Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin by Chieri Uegaki

Have you ever watched someone perform and been inspired to learn a new skill yourselves? Perhaps it was watching an Olympic gymnast fly through the air, or following a pastry chef on the Great British Baking Show to create a masterpiece cake, or viewing Monet’s masterpieces in an art museum? Or maybe your inspiration came closer to home… In the form of a neighbor who learned to ride her bike without training wheels, a teacher who demonstrated a love of reading, or a grandparent who knit scarves?

In Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin, by Chieri Uegaki and Qin Leng, Hana’s inspiration came from her grandfather, Ojiichan, who played Second Violin in a symphony orchestra in Kyoto. After spending a summer with her grandfather in Japan, Hana returned home determined to learn to play the violin. In fact, she’s not only going to learn to play; she’s practicing for the school talent show, too! The problem, however, is that Hana has only taken 3 lessons and doesn’t play anything that remotely sounds like Ojiichan’s music.

Does she let that stop her though? Of course not! (After all, what kind of growth mindset book would this be if she quit now?). She practices and practices and practices, even though her brothers laugh at her and run away with their ears covered, even though her dog sometimes growls because the “music” she’s producing sounds so strange. And she walks bravely onto the stage at the talent show, even after 5 other violinists have already performed. Despite her nerves and the doubt that creeps in as she walks onto stage, she remembers Ojiichan’s encouragement, reminding her to simply do her best. And she does!


I’m not going to tell you what happens at that talent show, because I don’t want to give the ending away. But, I do love how on the very last page, Uegaki tells us that Hana is continuing to dream big and work towards her next violin goal, which will prove to be a big step up from this year’s school talent show!

Publishers recommend Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin, for ages 4-8. All links for purchase are Amazon Affiliate links. Thank you for considering making a purchase through my links!

If you need more growth mindset inspiration, be sure to check out the rest of the books on my list of Picture Books to Foster Growth Mindsets! Then, comment below with a story of someone who inspired you to learn a new skill or develop a new passion.

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