Brainy Parenting

All Different Now: Juneteenth, The First Day of Freedom

Author: Angela Johnson

Illustrator: E. B. Lewis

Published in 2014 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers

All Different Now shares a momentous story from the origins of Juneteenth. Told from the perspective of a young girl who, along with her family, is enslaved, the story starts as a day just like any other. The young girl and her family wake early, eat breakfast, and start their work in the cotton fields. Unbeknownst to them at this time, the Emancipation Proclamation declared freedom for enslaved people, but the news did not reach them until years later. This story shows how word spread and, at last, the narrator and her family learned of their freedom and celebrated that things would be all different now. The text is presented in moving free verse. Intricate watercolor illustrations add beautiful detail and emotion. Additional information, resources, a timeline, and a glossary are accessible at the back of the book.

Additional Resources:

  • Author Angela Johnson website
  • Meet author Angela Johnson
  • Illustrator E. B. Lewis website
  • Meet illustrator E. B. Lewis
  • “The Historical Legacy of Juneteenth”
  • “The Meaning of Juneteenth” with historian Jarvis Givens
  • “Happy Juneteenth” by Monita K. Bell from Learning for Justice
  • “Teaching Juneteenth” learning plan and resources from Learning for Justice
  • “Slavery Didn’t End On Juneteenth. What You Should Know About This Important Day” from NPR

This post appeared first on Samantha Cronin's Kid Lit Library.