- Age Range: 3 - 7 years
- Grade Level: Preschool - 2
- Hardcover: 32 pages
- Publisher: Viking Books for Young Readers (February 14, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0670062448
- ISBN-13: 978-0670062447
- Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.2 x 10.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,046,014 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Belinda Begins Ballet Hardcover – February 14, 2008
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A solid story with a positive message about underdogs and self-confidence. -- School Library Journal
About the Author
Amy Young trained as a fine artist at Yale and received an MFA in painting from Indiana University as well as a law degree from Harvard. She lives in Spring Lake, Michigan.
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I read this book on-line today through an organization called "We Give Books" which donates a book for every book read on-line. The books go to schools and literacy programs through out the world, providing children who otherwise might not own any books greater access to reading and literacy activities. It seems support to teachers is also provided. There is no cost to join or participate other than having access to the Internet.
I did enjoy reading this book which is full of humor and energy. Our heroine is Belinda, born with extra small everything... except her extra large feet! How she manages to live with the good and bad of large feet provides the rest of the story. The pictures are cute, without going over the top, the situations and emotions involved are honest and dealt with simply. This would be a useful book for any child who has some "ugly duckling" issues in his or her life, and who doesn't? Great for discussing body image issues!
I would recommend this for younger children from about 3 (being read to) up through about second or possibly third grade. And of course for those adults who secretly love to read children's books.
I did notice the "meanness" of the teacher. I think that disagreements with teachers are something that happens. This book can be a useful tool if the issues are discussed with the child or children reading the book. Should Belinda have been more assertive initially, or should she have obeyed the teacher's request, even though she found being a clown humiliating? Of course another child might have delighted in being the clown. I think even young children can discuss these issues. Children certainly experience people being mean to them (or sometimes perceive meanness when they can't do what they want).
When Talent Show time comes around, it is not all fun and games for this sweet young girl when Mrs. Rhino thinks that her only talent appears to be that of a clown.
Then one day sad Belinda happens upon a ballet dancer. Seeing her float on the stage sparks an idea and a smile for Belinda. Maybe, just maybe.
Sometimes you have to see in yourself what other do not.
This story brought a tear to my eye. To see a young child grow her own wings is an inspiration to all.