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Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes

Chrysanthemum (original 1991; edition 2007)

by Kevin Henkes, Kevin Henkes (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,0922791,236 (4.39)11
Authors:Kevin Henkes
Other authors:Kevin Henkes (Illustrator)
Info:Greenwillow Books
Collections:Your library
Tags:Chrysanthemum, Victoria, flower, teasing, nickname, identity

Work details

Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes (1991)


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I truly love this book because I feel like it depicts such a good message to children. This book shows children that its okay to be a little different from your peers and your classmates. This is an issue that we have in our schools today and I feel like that this could build our student's self-confidence.
  makensiecowart | Sep 26, 2016 |
This is a great book to read to students about embracing who you are; whether it be your name, personality, looks, ect. ( )
  cccoch9041 | Sep 26, 2016 |
This is a sweet story about the uniqueness of names and how one should treat others. This is a great story to teach kids about differences that occur, and not just in names. Even through the differences, each child should feel proud and unique and not let anyone tell them differently, like what happens in the story.
  cgjohn3570 | Sep 21, 2016 |
"Chrysanthemum is a story about a girl mouse named Chrysanthemum. Chrysanthemum loved her name, she loved the way it sounded, the way it looked on an envelope and when she wrote it. She thought her name was perfect until she started school. Her classmates giggled when they heard Chrysanthemum's name. "You're named after a flower!" said Victoria, one of her classmates. Chrysanthemum did not think her name was absolutely perfect, she thought it was dreadful. She continues to get teased in school, until one day, in music class they learn that their teacher's name is also long and that she's named after a flower too. Mrs. Twinkle, the music teacher, is named Delphinium Twinkle and she says that if she has a baby girl she will name her Chrysanthemum. Chrysanthemum now knows that her name is absolutely perfect!
"Chrysanthemum," is an excellent book about accepting who you are no matter what others think or say. I love that the illustrations reinforce the text. The illustrations are very detailed in that they show the emotions of the characters.
Classroom prompts:
I would used this book at the beginning of the school year to show that we need to accept our classmates regardless of who they are. Some themes that can be covered are: bullying, teasing, confidence, and self-esteem.
  janetfuentes | Sep 20, 2016 |
Chrysanthemum is a modern fiction book that teaches about the importance of self respect and self esteem. I throughly this book. I thought the plot was able to discuss issues children face growing up while still remaining uplifting and positive. The characters in this book are relatable and showcase couple emotions. Although the characters are mice the book is able to connect to its audience by using language that isn't too complex. The first line of the book is "The day she was born was the best day of her parents life." These types of sentences are straight forward, but not dumbed down. They are easy to comprehend but the word choice is appropriate which I enjoy. Overall the big idea of this book is that no matter what anyone says, loving yourself is the most important thing.
  jessclark | Sep 18, 2016 |
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First words
The day she was born was the happiest day in her parents' lives.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
My favorite of all the MANY Kevin Henkes books I've read recently, Chrysanthemum is the story of a little girl mouse who believes that her name is perfect... until some nasty girls at school tell her differently. Henkes resolves the story beautifully -- with a teacher who also has a long flower name -- and is sensitive throughout to the hurt that Chrysanthemum feels. Henkes' child protagonists are always supported and always found to be in the right, and the resolution always comes in a way that isn't mean-spirited.

A wonderful, comforting book for young children, with enough clever asides in the illustrations to keep parents engaged as well.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0688147321, Paperback)

Until Chrysanthemum started kindergarten, she believed her parents when they said her name was perfect. But on the first day of school, Chrysanthemum begins to suspect that her name is far less than perfect, especially when her class dissolves into giggles upon hearing her name read aloud. That evening, Chrysanthemum's parents try to piece her self-esteem back together again with comfort food and a night filled "with hugs, kisses, and Parcheesi." But the next day Victoria, a particularly observant and mean-spirited classmate, announces that Chrysanthemum's name takes up 13 letters. "That's half the letters in the alphabet!" she adds. Chrysanthemum wilts. Pretty soon the girls are making playground threats to "pluck" Chrysanthemum and "smell her."

Kevin Henkes has great compassion for the victims of childhood teasing and cruelties--using fresh language, endearing pen-and-ink mouse characters, and realistic dialogue to portray real-life vulnerability. He also has great compassion for parents, offering several adult-humor jokes for anxious mommies and daddies. On the surface, the finale is overly tidy and the coincidences unbelievable. But in the end, what sustains Chrysanthemum, as well as this story, is the steadfast love and support of her family. And because of this, the closure is ultimately convincing and utterly comforting. ALA Notable Book, School Library Journal Best Book of the Year, Horn Book Fanfare Honor List. (Ages 4 to 8) --Gail Hudson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:20 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

Chrysanthemum loves her name, until she starts going to school and the other children make fun of it.

(summary from another edition)

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