On the first day of kindergarten, a teacher asks the boys and girls to line up, and Yoon lines up with the other girls. But when some children mistake Yoon for a boy because of her short hair, Yoon bursts into tears.
Does she really look like a boy? At home, Yoon finds a solution. Her sister s special headband is perfect! When she wears it to kindergarten, no one teases or mistakes her for anything but who she is! Yoon has a lovely time with her new friends.
But Yoon s sister has been missing her special headband so when Yoon has to go back to school without it, she s worried all over again.
Thankfully, her friends like Yoon exactly the way she is.
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PreSchool-Grade 1—Yoon approaches the first day of kindergarten with trepidation. Her fears are realized when her short hair and trousers cause the other kids to mistake her for a boy. The next day, she declares her gender identity by wearing a girlie headband with long, fake curls attached. She soon comes to realize, however, that the boys and girls accept her for who she is, not how she looks. The spare text has the slightly off-kilter feel of a work in translation. The foreign flavor is further established through the delicately detailed color illustrations, with their all-Asian cast, Korean signage, and practices like wearing slippers instead of shoes in the classroom. However, the story of initial insecurity at school followed by the joy of acceptance is universal. While Yoon finds being mistaken for a boy upsetting, it should be noted that the boys and girls in her class participate equally in jumping rope, dancing, and playground fun. The story places no value judgment on gender, merely using it as a device through which Yoon learns to accept herself more fully. A pleasant story that might also trigger some interesting classroom discussions about gender, appearance, and friendship.—Heidi Estrin, Feldman Children's Library at Congregation B'nai Israel, Boca Raton, FL
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