Click to order now!Wanda’s Roses

Wanda'sRosesBy Pat Brisson

When Wanda discovers a thorn bush in an empty lot, she is sure it is a rosebush ready to bloom. Even though she waters her bush and clears the debris with the help of neighbors, only she remains convinced the flowers will come. Wanda’s “can do” attitude produces more than she imagined! A picture book you will read again and again, have students perform as a play, share with parents, and buy for your friends.

What makes this book so unique and important? Wanda is an every-girl who sees the possibility of an idea becoming a reality. And what’s more, she is ready to dive in and do all she can to bring her vision to life. Children quickly relate to this go-getter heroine. Adults are reminded that children are capable of so much and deserve our support to bring their ideas to fruition, to let them bloom!

Do you have a copy of The Complete Guide to Service Learning? This information rich resource includes an annotated bibliography of fiction, nonfiction and picture books for each of thirteen service themes. On the companion CD-Rom you will find additional titles plus interviews with 22 authors on why they wrote their books, their writing process, and author’s purpose, and an added thought about how their book may inspire youth to action.

In her interview about Wanda’s Roses, author Pat Brisson, says, “I wrote Wanda’s Roses when winter was almost over but spring hadn’t yet arrived. Wanda’s longing for something beautiful was mine, too. Of course, this longing is not entirely for roses—it is for something beautiful beyond ourselves, something worth striving for, something we can give our hearts to. I wanted to show a girl who was willing to work hard to make her dream come true. When you share your dream with others, I believe they will do what they can to help you achieve your dream. I often ask students, ‘What is your dream? What are you willing to work hard at?’

“Typically, when I begin writing a book, I don’t know how a story will end. With Wanda’s Roses, I wanted to have a little girl who had a rosebush. As the story developed, I thought, ‘Oh yes, she will turn this into a blooming bush with paper roses.’ Wanda’s neighbors watch her work hard for a month cleaning the lot and caring for her plant. Wanda’s dedication touches the people around her; they sincerely want to help. I’ve been honored, too, that some students have helped to create beauty by planting rosebushes after reading Wanda’s Roses.”

Service Learning Ideas: Gardening, Environment, Youth Voice and Choice   Perhaps more than any other book, Wanda’s Roses illustrates a child with an idea that only she can see the outcome. Others are skeptical and she simply moves forward through action. At the ending, we see she has had tremendous influence on the adults around her. Wanda’s Roses can be a stimulus for gardening, getting youth to generate ideas by being more observant, and to making paper flowers that can beautify hospital trays or delivery of Meals on Wheels. For more ideas, ask the students!    

Boyds Mills Press 32 pages, all ages

Order Wanda's Roses Wanda's Roses @ $9.95