Students experiencing the 6th grade can sometimes feel overwhelmed as they get lost trying to find classes, feel awkward trying to make new friends, and become tense with the idea of participating in class, especially if they are unsure they have the right answer. To ease the transition from grade 5 to grade 6 on the first day of school, Ashanti Middleton makes student life a little easier by making Kaylah, the books central character, relatable to students her age!
Using the book as a tool to steer children along the path of positivity, courage and confidence, Kaylah Waylah is a fictional role who exemplifies a ‘can-do’ and ‘do-right’
Born and raised in Queens, New York, Ashanti is born to Haitian - American parents who encouraged her to write as a means of expressing her creativity. Influenced by her niece, Kaylah (for whom the lead character is named), and her friends and family, Ashanti decided to write this book because “kids need encouragement in school, especially when going in to 6th grade which is a really big deal! Parents are focused on back to school shopping, and organizing uniforms, so the book works with the kids to let them know the first day is going to be ok!”
Echoing that sentiment, Mary Wilson, a school teacher with the New York Board of Education for 30 years, agrees that Parents sometimes lose focus of the stresses that kids go through when preparing for a new grade “and this book helps to address their fears using a character who is the same age as them.”
Illustrated by Zach Wideman, the artist brings Kaylah’s character to life. About Kaylah’s character, Zach says “Kaylah is so full of life and character and that comes through in the pictures. She is just like most little girls!” Specializing in children’s books, both Ashanti and Zach have plans to develop a book series and cartoon series in the near future. ‘Kaylah Waylah’s Big Trip to the Dentist’ will be the next release from the Kaylah Waylah series.
Kaylah Waylah’s First Day in 6th Grade is currently available online via http://www.itskaylahwaylah.com as a digital download or in hard copy. Fans can ‘Like’ the book on Facebook via www.facebook.com/