Bibliographic Information: Coerr, E., Young, E., & Coerr, E. (1993). Sadako. New York: Putnam.
Brief Annotation: A true story of a young girl who develops leukemia as a result of the radiation from the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. In the hospital, she sets out to fold one thousand paper cranes because legend says that will save her life.
Grade Level: 1-4
(There is a simple chapter book version of this story, also written by Eleanor Coerr, that I read and would recommend for grades 3-5.)
Readers who will like this: Children who enjoy history, Japan, and true stories; children who are artistic and are interested in origami (Japanese paper-folding).
Rating/Response: 5 The story is artistically and sensitively told in a way that younger readers can understand and appreciate. The child protagonist is a good way to get students to relate as well.
One question you would ask before a read aloud: What do you do to make yourself feel better when you are not well? How has a family member or friend helped you when you were sick? or Sometimes, in war, some countries choose to harm others with bombs or other weapons. How do you think this affects the citizens?
Reading Strategy: Social Studies
Rationale for Strategy: This book takes place after real historical events – the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This book encourages students to have empathy, learn the history of other countries besides the United States, and know the consequences of our past actions.
Posted by: Caitlin Miller