Something Alive: How David and His Baby Sister Mia Became the Talk of the Classroom

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Judy Woodhouse has a message to share with her readers - and it is this: As our planet Earth becomes smaller, becomes more of a cross-cultural global village, the smartest, best thing we can do as human beings is to develop an acceptance and understanding of one another.

And where better to begin that understanding than with our children and their childhood reading. That's why Woodhouse, an Ontario-based author, has developed her Multicultural Tales Series of books for youngsters. Her first book, Something Is Missing, is a delightful story of a immigrant family from Sudan; her second offering, Maybe Even Pigs, tells a tale from the perspective of a family from within the Old Colony Mennonite culture.

Woodhouse's third release in her Multicultural Tales Series is the just-released Something Alive, the story of two young Korean children adopted into a Canadian home. The book, beautifully illustrated by artist Robin Oakes with striking colour artwork by x-height Graphics Inc., tells the story of young David and his baby sister Mia. All of David's classmates are bringing "cool" items into school each day for Show and Tell - and David is desperate to bring something just as cool to make a good impression on his classmates. He wants to bring "something alive" into class to match the puppies, birds and bug-eating chameleons of his friends.

Wouldn't you know it? When David thinks of "something alive" for his Show and Tell, he decides to bring in his kid sister Mia. All he needs to do is teach her how to wink to his school buddies. Sure enough, David heads off to school with Mia in tow and she quickly becomes a classroom hit. David and his baby sister have made a great impression - and many, many new friends. Something Alive is something very special for the young, fast-learning reader.

Author Woodhouse has made her own special, personal commitment to the multicultural community in her southern Ontario city. She regularly visits schools and community centres to connect with students through book readings, round-table discussions and literacy activities. What she is hoping for, ultimately, is to help young people to explore and appreciate the cultural and lifestyle diversity within their community. She maintains an educational website at

Artist Oakes is a long-time collaborator with the author. Born and raised in Kitchener, Ontario, Oakes teaches cartooning classes in schools, galleries and community centres in addition to her fine-art, mural and caricature work. She maintains her art-based website at

Something Alive
by Judy Woodhouse
Illustrated by Robin Oakes
ISBN: 9780978424022


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