Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Emma's Awesome Summer Camp Adventure by Amy and Grace Webb


A Charley and Emma Story
by Amy and Grace Webb
Illustrated by Merrilee Liddiard
Beaming Books
Picture Book
32 pages
ages 4 to 8


All for inclusion, and inclusion for all! Emma is going to her first summer camp, and she is so excited! Camp Waterfall is an accessible camp, which means that Emma, Charley, and a host of new friends with different abilities can all participate, with nobody feeling left out or getting left behind. But will Emma really be ready to meet all the challenges and new experiences of camp? Join Emma and her friends as they face obstacles, overcome fears of trying new things, and discover what's possible in a place that's really built for all. Children will cheer along with Emma every step of the way, and will learn that an inclusive, accessible world for all is truly possible!


The importance of accessibility for everyone hits, while diving into the fun of summer camp.

Emma is excited! She's off to her very first summer camp, and her brother is going with her. What's even better is that this camp has made sure that she can partake in all activities and get around by herself. Not only can she discover the forest and try things like zip-lining, but she also gets to meet tons of new friends.

It was nice to see a book, which awakens awareness for the importance of accessibility. It also shows how those kids with disabilities enjoy the same adventures as any other person...if they can get to them. All of this is set in the excitement of summer camp and shows the familiar scenes, which belong to it. There's outdoor fun, swimming, adventure, and new friendships to be formed. Everyone is positive, supportive, and open to new things even when it takes a bit more courage. 

The illustrations fit the theme nicely and let the atmosphere come across gently and with good vibes. Through these, the various situations of the characters are portrayed, since they aren't really mentioned much in the text. The text does flow well. It carries a mistake or two on the editing but does make a nice read-aloud.

There's an extra section at the end of the book, which covers the various points and types of accessibility to help deepen the topic. I do wish that these were more pointed out during the tale as well. The story heads into the theme very subtly and doesn't show how accessibility is a problem to begin with. This way, it feels like the main theme is side-stepped to head for the fun and friendship instead. But it's still a nice read and does support that kids are kids in every circumstance.

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