This BookWalk will focus on an outstanding multicultural selection, The Little Red Hen and the Passover Matzah. This book was authored by Leslie Kimmelman. Kimmelman has written several children’s books that celebrate Jewish culture and holidays and has a fun way of presenting the unique traditions that go along with them.
The story begins with the little red hen looking at her calendar and realizing that Passover is coming soon. From there, it follows her classic tale and her repeated requests for her friends to help her with the Seder cooking chores.
You probably remember the basics of the story from this point. Her friends scoff at her requests for help, so she has to do all of the work on her own. She gathers the grain, plants it, harvests it, schlepps it to and from the mill, cleans the house, bakes the matzah, cooks the meal, and I guess I’ll leave the rest for your own reading pleasure.
Paul Meisel has worked with numerous authors to bring their stories to life through his illustrations and he’s done a fine job with this one. He’s used vivid colors and created fanciful pictures that are engaging for young readers and plain fun for older ones. I particularly like the simple way that he has demonstrated emotional expression in the eyes of all the animals.
The multicultural fun doesn’t end with the story. Kimmelman has also included an explanation of the Passover celebration, a recipe for making matzah, and a Yiddish glossary.
Don’t stop with this Kimmelman prize. Check out her website at www.lesliekimmelman.net and be sure to look at her latest work, The Shabbat Puppy.
As always, leave a comment below and feel free to make some BookWalk suggestions.
The Little Red Hen and the Passover Matzah
Leslie Kimmelman, author
Paul Meisel, illustrator
Holiday House, Inc.