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One Plastic Bag: Isatou Ceesay and the Recycling Women of the Gambia



by
Miranda Paul
illustrated by
Elizabeth Zunon

Edition
Library edition
Publisher
Lerner
Imprint
Millbrook
ISBN
9781467716086

Awards and Honors
2016 Amelia Bloomer List, Early Readers–Nonfiction
2016 AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prizes for Excellence in Science Books, Commended, Picture Book
Chicago Public Library Best Books of 2015, Informational Books for Younger Readers
100 Notable Titles for Reading and Sharing 2015, Children’s Books
2016 Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People, K–2
2016 CCBC Choices–Contemporary People, Places, and Events
2015 Cybils Awards Nomination, Elementary / Middle Grade Nonfiction
Children’s Book Committee Bank Street College of Education Best Children’s Books of 2016, Biography and Memoir
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
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QTY
Out of stock

JLG Category

Easy Reading Plus

2016 Amelia Bloomer List, Early Readers–Nonfiction
Njau, Gambia: When plastic bags began to pile up around her village, Isatou Ceesay discovered a creative way to repurpose the bags and improve her community. Author’s note. Wolof glossary and pronunciation guide. Time line. Suggestions for further reading. Full-color illustrations, map, and photographs.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
None

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

32

Trim Size

10 5/8" x 8 7/8"

Dewey

363

AR

2.9: points 0.5

Lexile

AD570L

Genre

Nonfic

Scholastic Reading Counts

1

JLG Release

Apr 2015

Book Genres


Topics

Isatou Ceesay. West Africa. Plastic bags. Plastic bag craft. Recycling (waste, etc.). Pollution. Wolof (African people).

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Booklist, The Horn Book Magazine, The Horn Book Guide^, Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, School Library Journal

School Library Journal

The simple format of this picture book belies the strength of its content, a story lovingly supported by charming collage illustrations. As a girl, Ceesay realized that the goats on which her village relied were dying because they were eating plastic bags. She also saw that people were tossing the used bags on the ground just as they had always thrown away their baskets when no longer useful—except the plastic bags, unlike the baskets, weren’t biodegradable. So Ceesay figured out how to use crochet, a skill with which the villagers were already familiar, to make purses out of the plastic bags. Simple but lyrical text conveys this beautiful, thought-provoking tale of ecological awareness and recycling (“The basket tips. One fruit tumbles. Then two. Then ten.”). An inspiring account.—Dorcas Hand, Annunciation Orthodox School, Houston, TX

Horn Book

In the 1980s in the cities of Gambia, a switch from using baskets made of natural materials to non-biodegradable plastic bags led to a problem: roadsides began to be choked by ever-growing piles of plastic bags. Then the problem spread to the villages. In Njau, Gambia, a young woman named Isatou Ceesay became concerned; when she learned that these non-biodegradable objects, discarded after breakage and tears made them no longer usable, were attracting disease-bearing insects and that domestic animals often died after eating the bags, she decided to do something about it. Author Paul has written a clear and sensitive account of Ceesay and her fellow activists’ ingenious solution to the plastic bag problem (they wash them, cut the bags into strips, and crochet the strips into small purses to sell in the city). Zunon’s collages, with their vivid colors, elegant patterns, and varied textures—especially those from actual plastic bags—provide a beautiful and authentic entry into the story. An informative author’s note, glossary, timeline, and suggestions for further reading accompany the story. This handsome presentation of grassroots environmental activism is certain to inspire young readers. monica edinger

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

The simple format of this picture book belies the strength of its content, a story lovingly supported by charming collage illustrations. As a girl, Ceesay realized that the goats on which her village relied were dying because they were eating plastic bags. She also saw that people were tossing the used bags on the ground just as they had always thrown away their baskets when no longer useful—except the plastic bags, unlike the baskets, weren’t biodegradable. So Ceesay figured out how to use crochet, a skill with which the villagers were already familiar, to make purses out of the plastic bags. Simple but lyrical text conveys this beautiful, thought-provoking tale of ecological awareness and recycling (“The basket tips. One fruit tumbles. Then two. Then ten.”). An inspiring account.—Dorcas Hand, Annunciation Orthodox School, Houston, TX

Horn Book

In the 1980s in the cities of Gambia, a switch from using baskets made of natural materials to non-biodegradable plastic bags led to a problem: roadsides began to be choked by ever-growing piles of plastic bags. Then the problem spread to the villages. In Njau, Gambia, a young woman named Isatou Ceesay became concerned; when she learned that these non-biodegradable objects, discarded after breakage and tears made them no longer usable, were attracting disease-bearing insects and that domestic animals often died after eating the bags, she decided to do something about it. Author Paul has written a clear and sensitive account of Ceesay and her fellow activists’ ingenious solution to the plastic bag problem (they wash them, cut the bags into strips, and crochet the strips into small purses to sell in the city). Zunon’s collages, with their vivid colors, elegant patterns, and varied textures—especially those from actual plastic bags—provide a beautiful and authentic entry into the story. An informative author’s note, glossary, timeline, and suggestions for further reading accompany the story. This handsome presentation of grassroots environmental activism is certain to inspire young readers. monica edinger

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