Chanukah Lights Everywhere

Book review by
Dawn Friedman, Common Sense Media
Chanukah Lights Everywhere Book Poster Image
Loving family's cozy celebration appeals to all.

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Kids say

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational value

Kids learn more about the holiday.

Positive messages

There is a loving-family focus as the holiday's traditions and history are presented.

Positive role models & representations

A warm portrait of a loving family and a child curious to know about his family's faith traditions.

Violence & scariness
Language

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this is a warm story of one family's Hanukkah celebration.

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What's the story?

A 5-year-old boy thinks about what Hanukkah means for his family.

Is it any good?

In this warm picture book, a 5-year-old boy sees the way his family's faith is reflected in their Hanukkah celebration. Melissa Iwai's acrylic paintings perfectly complement the cozy text. Domesticity through the eyes of a child is caught in the details -- son and father making a bed while mother peels potatoes, little sister giving her stuffed cat a bottle, a patchwork of kids' artwork hung on the refrigerator door.

The religious discussion is saved for the end of the book, where the author offers a brief explanation of the meaning of Hanukkah. Other holiday celebrations are mentioned casually as the narrator reflects on his friend's house, where Christmas candles shine in the windows. The emphasis on celebration and family makes this an appropriate book both for families who observe Hanukkah and those who are interested in their children learning more about it within the context of a simple, loving portrait of a family.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about similarities to their own holiday rituals. Does your  extended family come to help celebrate? Do you have special foods or customs?

  • Jewish families might want to compare their own Hanukkah celebrations to those of the family in the book.

Book details

For kids who love holidays

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