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 Makeda makes a birthday treat (I Can Read! Level 2, Makeda)
 Author: Rhuday-Perkovich, Olugbemisola

 Publisher:  Balzer + Bray (2023)

 Classification: Easy
 Physical Description: 31 p., col. ill., 24 cm

 BTSB No: 749459 ISBN: 9780063217263
 Ages: 4-8 Grades: K-3

 Birthdays -- Fiction
 Family life -- Fiction
 School stories

Price: $14.99

A young girl celebrates her birthday and the special treats she can make for her class.

 Illustrator: Mba Blazquez, Lydia

   School Library Journal (07/01/23)
   Booklist (09/01/23)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 09/01/2023 Jamaican Nigerian New Yorker Rhuday-Perkovich introduces readers to Makeda, an adorable girl who wants to share traditional treats with her classmates on her birthday. But, wait—her classmates are used to cupcakes! What if they don’t like her “coconut drops and back home stories? Undaunted, Makeda begins the baking project at home with the help of Momma and Nana. They sing and dance, and Makeda's excitement for sharing her birthday sweet builds. When Makeda brings her treats to school the next day, her classmates are at first apprehensive, but soon they realize how tasty Makeda's birthday treats are, and they are inspired to talk about their own family's traditional treats as they sing and share their own family stories. This cheerful celebration of food, storytelling, and diverse experience also explores concepts of bravery, identity, sharing, and open-mindedness. Mba's warm, soft artwork, depicting Makeda's joyful family and her initially skeptical class, nicely enhances this fantastic addition to the I Can Read collection. - Copyright 2023 Booklist.

School Library Journal - 07/01/2023 Gr 1–4—For her birthday celebration, Makeda is thrilled to make coconut drops for her classmates. Her siblings tell her kids will want cupcakes. But Makeda is determined to make coconut drops. Makeda, Momma, and Nana sing, dance, sip tea, and tell stories while they make their beloved coconut drops. Readers feel the nostalgia that Makeda and her family experience for their island homeland. When Makeda arrives at school, some kids ask where the cupcakes are. Others make faces, comments, and ask about potential mistakes. The coconut drops don't look like cupcakes. When Makeda's best friend, Glory, steps up and tries one, soon others follow. The class then launches into conversation about the foods, stories, and traditions they enjoy with their families. This early reader aptly illustrates what can occur when children are brave enough to share their family's culture and background. Illustrations and text work in tandem to show what students can do to foster awareness of individuals other than themselves, and how to talk about differences. Makeda and her family have brown skin, and her class includes children with a range of skin tones, body types, and abilities. VERDICT An inclusive early reader that celebrates dialogue about individual differences.—Jennifer Strattman - Copyright 2023 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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