Every Home Needs an Elephant
by Jane Heinrichs, published 2021
“What could be complicated about buying an elephant? One minute you didn’t have one and the next minute you did. Simple.”
In this very sweet, minimally-graphic children’s book, nine-year-old Sarah learns to speak up for herself, and express her need for some quality time with her mother. However, it took an elephant to give her that courage. It is, of course, an improbable story, but that is what makes the message in this children’s book even more accessible. There’s no moralistic preaching here, just a living example of how a young girl is struggling to make the transition from being invisible to actually expressing needs. I love that Sarah is nine, because as the Waldorf pedagogy points out, the nine-year-old change is a significant coming of age for children, and a precursor to being a teen. There are not many children’s books that illustrate this transition, so having this one is helpful.