Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Ages: 4 – 8 years

I stopped watching the news a while ago as the currents events were getting me down.

There were shootings and violence, and there were religious and political arguments.  There were natural disasters and man-made disasters.

Could all of these things be avoided?   Yes, I think most of them could be.

All Are Welcome sends an important message to children in today’s political climate.   This is a great book for both a home and classroom setting.

A warm picture book that celebrates diversity, All Are Welcome gives support to all kids with the repeated message of, ‘’You are welcome here.’’

The illustrations in this book are just as important as the rhyming chant.  They show and celebrate the diversity among the children and their families.

The first page shows a classroom at school drop off in the morning.  The classroom is traditional with a chalkboard, world map, desks, chairs and places to put school bags. 

‘’Pencils sharpened in their case. Bells are ringing, let’s make haste. School’s beginning, dreams to chase. All are welcome here.’’

We follow the children having fun, playing and learning throughout their day. 

‘’Gather now, let’s all take part. We’ll play music, we’ll make art. We’ll share stories from the heart.  All are welcome here.’’

At lunchtime, there is laughter and sharing.  There are a dozen different types of bread! During playtime, the group of children are shown on the swings, slides, jumping, running and playing.

They are shown celebrating the lunar new year and waving goodbye to their friends after school.

Asleep in their beds, they dream of fun times with their friends.

‘’You have a place here. You have a space here. All are welcome here.’’

One of the last pages features a diverse group of children holding hands, all saying ‘’welcome’’ in a different language.  I’m pleased to note that different abilities, as well as cultures, are celebrated in this book, with the inclusion of a cute little girl with red pigtails in a wheelchair.

Alexandra Penfold is a literary agent and also the author of ‘’Eat, Sleep, Poop’’ and ‘’The Littlest Viking.’’ Suzanne Kaufman is an author, illustrator, and animator, illustrating a number of books including ‘’Samanthasaurus Rexx’’ and ‘’Naughty Claudine.’’

Written in a kind of rhyming chant, All Are Welcome is a warm picture book about inclusion.  This book celebrates diversity, giving support to all kids with the repeated message of, ‘’You are welcome here.’’


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