Acceptance, understanding and tolerance are very important to young children and even to adults. Being part of a group, joining a club or even just having fun with a group of friends can be difficult if those in the group do not recognize you for who or what you are. At times even as adults we find that meeting new people can put a strain on us and our own outlook on life if those new acquaintances have any prejudices against race, religion, monetary status and appearance. Children often do the same when someone is overweight, not pretty, has difficulty learning or is not someone they think fits in. Meet Little Green a turtle that will not only inspire young readers but adults too to Believe In Yourself and Who you are!
Little Green was sitting in the center of a swamp when he saw a group of geese flying by. Little Green just wanted to be special and accepted so he joined the group and wanted to learn how to fly. The Great Goose was instructing his students and Little Green listened as he told them to stretch their wings and fly. But, when he asked a question the question of what happens if he does not have wings the response was quite startling. Great Goose seemed appalled and said reminded Little Green that he is not a goose. But, stating that maybe he was a good without wings and he definitely seemed inspired to learn how to fly. But, not being a goose did not help his cause and his question just made the Great Goose angry who told him to leave. He could not stay because he was different. So, he hopped away and guess what! He found and saw some horses. The Head Horse praised all of the foals for trying hard and meeting their goals. Encouraging them that they can win races, do things that are tough changed when Little Green asked about Hooves and said that he did not have one. Can it be that he’s a horse without hooves? Head Horse thought about it and then told him to leave and be on his way. The same thing happens when he goes to a nearby lake and sees a school of Koi. King Koi is instructing the students and teaching them to swim. Explaining that everyone wins and that they were not racing until Little Green asks a question and you have to read to find out what happens next.
The authors bring the story to life with the dialogue and the illustrations help readers understand the emotions that come through in each situation as you look into Little Green’s eyes. Where he goes next and what happens will make readers smile as he finds a group that just might be where he needs to be and just maybe might accept him. Father Frog is patient and when Little Green explains what happened before he tells him he tells him in simple words that everyone will understand: Almost anything is possible when you give it all you’ve got, except that you cannot be something that you are not!
What happens to Little Green as time passes you will have to learn that for yourself? What happens when someone different wants to join his group? Will they accept someone that is not like them? Acceptance is important to all children and even adults. Learning how to be who you are and accepting yourself the way you are is an important lesson learned in this book. So, teachers, parents, children, guidance counselors and adults of all ages look long and hard, deep within yourself, accept others for who they are and you just might find that you are inspired, determined and know that anything is possible: There just might be a Little Green in all of US!
Fran Lewis: Reviewer