Library Program Proposal: Chrysanthemum and Each Kindness

Each Kindness book cover
Chrysanthemum book cover


I firmly believe that what unites us as human beings far transcends our differences, and that one simple act of kindness toward another can pay enormous dividends in the world. In order to link these two ideas, I have created a program that could be implemented in either a public library or a school library for elementary school students. While this program could be conducted at any time, possible relevant tie-ins would be Unity Day (October 25, 2017) or National Random Acts of Kindness Day (February 17, 2018).


I was inspired by the book Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson. The challenge with this book is that, unlike many children’s books, it does not have as happy an ending and, as such, it may be initially off-putting to younger children. I had just finished reading Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes, and it suddenly occurred to me that Henke’s story would provide an “absolutely perfect” bridge to the lessons in Woodson’s book.