Since November is National Adoption Awareness Month, I wanted to take a moment and share with you some of the adoption-themed books that I recommend:
When a crocodile egg rolls into mother duck's nest one day, she's too busy reading to notice. Although Gugi Gugi looks remarkably different than his siblings, they all grow up and learn to do the things that ducks do. One day Gugi Gugi is teased by some mean-spirited crocodiles who then try to trick him into betraying his family to feed their duck-hungry bellies. The trick turns out to be on them in this engaging story about family, loyalty, identity, and belonging.
Choco doesn't have a mother, and so he goes off to search for her. When his search attempts fail, he begins to cry. A sweet mother bear hears him and rushes over to see what is the matter. After Choco recounts his tale, the mother bear lovingly tries to cheer him up. She then asks him if she could be his mother, which at first Choco thinks is quite absurd because she looks nothing like him. Upon deciding that this doesn't matter, he goes home with mother bear, only to discover her other children, Ally (an alligator), Hippy (a hippo), and Piggy (a pig), don't look like her either! He's glad his new mother looks just the way she does!
Horace does not look like his parents, and although he is well-loved, he decides one day to go and search for those who look like him. He finds a family at a park who have leopard-spots like he does, and the children invite him to play. After a fun day of playing together, the leopard family goes home, and Horace is left missing his parents very much. Thankfully they find him just then, and together they go home. At bedtime they talk again about his adoption and how they chose him, and he decides right then to choose them, too. :)
Arun's family is adopting a baby girl from India, where Arun's dad was born. The wait feels unbearable at times as the year goes by, but Arun and his family find ways to stay connected to Asha while they wait for her to come home.
Now I have not actually read this book yet, so it's a risk for me to recommend it to you; however, it received great reviews from School Library Journal and Booklist, two of the most respected children's book review organizations. Here is a book that finally acknowledges the loss and sadness that an adopted child experiences. For that reason in particular, I am including it.
This is the true story of two male penguins who made a life commitment to one another in a New York Zoo. They watched as all the other penguin couples made nests together and had an egg, so they too built a nest together, and found a rock that looked like an egg, but the two penguins looked longingly and confusedly when their "egg" ceased to hatch. The attentive zoo keepers noticed all of this, and so when a baby penguin was rescued and needed a new set of parents, they brought them to this childless couple, and Tango made their family into three!
An oldy, but a goody! In this book, Mr. Rogers gives children the loving assurance that they belong in a family, and helps them to explore their feelings about having been adopted, both the positive and negative feelings. This is a straight-forward, simple, and very well done book.
A beautiful poem about the love of a child's birth mother and her forever mother for her.