4th grader publishes book about her family
Famed author Toni Morrison once said, “If there's a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.” Carrollwood Day School 4th grader Lexi Layton did just that when she penned Different Just Like Us, her book about her special family!
“I wanted to write this book because I think everyone is important, no matter what color they are or whether their parents are two women or two dads,” explains Lexi. “Everybody is special in their own way. Nobody is less than anybody else, because we are all equal.”
Different Just Like Us introduces the reader to Lexi’s special family and ways they are different from and similar to other families. The book was conceptualized last summer, after the publisher, Tammi Croteau Keen, approached Lexi about co-authoring a book. Ms. Keen and her company, Civin Media Relations, publish books that focus on kindness, diversity, and acceptance. Ms. Keen had seen social media posts about Lexi's dog-treat making business (Lexi and Teddy’s Tail Waggin’ Treats) and the amazing character education and entrepreneurship that are ingrained at CDS. She loved that Lexi was inspired to start her own business because of CDS’s Young Entrepreneurs’ Day and that Lexi decided to donate to K9 Partners For Patriots as her charity.
After consulting with the publisher, Lexi chose the topic of her book and worked with the publisher and illustrator through Skype interviews and emails.
Lexi was inspired to write the book after spending time over the summer with her family and extended family, including donor siblings. ”It's important for people to see that we are not all the same [but] we all deserve to be treated fairly. My family is different, but we are more similar than you may think. I think by telling my story, people may reflect on what they do or say in the future.”
Lisa Vicencio, PYP coordinator at CDS, is proud of Lexi’s initiative and the example she sets as an International Baccalaureate student. “As an IB student, Lexi took action to express her story which reflects the values of being caring and open-minded to all kinds of families. In order to make this world a better place, she believes her book communicates the importance of inclusion and equity for everyone.”
Different Just Like Us may be purchased from the publisher’s website or from Amazon. A portion of the sales will be donated to Carrollwood Day School; the book even includes a page introducing CDS to the readers.
Click here to order Lexi’s book (10% of her profits go to CDS)