Kids Speak 8

Chaim Walder
  • Review
By – July 14, 2016

Chaim Walder con­tin­ues his Kids Speak series with this eighth book which has sto­ries told by youth for youth. In each of the four­teen entries, a boy or girl tells of a per­son­al expe­ri­ence and the life lessons learned from it. The lan­guage is sim­ple and prac­ti­cal, teach­ing lessons in han­dling fear, fac­ing chal­lenges, friend­ship and self-con­fi­dence. Some of the sto­ries are aimed at the ultra-Ortho­dox mar­ket. For exam­ple, Aryeh returns mon­ey to a rich busi­ness­man using his pho­to­graph­ic mem­o­ry to track down the man through his license plate. The man then says that when Aryeh is old­er he should come back for a job, to which his father responds that he is rais­ing Aryeh to be a Torah schol­ar and that would be the use of his gift­ed mem­o­ry. On the oth­er hand, the beau­ty of the busi­ness­man ensur­ing that Aryeh’s friend gets a much need­ed oper­a­tion is a won­der­ful out­come and shows a uni­ver­sal self­less­ness on Aryeh’s part for not accept­ing a per­son­al reward. 

Anoth­er sto­ry tells of Dina break­ing through the stig­ma attached to her sis­ter who has Down syn­drome. Each sto­ry tells of mis­takes, brav­ery and/​or over­com­ing obsta­cles. These sto­ries touch the uni­ver­sal heart even if they come from with­in insu­lar communities.

Rec­om­mend­ed for ages 7 – 12.

Dro­ra Arussy, Ed.D., is an edu­ca­tion­al con­sul­tant who spe­cial­izes in inte­grat­ing Jew­ish and sec­u­lar stud­ies, the arts into edu­ca­tion, and cre­ative teach­ing for excel­lence in Jew­ish edu­ca­tion. She is the moth­er to four school-age chil­dren and has taught from pre-school through adult. Dro­ra is an adjunct pro­fes­sor of Hebrew lan­guage at Drew University.

Discussion Questions