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In Jesse's Shoes: Appreciating Kids With Special Needs    by Beverly Lewis & Laura Nikiel order for
In Jesse's Shoes
by Beverly Lewis
Order:  USA  Can
Bethany, 2007 (2007)
* * *   Reviewed by Melissa Parcel

Allie is embarrassed that her older brother Jesse isn't a regular brother like all her friends' siblings. Jesse needs his sister to walk him to the bus stop each morning, and it's a chore because Jesse is easily distracted by everything around him. Allie knows that the others laugh at Jesse and make fun of him. She's tired of sticking up for Jesse and also tired of being embarrassed by him. Her dad suggests that she try to understand what it is like to walk in Jesse's shoes - and Jesse takes this direction literally, with some surprising results for both siblings.

In Jesse's Shoes is a wonderful book about learning to accept those who are different from us. Jesse is autistic, but kids will be able to apply this to other children (and adults) with special needs as well. My own seven- and nine-year-old children have an autistic friend, and wanted to share this book with their classes at school. Kids have an amazing capacity for empathy and understanding, but they have to be taught how to handle the situations before they have a chance to demonstrate it. Beverly Lewis has written a book filled with love, to which children will respond positively.

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