Simon B. Rhymin' Takes a Stand: Simon B. Rhymin', Book 2
By Barbara Saunders,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Charming story about kids' first taste of activism.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
The story discusses current events such as the killing of Breonna Taylor and Colin Kaepernick's protests. It explains what activism is and how to get involved. The main plot concerns circulating a petition.
You have a voice. Join forces with your community to make positive change.
Positive Role Models
Teachers and parents encourage, support, and instruct tweens to get involved in an issue that affects them.
The main characters are an African American boy and a Latina girl.
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Violence & Scariness
There's mention of some acts of violence in the news and current events, including the Breonna Taylor killing by police.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Simon B. Rhymin' Takes a Stand, by Dwayne Reed with Ellien Holi is the follow-up to Simon B. Rhymin', the adventures of a Black middle-school boy who's an aspiring rapper. After the school board cuts funding to their school, which guts some of their favorite activities, Simon and his friend Maria circulate a petition to get it restored. This sequel works as a stand-alone, so you don't have to have read Book 1 to dive into this story.
Where to Read
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What's the Story?
When SIMON B. RHYMIN' TAKES A STAND begins, Simon and his friends start noticing their grievances with their school. The air conditioning doesn't work. Their teams, where they get to compete with other schools, are demoted to clubs. They know that kids on the wealthier side of town have better facilities and continue to have their activities. In class, they're learning about activism, so they decide to engage in it themselves, to demand resources for their school.
Is It Any Good?
This charming, uplifting book builds on the story in Book 1, but you don't have to have read that on to enjoy this one. In Simon B. Rhymin' Takes a Stand, Dwayne Reed, a fourth grade teacher, and Ellien Holi revive the lovable title character from the previous book, Simon B. Rhymin'. It covers the kind of social problems its target readers may be just starting to think about, and offers an optimistic view of making change in your own community.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the concept of privilege. What are some things you enjoy that other people don't have? What are some things other people have that you don't?
Has a teacher ever influenced you to do something outside of school? What was it?
Have you ever taken a risk to stand up for a friend?
- Author: Dwayne Reed
- Illustrator: Robert Paul, Jr.
- Genre: Contemporary Fiction
- Topics: Activism, Great Boy Role Models, Great Girl Role Models
- Character Strengths: Communication, Integrity, Perseverance, Teamwork
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
- Publication date: April 5, 2022
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
- Number of pages: 240
- Available on: Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Award: Common Sense Selection
- Last updated: May 31, 2022
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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Where to Read
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