Book Reviews

That's A Family (video & manual)

by the Women’s Educational Media
reviewed by Patricia Schiff Estess

We, of all people, know that not all families look alike. More than half of Americans today have been, are, or will be in one or more step-situations. Grandparents are raising more than 1.3 million children. There are about a million adopted children in the U.S.  And millions of children are raised by single parents, at least for part of their growing-up years.  So why schools continue to act like there's only one type of family is beyond us.

Teachers who believe children need to understand that families are diverse entities have a wonderful new 30-minute video to serve as a guide -- That's A Family, produced by the Women's Educational Media in San Francisco. With blunt ("The hard part is when I'm with my dad I want to be with my mom, and when I'm with my mom I want to be with my dad") and sometimes hilarious candor ("They don't rent you…they keep you until you're really big and really old"), the children in the video open the doors to their homes and get right to the heart of what a family is.  As Fernando says at the end of the film, "It doesn't matter who's in the family, but it matters that you love each other and take care of each other.  That's a family."

For more information on "That's A Family," contact Women's Educational Media at 415-641-4616 or visit the Website at

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