Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry

Synopsis: Zuri is so excited about her “extra-special” day, but as the day dawns, Zuri realizes she has an extra poofy challenge. What will she do with her hair? No worries, Daddy is home! With a little technical assistance, Daddy’s bathroom salon does not disappoint. Zuri receives an extra- special hair-do for her extra-special day.

Teacher’s Thoughts: This is a wonderful story that echoes the sentiments and experiences of those blessed with tight, curly hair. Matthew A. Cherry and Vashti Harrison challenge “the look” – that sometimes subconscious response directed at loc wearing, arm sleeve tattoo wearing, unshaven, slightly unkept men of color. Zuri’s dad attends to the needs of his little girl. He listens to her, reassures her, and delivers on his promise. This story has the power to dispel stereotypes. It speaks to the power of love, acceptance, and persistence.

Kindergartners’ Responses:

I know how Zuri feels. When I’m at my dad’s house, and my hair gets brushed, it’s tricky cause I have knots.

Once I asked my dad to do a simply hairstyle and he pulled it a lot.

It reminds me of the time my mom didn’t do my hair like I wanted it and I was screeching and my dad put me on punishment.

Sometimes you don’t always get what you want and you have to be patient.

This book can teach my sister to experiment a little. She always wants the same hairstyle. Nothing!

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