Caramel reviews Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem by Amanda Gorman and Loren Long

Today Caramel reviews the new book Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem, written by poet Amanda Gorman and illustrated by Loren Long. As usual, Sprinkles is taking notes and asking questions.

Caramel reviews Change Sings: A Children's Anthem, written by poet Amanda Gorman and illustrated by Loren Long.
Caramel reviews Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem, written by poet Amanda Gorman and illustrated by Loren Long.

Sprinkles: So Caramel, tell me a bit about this book.

Caramel: This book is about change, and how children can change the world.

S: That sounds inspiring! Tell me, how can children change the world?

C: Well, let me tell you what happens in the book. There is a girl in the beginning, who I think might be Amanda Gorman herself, and she has a guitar and is calling people to join her to try and make the world a better place. She helps another person recycle, then the two of them go and help others by giving them food, and deliver groceries to an elderly woman, and then they invite another boy to join their little band, each of them has an instrument. And the three of them go and build a ramp for a disabled kid’s home. Then that kid joins them too, and the group grows, and they keep cleaning up, planting flowers, and they fix up their community buildings and so on.

S: So they all help, and they all work together to make their community a more welcoming place, a good place to live.

C: Yes. And they are making music all along.

S: Well, the book is called A Children’s Anthem, and according to my dictionary, an anthem is a “a rousing or uplifting song identified with a particular group, body, or cause”, so it makes sense that there is music in there, right?

C: Yeah. And it makes it livelier and more fun.

Caramel is reading Change Sings: A Children's Anthem, written by poet Amanda Gorman and illustrated by Loren Long.
Caramel is reading Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem, written by poet Amanda Gorman and illustrated by Loren Long.

S: Amanda Gorman is a poet. Is there poetry in this book too?

C: Yes, the whole book is one long poem. All of it rhymes, and it is fun to read out loud.

S: Yeah, I enjoyed reading it out loud with you. We saw Gorman read her poem “The Hill We Climb” in the inauguration of President Joe Biden this January. Do you remember?

C: Yes I do. Can we put a video of her poem here?

S: Yes, of course. Okay, here it is:

Amanda Gorman reads inauguration poem, ‘The Hill We Climb’ (January 20, 2021, PBS).

S: So what do you think about the poem that is the main text of the book?

C: There are so many different types of people, and the poem brings them all together. And even though they are all very different, they all work together and make their community better.

S: So you also like the illustrations.

C: Yes. They are very colorful. And the children really look like they are dancing and making music and having lots of fun. But this one boy looks like he is dancing but I don’t think that the position he is in is possible, his feet would break!

S: Yes, but think of it not as standing but while jumping up and down or turning around, in some instant, you might look like you are doing something impossible.

C: I guess he could be jumping up. And there is a kid who is playing basketball and that is cool too.

S: Yes, the children when they join are just doing standard kid things and they just join in to help. And that seems to be the message, right? That we can all help.

C: And even us kids can help too, and if we do, we can change the world.

S: That is inspiring. Okay Caramel, we wrote long enough. Tell me your three words to describe this book, and we can wrap it up.

C: Colorful, inspiring, poetic.

S: I like those words Caramel. And what do you want to say to finish the review?

C: Stay tuned for more book bunny reviews!

Caramel enjoyed reading Change Sings: A Children's Anthem, written by poet Amanda Gorman and illustrated by Loren Long, and recommends it to little bunnies who enjoy the sound of words and like to think about how they can make the world a better place.
Caramel enjoyed reading Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem, written by poet Amanda Gorman and illustrated by Loren Long, and recommends it to little bunnies who enjoy the sound of words and like to think about how they can make the world a better place.

Caramel reviews A Kids Book About Change by David Kim

Today Caramel wanted to talk about a book he read in the A Kids Book About series: A Kids Book About Change by David Kim. As usual Sprinkles is taking notes and asking questions.

Caramel reviews A Kids Book About Change by David Kim.
Caramel reviews A Kids Book About Change by David Kim.

Sprinkles: So Caramel, tell me about this book.

Caramel: This book is in the first person.

S: What do you mean?

C: The author says things like “I did blah blah”.

S: So yes, the author is talking about his own experiences and using the “I” pronoun. He is also using the “you” pronoun a lot, right?

C: Yes. He is talking to the reader, asking questions, like, “When a change happened were you scared or excited?” and so on.

S: So what is the book about then?

C: Well, it’s about change, it says so in the title. He talks about how things changed in his life when he was a kid.

Caramel is reading A Kids Book About Change by David Kim.
Caramel is reading A Kids Book About Change by David Kim.

S: And then he asks the reader to think about times when things changed for them, right? Can you think of a time when something changed in yours?

C: Sure. Every single day!

S: What do you mean?

C: In every bunny’s life something changes every single day.

S: For example…?

C: I read a different book almost every day.

S: But the book is about somewhat more important changes, I think.

C: Yes I guess so.

S: So can you think of a big change that affected you?

C: Being born.

S: I doubt you remember that though. So anything closer to today?

C: Distance learning. When the pandemic hit, my school (and it is also Marshmallow’s school) moved to distance learning.

S: Yes, that was a big change. So the author of the book wants you to think about this change. How did you feel? He lists a bunch of words for you to think about: Were you scared? excited? Sad?

Caramel is reading A Kids Book About Change by David Kim.
Caramel is reading A Kids Book About Change by David Kim.

C: I was sad. I am still sad. I miss being with my friends in our school.

S: I know. It is very hard. What does the book suggest you do when you are going through a change?

C: We can “resist change” or “ignore change”, but the author wants us to “embrace change”.

S: Hmm, what does that mean?

C: I think it means don’t fight it, take it.

S: Hmm, so what does it mean in your case, about moving to distance learning?

C: Eventually I started liking some parts of it actually. My teacher makes things a lot of fun, and she sometimes gives us little gifts when we go to pick up materials. And we also start school a bit later, which is nice, I get to sleep more! I also can share some of my Lego things which I could not take to school before.

S: But you still miss your friends and your teacher, a lot, don’t you?

C: Yes.

S: But you have embraced this change, I think. You are trying to see the good things, and trying not to get stuck complaining about the bad things.

C: Yes, and we are doing this so we can all stay healthy.

S: So then, this seems to resonate with the moral of this book. What would you say that that is? What is the main message of this book?

C: Don’t fight against change…

S: … and I think another important message is to talk to people who will listen when you are worried about a change.

C: And in my case that was you Sprinkles.

S: Thank you for sharing with me Caramel. I think you are handling this big change as well as any little bunny can. Did reading this book make you think of anything else?

C: What do you mean?

S: How about impermanence?

C: No, not impermanence, again!

S: I know. You and Marshmallow always complain when we are listening to wakeup videos on our meditation app, and they turn out to be about impermanence. Here is one we liked, about the seventy-two microseasons in traditional Japanese calendar:

“Mindfulness and impermanence — There are 72 Japanese micro-seasons in a year, each lasting about 5 days. With names like “mist starts to linger” or “east wind melts the ice,” these micro-seasons root people in their surroundings and focus on the repeated patterns of nature’s cycles.” YouTube video from the Headspace channel.

C: They are all about impermanence! And especially Marshmallow does not like that.

S: Yes, but the point of those videos is almost the same as this book, right? That change is always happening, and to everyone?

C: Yes, in those videos they say: “an idea so important to mindfulness: impermanence, that is, that everything is changing in our minds, our bodies and the world around us.”

S: So change is the only constant, as an old philosopher once said. Then we’d better get used to it, and learn how to handle it well.

C: Impermanence is permanent!

S: Yes, that is true. So let us wrap this up then. What doesn’t change in our reviews is that I ask you to give me three words that describe this book.

C: Yes, you do always ask me that! Let me see. Colorful, because the letters are colorful.

S: It almost reminds me of The Book With No Pictures that you had reviewed before.

C: True. There are not many pictures in this one, either. There is only a picture of a bowl with some Korean food in it and a plate with a sandwich.

S: Yep, that is kind of why I thought of that book you reviewed before. Okay, you need to give me two more words…

C: Helpful… and impermanence!

S: I guess that last one needed to make it in, right? Okay, then. Let us call it done. What do you want to say to our readers as we end?

C: Stay tuned for more book bunnies reviews!

Caramel appreciated reading A Kids Book About Change by David Kim, and recommends it to all other little bunnies who might be facing changes in their lives (which is actually every single one of them, so yeah, this is a good book for all little bunnies...)
Caramel appreciated reading A Kids Book About Change by David Kim, and recommends it to all other little bunnies who might be facing changes in their lives (which is actually every single one of them, so yeah, this is a good book for all little bunnies…)