Values: Community, Equality, Inclusion, Respect, Compassion, Pride and Confidence.
Welcome to our World is one of the most popular books in my classroom. It has had children right up to Year 6 engrossed and on the waiting list to borrow it from my class library!
This non-fiction book is a celebration of children's lives around the world. It includes information on cultural clothing, greetings, breakfasts, party games, typical school days, birthday cakes and cures for hiccups from every corner of the globe. It is beautifully illustrated by Harriet Lynas and the children I have read it with poured over customs and traditions they knew nothing about. It allowed us to open up wonderful discussions about traditions and customs from the children's own family lives and communities. They were able to tell us confidently about special celebrations in their homes and in places they had visited.
This book embodies the Values of equality, inclusion, respect, compassion, pride and confidence. It celebrates diversity and shows that children all around the world have differences but they also have lots of similarities. It is a book you can pour over for hours or you can read a page a day for several months. It is fun and imaginative in its layout and is aesthetically pleasing even for the most reluctant reader.
Welcome to our World brings to the forefront the Value of community. It takes pride in local classroom and school communities and enables children to feel proud of their cultural backgrounds and journeys. It brings a sense of fun and collective learning as children practise how to say different greetings from around the world (the pronunciation is helpfully provided!) and it reminds us that we are all human.
This book also opens up lines of enquiry. Why might children in this country be wearing those thick coats? Why might these children have to walk a long way to school? Do you know where this country is? Shall we find it on a map? It develops curiosity and a love of learning about the world we live in. It promotes an idea of global citizenship.
I will always have this book on my Values bookshelf. It brings so much to class discussions and opens up so many opportunities for discussions about what it means to be a child or human, and what joins us all.
Grab your copy at a local bookshop or find it on Amazon. You can also follow Moira Butterfield on Twitter: @moiraworld .
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