Review- Born Yesterday: The Diary of a Young Journalist

imageBorn Yesterday: The Diary of a Young Journalist

Written by: James Solheim

Illustrated By: Simon James

Philomel Books, 2010, Imagination Library Edition

Target Audience: Ages 3-8

Genre: Fiction

Theme: Growing up, Siblings

How We Discovered This Book: My son received this as his monthly Imagination Library book a few years ago. It is a favorite in our house, and is on frequent rotation. For more information on the Imagination Library, you can read my previous post.

Summary: A baby shares his very funny and astute observations of the world.

What I Liked: The voice in this book is very strong, and hilarious. Right on the first page, the baby talks about being born and says,”If I’d known I was going to be born in public, I’d at least have put on a tank top.” You might think that nothing really happens in a baby’s life, but this story manages to have a main arc and sub plots while still remaining simple. This author has chosen his words immensely well.

What Did My Kids Think? This books cracks us up every time. My son thinks the baby’s observations and the book’s illustrations are so funny. And who wouldn’t laugh at a dog named Foofy?


Journaling: Children of all ages can be encouraged to journal. Both of my children have journals, which we take with us on all of our adventures. My daughter just scribbles at her age, but I like the idea that Aidan is modeling how to put thoughts and ideas on paper.

Writing activities: Scholastic has some good suggestions for using this and other diary books to inspire children to write.

Journalism: Talk about what a journalist is, and what they do. Help the child brainstorm about what they would report on if they were a journalist. Have them pick a topic, research it, and then write the story. This can also be a springboard to a multimedia project where they can be a TV journalist, planning and filming their report.

7 thoughts on “Review- Born Yesterday: The Diary of a Young Journalist

  1. Sounds like a very well-written, unusual and entertaining story. I’ve spent my career as a journalist and encouraged my daughter to start journaling at young age — first with trips. Good suggest. I love the idea of this book. Will definitely have to read a copy.

  2. How imaginative. Who would have thought of a baby journalist??? My kids love “writing books” complete with illustrations, and now dialog (the seven-year-old). They often base them on their favorite books. Right now the seven-year-old is writing a BOXCAR CHILDREN mystery book.

  3. How cute! Love the idea of kids journals. Whenever my nephews or niece come to stay they always journal their holiday away with us complete with illustrations, photos, you name it. Besides it’s always nice for them to give a show and tell back at school. This idea of even younger ones doing it… is adorable.

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