We Came to America by Faith Ringgold

Published by Alfred A. Knopf 

Summary:  An illustrated poem celebrating immigration.  Ringgold starts with the lines, “We came to America/Every color, race, and religion/From every country in the world” then repeats them several times through the book.  In between, she mentions those who were here already, those who came in chains, those who came to escape from a dangerous situation, and other ways immigrants came to America.  She celebrates the contributions each culture made to American culture.  All the people are depicted with simple, brightly colored illustrations.  The entire poem is printed on the last page.  32 pages; grades K-3.

Pros:  A perfect introduction to immigration for the primary grades (although a little context would be needed before reading).  The illustrations are eye-catching, and the repeating text invites kids to chant along.

Cons:  Every time I saw this book sitting on my desk, Neil Diamond’s “Coming to America” got stuck in my head.

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