This is a story that reminds us of the importance of accepting ourselves, just as we are, and finding ways to work with our differences and still achieve our goals.
Henny is the story of a chicken, born a little different to other chickens. Where the other chickens all had their lovely wings, Henny had arms. When she was born, Henny’s mother was a bit surprised, but she loved Henny just the same.
For Henny, she found there were good things about being different and there were some not-so-good things about being different. Henny also had some worries about things she may have to deal with in the future: tennis elbow, hangnails, deodorant!
Then one day, Henny discovers just how useful arms can be, and suddenly she sees how the future may not be so scary after all.
Why I love it:
I absolutely love books that contain gentle reminders about self-acceptance and finding the positives.
In a world where we are constantly compared to others, it’s nice to have a book to read and discuss, that focusses on the bright side of being different and on finding the strengths in what you are given.
It’s also just a really cute idea – a chicken with arms. What’s not to love about that?!
Themes/ideas to discuss with your child:
- Acceptance of self and others
- Unconditional love
- Finding strength
- Being different
- Embracing differences
- Looking on the bright side
- Dreams and aspirations
- Finding a way to achieve your goals, no matter what the obstacles
- Being optimistic
Questions to ask your child:
- What do you think this book might be about?
- Do you think this is a fiction book (a story) or a non-fiction book (facts)?
- Is this a book you want to read? Why/why not?
- What is different about Henny?
- How do you think Henny might feel about her difference?
- Is there anything about you that you think is different to others? Tell me about it.
- Did you enjoy this book? Why/why not?
- What do you think the book is trying to teach you?
- How did Henny’s mother feel when Henny was born?
- Why did Henny always have to walk at the back of the line?
- What were some of the worries that Henny had?
- What happened to make Henny see how useful her arms could be?
- List three things Henny then realised she could do with her arms.
- What is Henny most looking forward to about the future?
- If you could say one thing to Henny, what would it be?
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