My Aunt Came Back

Title: My Aunt Came Back by Pat Cummings


Bibliography: Cummings, P. (1998). My Aunt Came Back. New York, New York: HarperFestival.


Annotation: A young her has a vivacious aunt who travels all over the world but always comes back to visit her with a gift from her trips. She even brings back a wood shoe from Timbuktu! The last time her aunt comes back, she takes her niece with her on her next adventure.


Genre: Realistic Fiction


Grade Level: K-1


Readers who will like this book: Young readers that are attracted to vibrant images and intrigued by the wonders of the world will love the story of this young her and her aunt.


Personal Response and rating: 5; My Aunt Came Back was an instant favorite, the rhythm in combination with the illustrations make this story impossible not to love.


Question: Where do you think the young girl and her aunt are going? Where might you like to go? (Asked after the reading.)


Same, Same but Different

Title: Same, Same but Different by Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw


Bibliography: Kostecki-Shaw, J. S. (2011). Same, Same but Different. New York, New York: Henry Holt and Co.


Annotation: Pen pals Elliot and Kailash learn a lot about each other through their letter exchanges. This book highlights that boys from America and India have a lot in common despite the difference in their worlds; Elliot and Kailash both have pets, go to school and enjoy climbing trees. They’re the same, same but different!


Genre: Realistic Fiction


Grade Level: 1-3


Readers who will like this book: This book would be a great introduction to learning about the world’s cultures and pen pals. It also promotes equity and equality. Anyone curious about other cultures would enjoy the story of Elliot and Kailash.


Personal Response and rating: 4; the relationship between Elliot and Kailash makes learning and relating to other cultures relevant for young readers and would be a great addition to a teacher’s classroom library in hopes of embracing cultural diversity.


Question: Have you ever had a pen pal? What place might you like to learn about through a pen pal?