Are You My Monster?
Ben and Zip
D is for Drool
Dragon and Captain
Dudley’s Day At Home
El sándwich de Carla
Getting to Know Ruben Plotnick
Grandpa for Sale
Hammer and Nails
Hey, That’s MY Monster!
Holly Bloom’s Garden
How I Met My Monster
I Always, ALWAYS Get My Way
I Love My Dragon
I Need My Monster
I’m Really Not Tired
La nevera de Maddi
Maya Was Grumpy
No More Noisy Nights
Pterodactyl Show and Tell
Silly Frilly Grandma Tillie
That Cat Can’t Stay
The Busy Life of Ernestine Buckmeister
The Day I Ran Away
The Mess That We Made
The Only One Club
Too Much Glue
When a Dragon Moves In
When a Dragon Moves In Again
Wishes for One More Day
Written by Debbie Herman
Illustrated by Sheila Bailey
When Carla brings weird sandwiches to school, her classmates have plenty to say about them. “That’s sick!” says Leslie. “That’s disgusting!” says Natie. But Carla thinks otherwise.
“It’s unique. It’s creative.” Just like Carla. Although she is teased and even ignored by her classmates, Carla’s strong inner sense of uniqueness eventually wins them over.
Wacky sandwiches, wacky illustrations and kid-true dialogue make this book’s message of acceptance, tolerance and the importance of individuality extremely palatable. And who knows? Carla’s Sandwich may even help parents with that ever present dilemma – what to pack for school lunch!
- NY State Reading Association Charlotte Award list, 2006
- Society of School Librarians International Honor Book, 2005
- Storytelling World Award Honor Book, 2005
- NSW Premier Reading Challenge Book in Australia
- Atlanta Parent Magazine Staff Book Pick
Chosen as an Atlanta Parent Magazine Staff Book Pick in honor of Children’s Book Month (November 2004).
Chosen as the Best Children’s Fiction 2004 for 3-7 year olds by RebeccaReads.com
Starred Review from Criticas Magazine for Spanish edition El sándwich de Carla gets
From Children’s Literature
“…an ending that will delight readers young and old.” –Mary Loftus
From Edwards Book Club
“…a story that teaches children that it is okay to be different and that by embracing other’s differences you may just discover something “surprisingly terrific”. This book is a wonderful tale of friendship, tolerance, and acceptance. With colorful, delectable, and brilliant full-page illustrations, it is a must read for children between the age of 4 and 8.”
From Atlanta Parent Magazine
“[We] pulled together the Atlanta Parent Staff Picks of our favorite books from 2004… We culled through hundreds of titles…The competition was fierce, and many excellent books didn’t make the final cut. But then again, we only had room for 20….Spunky Carla is one cool kid…” Elizabeth Cobb
From Puget Sound Council for Reviewing Children’s Media
“…This is a good story for a variety of reasons and uses ranging from its themes of not pre-judging something, especially food, without trying it; problems with mean-spirited teasing; and creative follow-ups such as new sandwichs/drawings of these….”
From Large Print Reviews.com
“…This is an enchanting story that is accompanied by delectable and gleeful illustrations…I wholeheartedly recommended Carla’s Sandwich to readers of all ages!” -Auggie Moore
From Amazon Top 1000 Reviewer
“Celebrate the joys of being different! A delicious reading adventure!” –Betty Dravis,
From Midwest Book Review
“Imaginatively written… and nicely illustrated… Carla’s Sandwich would make a popular and “kid friendly” addition to any school or community library picture book collection!
“This book will be to the brown bag lunch what Dr. Seuss was to ham and eggs…. Sheila Bailey’s irrepressible illustrations are completely engaging and the perfect complement to the text. This book is a gem.” Allie Bates
From Love to Know Children’s Books
“This delightful, multiple award winning book finds a young girl named Carla bringing sandwiches created with strange ingredients to school for lunch. Although she’s regularly teased for her unique lunch concoctions, she stays true to herself and her quirky style, eventually winning over her classmates. The story will ring true to kids who have experienced a “lunch bully,” and help empower them to stand up for themselves.”
From Rebecca Reads.com
“…delightfully illustrated by Sheila Bailey: her way with food is scrumptious! I could not put Carla’s Sandwich down, nibbling my way through a very funny story…” Rebecca Brown,
“Carla’s Sandwich…was a delight to read and is thoroughly recommended.” Andrea Wren,
From Neat Solutions Inc. for Healthy Children
“Carla is very unique, and so are her sandwiches!… This book with colorful, cheery illustrations might just evoke some ideas of crazy recipes for you to try with your kids!”
From Embracing the Child.com
“exploring the joy of being unique – check it out for school lunches”
“A delicious book — I grant Carla five stars for her originality and fantastic food pairings.” Ephraim Kadish, Chef, Restaurateur and father of four
“…a charming story that presents a new way for young children to understand how to creatively embrace who they are, no matter what others think.” Sally Bernstein, Editor in Chief,
“…a delightful tale of a courageous young girl who, despite peer pressure, stayed true to herself.”
“…filled with odd delights…” – Susan Finkle
From Superkidsnutrition.com, Solange Bushra Wasef, MS, RD
This story takes the reader through a week and a half of Carla’s life. Quickly the reader sees that Carla loves to be different. She brings her own very unique lunches to school every day. Her meals include: the banana-cottage-cheese-delight on a baguette; chopped liver, potato chip, and cucumber sandwich; and even a lettuce, tomato, raisin, bean sprout, pretzel, and mayonnaise sandwich. As the week goes on, other students make fun of her lunch because they think it is weird and gross. The biggest bully is Buster. Eventually, no one wants to eat with Carla. One day, Buster forgets his lunch and Carla offers him one of her extra sandwiches. He reluctantly accepts the offer. To the surprise of the entire class, he loves it! The next day everyone brings their own unique concoction to school only to find Carla eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. When asked why she did not bring one of her own crazy creations Carla simply responds, “I like to be different.”
While the sandwiches are certainly unique, this book identifies how it feels for children to be different. Carla goes from being proud to be different to sad and alone at lunch. However, she does not change and eventually is accepted by the other students. Overall, this book utilizes food to deliver a positive social message. However, more emphasis is placed on different rather than healthy food choices.
After reading this book with your child:
- Try creating a fun sandwich by using healthy foods like turkey, cranberry sauce, and whole grain bread.
- Let your child help make their own sandwiches at lunch time.
- Replace regular chips with baked chips.
From KidPeople Classroom
With quirky illustrations, and a storyline and dialogue that rings true to kids’ ears, this book was a fast favorite for the kidpeople and me, too…
After reading the whole book my class thought it was good that the classmates in the story tried a new sandwich and were glad Carla felt better, but they were still pretty dubious about eating sandwiches like Carla’s. I brought most around to the idea that at least trying new things was a good idea, even if you worried that you wouldn’t like it.
We especially enjoyed discussing descriptor words like different, unique, creative, gross and disgusting. And wasn’t it interesting that “sick” means ill, but a sandwich could be “sick” too. I love helping kids understand the nuances of words. And we didn’t even touch on sick meaning awesome in slang… ai-yi-yi.
We also came up with other things to say when we didn’t like something, words that wouldn’t hurt somebody’s feelings. You don’t have to agree with people, but you can’t be mean….we talked about how Carla was brave because she kept bringing “creative” sandwiches for lunch, even when kids wouldn’t eat with her. Being different is okay and we can all be different and accept others who do things in different ways. Their way might actually be pretty good in the end, if we at least give it a try.
I give Carla’s Sandwich two thumbs up. Teachers will find both important concepts and story elements to teach. And it sure lends itself to hand’s-on experiences with new foods.
About the Creators
Debbie Herman is the author of Carla’s Sandwich as well as Rosie Saves the World and From Pie Town to Yum Yum. A full-time writer and editor, Debbie has worked for McGraw-Hill and Scholastic, and is currently a writer and editor at ETS/Edusoft. A former elementary school teacher with an M.A. in Special Education, Debbie resides in Jerusalem, Israel, where she makes weird sandwiches of her own.
Sheila Bailey lives with her husband and daughter on Sauvie Island near beautiful Portland, OR, where she is a firefighter for District 30. When she’s not painting, she’s either firefighting or tending to her farm. Sheila’s favorite food is blueberries, but she has not had the opportunity to eat a blueberry sandwich because she is waiting for someone to invent bread that tastes exactly like whipping cream.
ISBN: HC 9780972922524 ePDF 9781936261802 ePub 9781936261819 KF8 9781936261826
Print Length: 32 Full Color Pages
Date: Fall 2004 Age Group: 4-8
Reading Level: 3
Word Count: 1234
Foreign Editions: Chinese and Spanish
ACTIVITY GUIDES & MORE
THEMES: creativity, peer pressure, food, sharing, teasing, individuality
Check out even more activities at Storyline Online.
Lexile Measurements provided by Metametrics. Guided Reading Levels provided by Marla Conn using Fountas and Pinnel Guided Reading Text Characteristics.
Lexile Display: AD570L
Word Count: 1222
Decoding Display: Very High
Semantic Display: Very High
Syntactic Display: High
Structure Display: High
Guided Reading Level: N
Grade Level Equivalent: 3
Interest Level by Grade: K-5
Educational Description: Picture book, realistic fiction
SEL – Social Emotional Learning: importance of having self-esteem, assertive communication, embracing differences
Story Elements: setting: school, plot and character development: main character, Carla, problem and solution, language: synonyms, illustrations enhance meaning and tone
Comprehension Strategies: identify cause and effect relationships, sequence of events, changes from beginning to end of the story, and central message, make text-to-self and text-to-world connections
Themes: bullying, unusual can be terrific, self- esteem, accepting uniqueness, unusual recipes