

The Little Bit Scary People by Emily Jenkins follows a little girl as she watches people that act different than she does…and are a little bit scary. But, she knows, if you were to visit these people at home, you would see they are actually nice…and not even a little bit scary. Maybe still a little bit different in how they do things. But underneath it all, not so different really.

This is a simple book that gives us characters that look and sound an awful lot like people we know. I think that is what makes the book so effective (and comforting). As the little girl in the story concludes, they are people, just like her… not really scary at all. Recommended for ages K-3rd grade.

Share books you recommend on the revitalizing power of empathy.

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