Saturday, March 25, 2017

A Hat for Mrs. Goldman

A Hat for Mrs. Goldman by Michelle Edwards and G. Brian Karas (2016)

Sophia’s neighbor, Mrs. Goldman, knits hats for everyone in her life, and Sophia makes pom poms to adorn them. One winter, Sophia notices that Mrs. Goldman’s generosity has left her with no hat of her own, so Sophia decides to make one for her. Unfortunately, Sophia’s skill doesn’t quite match up with her intention, and she’s frustrated by her lumpy hat. It is, of course, perfect in Mrs. Goldman’s eyes. This book made me teary in the same way as Sophie’s Squash—perfectly sweet and funny without being saccharine. Mrs. Goldman is Jewish, and Sophia references grandparents in Argentina—refreshingly reflective of the many ways that lives and people intersect. A bit longer than most storytime books, this is one I’d make an effort to include. Heart—and head—warming.

Themes/topics: kindness, neighbors, creativity, crafts, knitting, good deeds

Sample text from first two spreads:

When Sophia was a tiny baby, Mrs. Goldman next door knit her a tiny baby hat to keep her warm.

Now Sophia is big, and she makes the pom-poms for Mrs. Goldman’s hats. Hats for the tiniest babies. Hats for small, medium, and large friends and neighbors. Mrs. Goldman taught her how. “Keeping keppies warm is our mitzvah,” says Mrs. Goldman, kissing the top of Sophia’s head. “This is your keppie, and a mitzvah is a good deed.”

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