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Step by Step

Illustrated by Diane Goode

About The Book

Perfect for first day of school sharing or graduation at year’s end, this tender and comforting book is about tackling life’s firsts, one step at a time.

On the morning a little boy is going to start school, his father reassures him: when things seem overwhelming, take it step by step! Whether it is making new friends, learning to write and count, or cleaning up a big mess at the end of the day, he can get through it all and have fun along the way.

About The Author


Alice B. McGinty often stops to look, listen, and wonder, which has led her to write over fifty fiction and nonfiction children’s books that capture the truths and mysteries of life and nature. Her books include Pancakes to Parathas: Breakfast Around the WorldThe Girl Who Named Pluto: The Story of Venetia BurneyThe Sea Knows, and the award-winning picture book biography, Gandhi: A March to the Sea. Alice lives in Champaign, Illinois, and spends her time seeking wonders, always looking for inspiration for her next books.

About The Illustrator

Photo Credit:

Diane Goode has written seven and illustrated over sixty beloved and critically acclaimed picture books, including the New York Times bestsellers Founding Mothers and Ladies of Liberty by Cokie Roberts. She illustrated several books by Cynthia Rylant including When I Was Young in the Mountains, a Caldecott Honor Book. She is also the illustrator of President Pennybaker and My Mom is Trying to Ruin My Life, both by Kate Feiffer. She lives in Watchung, New Jersey, with her husband, David, and their dog, Briggs. You can read about her at

Product Details

  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books (August 31, 2021)
  • Length: 32 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781534479951
  • Ages: 4 - 8

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Raves and Reviews

A day in the life of a child ready to take on the world—one step at a time.

A child and their dad (both have beige skin and straight, black hair) begin the day with reminders of what the child has already accomplished in life: walking, talking, growing, and learning. There’s more to do, but the child needn’t fear. Each new challenge is to be tackled step by step, one by one. This becomes the refrain for the bouncy rhyming text that carries the characters through their day—getting dressed, piece by piece; crossing the street, stride by stride; making friends, smile by smile; building a miles-high tower, block by block. This cheery mantra reassures the child and allows them to approach new experiences and tasks with confidence—helpful for child readers who, at times, might be anxious. Stanzas tumble along at a spirited pace and brim with positivity, paired with bright, pastel-colored, line-and-color illustrations that infuse the storytelling experience with humorous, eye-catching details. The child’s classmates represent a diverse cast of characters in terms of perceived gender and skin color, and one child uses a wheelchair. For children uncertain about starting school or having new social experiences following the pandemic, this story’s ebullience is bound to bring a smile and a phrase to repeat: “Step by step, one by one.” (This book was reviewed digitally.)

An upbeat read-aloud that encourages young readers in their quests to discover the world.

– Kirkus Reviews, July 1, 2021

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More books from this author: Alice B. McGinty

More books from this illustrator: Diane Goode