Avery G. and the Scary End of School
Written & Illustrated by Sivian Hong
Multicultural Children’s Book Day review 2023
Avery G. and the Scary End of School successfully intertwines a character of color with a trait not often identified as diverse – anxiety. Diversity generally is defined as related to race, culture, religion, physical abilities, gender identification, etc. But it also includes social and emotional characteristics, such as anxiety – and in this book, specifically, anxiety brought on by change.
The author uses two common occurrences – the end of school and change – to make the book easily relatable for children. Unlike most other students, Avery is not looking forward to the summer vacation. While her classmates excitedly discuss their summer plans, Avery says she has a “bad feeling” in her tummy. Her dislike of change brings on her anxiety.
Avery makes a list of her fears that she shares the list with her parents. Avery’s concerns are realistic and commonly experienced at the end of the school year. They include the lack of a regular schedule, the prospect of having a different teacher when she loves the teacher she has, fear that her classmates will not remember her after the summer, and feeling sad when saying goodbye. The parents create easy and reasonable solutions, such as creating a schedule for summer and planning playdates at the schoolyard during the summer.
In addition, the author included a fifth reason for Avery’s anxiety which may not be commonly associated with anxiety. Avery has been working so hard that she is having difficulty listening and thinking. She is burnt out and tired, which makes the end of school even harder. Avery begins taking breaks throughout the day to do some movements with her body to solve this issue. What a helpful idea!
The illustrations are playful, bright, and colorful. The child-like quality makes them engaging to kids. And the author provides a practical model to help children express their anxieties – making a list – and demonstrates that fears can be overcome by sharing with an adult and devising a doable plan. Children and parents will easily relate to this book and come away with a great model to use when facing fears.
The author-illustrator Sivian Hong gifted me a copy of her book for this review.
“Sivan Hong authors and illustrates the children’s book series The Super Fun Day Books, including “Benny J. and the Horrible Halloween”, “George J. and the Miserable Monday”, “Emily D. and the Fearful First Day” and “Avery G. and the Scary End of School”. Her inspiring books focus on neurodiverse children, who overcome their challenges with perseverance and bravery. The Super Fun Day Books have even been featured on NBC and News12.
Sivan also serves as a Trustee on the Boards of the Multicultural Children’s Book Day, the Rita Allen Foundation and the ASPCA.”
Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2023 (1/26/22) is in its 10th year! This non-profit children’s literacy initiative was founded by Valarie Budayr and Mia Wenjen; two diverse book-loving moms who saw a need to shine the spotlight on all of the multicultural books and authors on the market while also working to get those books into the hands of young readers and educators.
Ten years in, MCBD’s mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves continues. Read about our Mission & History HERE.
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Authors: Sivan Hong, Amanda Hsiung-Blodgett, Josh Funk , Stephanie M. Wildman, Gwen Jackson, Diana Huang, Afsaneh Moradian, Kathleen Burkinshaw, Eugenia Chu, Jacqueline Jules, Alejandra Domenzain, Gaia Cornwall, Ruth Spiro, Evelyn Sanchez-Toledo, Tonya Duncan Ellis, Kiyanda and Benjamin Young/Twin Powers Books, Kimberly Lee , Tameka Fryer Brown, Talia Aikens-Nuñez, Marcia Argueta Mickelson, Kerry O’Malley Cerra, Jennie Liu, Heather Murphy Capps, Diane Wilson, Sun Yung Shin, Shannon Gibney, John Coy, Irene Latham and Charles Waters, Maritza M Mejia, Lois Petren, J.C. Kato and J.C.², CultureGroove, Lindsey Rowe Parker, Red Comet Press, Shifa Saltagi Safadi, Nancy Tupper Ling, Deborah Acio, Asha Hagood, Priya Kumari, Chris Singleton, Padma Venkatraman, Teresa Robeson, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Martha Seif Simpson, Rochelle Melander, Alva Sachs, Moni Ritchie Hadley, Gea Meijering, Frances Díaz Evans, Michael Genhart, Angela H. Dale, Courtney Kelly, Queenbe Monyei, Jamia Wilson, Charnaie Gordon, Debbie Ridpath Ohi, Debbie Zapata, Jacquetta Nammar Feldman, Natasha Yim, Tracy T. Agnelli, Kitty Feld, Anna Maria DiDio, Ko Kim, Shachi Kaushik
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???? FREE RESOURCES from Multicultural Children’s Book Day
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???? Register for the MCBD Read Your World Virtual Party
Join us on Thursday, January 26, 2023, at 9 pm EST for the 10th annual Multicultural Children’s Book Day Read Your World Virtual Party!
This epically fun and fast-paced hour includes multicultural book discussions, addressing timely issues, diverse book recommendations, & reading ideas.
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Follow the hashtag #ReadYourWorld to join the conversation, and connect with like-minded parts, authors, publishers, educators, organizations, and librarians. We look forward to seeing you all on January 26, 2023, at our virtual party!Purchase Now