The Little Yellow Leaf



Great lesson for kids who are afraid to try something new.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The main character, a leaf, is not forced to drop until he finds the courage. Friendship helps him cope.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is the perfect book to read to a young child trying to find the courage to do something a little new or scary.

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What's the story?

When autumn comes, the little yellow leaf is the last leaf on the tree. He is just not ready to let go even though the other leaves swirl around him, the sun beckons and teases, fruit ages, and birds wing their way southward. Finally, when he feels all alone in the snowy winter, he finds a friend, a clinging leaf almost like himself, and together they gain the courage to take flight.

Is it any good?


Kids who have moments of panic can take heart with this lovely little book, with its encouraging message, poetic language, and unique artwork. The lesson here is that with time, and a little friendly support, we all can soar to heights we never imagined.

The story reads like a whimsical poem, and looks like one, too. Words are artistically arranged amid subtle fall-like colors of the collage illustrations that are laid out on graph paper pages. It truly is a "celebration of the friends who help us take the leap."

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how the little leaf felt, perhaps talking first about whether or not leaves really can feel. Why do you think this little yellow leaf was afraid to let go? Do you know how it feels to just not be ready to do something that everyone else is doing? The afternoon sun beckoned and teased the leaf. Why? How do you think that made the leaf feel? What made the difference in the end? Do you think having a friend, especially one who feels like you do, would help you do something hard?

Book details

Author:Carin Berger
Genre:Picture Book
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Greenwillow Books
Publication date:August 26, 2008
Number of pages:40
Publisher's recommended age(s):3 - 7
Read aloud:3
Read alone:7

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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; OK 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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