All the World

Common Sense Media says

Endearing art, rhythmic poem celebrate the flow of life.




Caldecott Medal and Honors

What parents need to know

Educational value
Not applicable
Positive messages

We are all part of the same big wide world, and it is a world filled with adventure, beauty, good days, bad days, but mostly "hope and peace and love and trust."

Positive role models

Multicultural, and multi-generational, families share the world together. They play at the beach, go to the farmers market, climb trees, get caught in the rain, warm by themselves by the fire. One grandfather pulls kids in a wagon, a father hold his baby, a mother helps her daughter up from a rollerskating mishap, friends pull a rowboat in out of the storm, and so on. The world is a cooperative, peaceful place even when everything is not working out perfectly.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this 2010 Caldecott Honor book has an award-winning message to match its expressive artwork. 

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

The story begins with two kids digging at the beach. Before long it has broadened to include a much larger world and a whole mix of family and friends. As the day progresses, all their lives weave in and out of each other's, moving the story from the beach to the farmers market to fields, churches, parks, restaurants, and back to various homes. In the end, the little girl stands smiling and realizing that "everything is you and us ... all the world is all of us."

Is it any good?


Kids and parents will love this book that celebrates connections between all things: rocks; sand; vegetable fields; stars; trees; people of all shapes, sizes and ages; music; storms; old; new; and so on. Kids will love the words of the poem, which are just rhythmic enough to be almost predictable, but original enough to keep the story enjoyable and fresh. Detailed illustrations add a comforting depth to the story. The sensitive artwork and gentle sing-song of the poetry work perfectly together to create a sentiment that is both peaceful and endearing. 

With lines of black prisma color that sweep across lively watercolored scenes, Caldecott Honor medalist Marla Frazee brings a delicate sensitivity and depth to the pages of this book. From small scenes to full two-page spreads, her  bustling, yet contented, paintings not only express the loving sentiment and rhythm  of Scanlon's poem but broaden its story in a way kid's especially will enjoy. 

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how the artwork makes the poem into a story. What do the pictures add? How do they show that the world belongs to the little boy and girl? How does it show that the world is big and wide, and includes us all?

  • What other kinds of things would you add to paintings of your world?

Book details

Author:Liz Garton Scanlon
Illustrator:Marla Frazee
Genre:Picture Book
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Beach Lane Books
Publication date:September 8, 2009
Number of pages:40
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 8
Read aloud:4
Read alone:6
Award:Caldecott Medal and Honors

This review of All the World was written by

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Kid, 11 years old May 9, 2010

All the World Review

rating: iffy 14+ for preteens and up
What other families should know
Too much violence
Great messages
Great role models
Parent Written byStanfordFan12 December 31, 2011

A Favorite at our House.

A wonderful lyrical story that examines our concrete and abstract world in a poetic venn diagram of time, nature, and family. The timeless story highlights a few of life's, sometimes ironic, contrasts and finally circles back around to family and the little things that connect us with family and our greater humanity. The illustrations are outstanding and full of little details that my kids talk about every time we re-read the book. While this is not a book that my kids often pick up to read on their own, it IS one of our all time favorite books to read aloud. My kids are rapidly approaching double digit ages but our (dwindling) moments of snuggling and reading aloud at bedtime still regularly include this great book.
What other families should know
Great messages
Parent of a 3 year old Written byNadiaj212 April 15, 2011

Beautiful illustrations - a nice read-aloud book

The illustrations are beautiful. The story sounds lovely read aloud. My daughter enjoys this book a lot.
What other families should know
Great messages


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