Below is an annotated list of children's literature for the elementary classroom. The books are organized by the Six Elements of Social Justice Curriculum Design (Picower, 2007). It is based on work by pre-service teachers at Montclair State University. They have read and reviewed these books and provided insights into how they can be used in K-5 settings.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

I Like Myself!

TITLE: "I Like Myself"
AUTHOR: Karen Beaumont

I Like Myself, by Karen Beaumont, is a book for children ages 3-7. The book encourages children to accept who they are and builds self-esteem. Its rhyming text makes the book fun and easy to read. The illustrations by David Catrow are bright, colorful, and imaginative. This book teaches children to appreciate everything about themselves, inside and out. Through its silly phrases and wild pictures, I Like Myself, would be an enjoyable read for any child. On the final page, Beaumont writes, "I like myself because I'm ME!" This is an important message to teach young children.

This book is an excellent example to teach the first element of Social Justice Education. It represents the theme self-love and awareness. I Like Myself teaches children that it is okay to like yourself, no matter what their differences might be. The book encourages children to like themselves on the inside and out, and at their best and worst. It teaches the importance of self-esteem.

As a future teacher, I would use this book to teach young children to love themselves for who they are. It could be a useful tool in the beginning of the school year to make the students feel comfortable in my classroom. It could be used as a read-aloud story followed by an individual activity. After listening to I Like Myself, the children could each draw a picture and share with their peers the qualities that they like about themselves. The pictures would be hung around the classroom to boost self-esteem and encourage acceptance.

By Amanda Merkle

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