Recommended for ages 4-8
An updated version of the 2014 book – one of my favorite go-tos for storytime and class visits – gives kids even more ways to be a positive force for change in the world. The rhyming story encourages self-care – eating healthy, dreaming your dreams, surrounding yourself with friends – to get the energy to spread happiness and goodwill by performing good deeds. The book encourages kids to make friends and include everyone; donate time and raise money to help those less fortunate, and take care of the earth by recycling and composting. Other new additions include added back matter, where kids can add their good deeds to-do list and their own “happy word” clouds; there are happy words from around the world, including Swahili, Hebrew, Haitian Creole, and Romanian. There’s a superhero cape activity that encourages kids to decorate a pillowcase cape, mapping to a spread in the book where kids wear their own superhero capes. There are suggestions for adult-kid collaboration, and updated endpapers encourage kids to make their own bookplate at the front of the book; a smiling earth says “Thank you” in a variety of different languages at the close.
The art is adorable, the message is upbeat and optimistic, and the message is clear: everyone has the ability to make positive changes in our world.
Change the World Before Bedtime is a good book to add to your activism/social justice collections. Display, booktalk, and read with The Smallest Girl in the Smallest Grade by Justin Roberts and Christian Robinson; Pass it On by Sophy Henn; 10 Things I Can Do To Help My World, by Melanie Walsh, and Maybe Something Beautiful by Isabel Campoy and Theresa Howell.