Sunday, October 5, 2014

A Picture Book a Day for a Year: Day 169


Picture Book: The Kissing Hand

Author: Audrey Penn

Illustrator: Ruth E. Harper

Summary: School in the forest is about to start for Chester Raccoon who is reluctant to go. His wise mother explains that we all sometimes have to do things we don’t want to do. Then she offers a family secret: The Kissing Hand. After kissing Chester’s open palm she explains that while he is away, whenever he needs some loving from home, he can press his hand to his cheek and think of his mother’s love. The kiss will jump to his face and fill him with warm thoughts. Armed with his mother’s kiss, Chester walks towards school. Before he separates from her, Chester takes his mother’s hand, kisses her palm, and says that now she has a Kissing Hand too.

Hanna’s Comments: This is a heartwarming book that offers a smart technique for easing fears in a young child who has some separation anxiety. In the Foreword it is suggested that this book is also for adults. All of us have fears inside us that sometimes need reassurance. Consider what rituals you have, even as an adult, that are reassuring. You might also want to look at a similar and more recently published book, The Kiss Box by Bonnie Verburg, illustrated by Henry Cole.

Publisher & Date of Publication: Child Welfare League, 1993

Age & Grade Appropriateness: 3 and up, Pre and up

# of Pages: 32

Available in Spanish? Yes

Formats other than Book: Tablet, CD, Video on Youtube.com

PBT Category: Pre 2K

PBT Topics this Book Connects with: acceptance, affection, anxiety/worry, babies/children, bonds/connections, bravery/courage, challenges, change, comfort, communication, communion/Eucharist, confidence, difficulties, emotions/feelings, encouragement, exile/separation/walls, fear, God’s presence, love, memories/remembering/ritual/tradition, milestones, mothers, new school, nurturing, parents/parental love, reassurance, renewal/restoration, secrets, security, strength/strength in God

Scripture Connections: This day (Passover) shall be for you a memorial day (Exodus 12:14); put on love which binds everything together in perfect harmony (Colossians 3:14); do this in remembrance of me (Luke 22:19)

Idea(s) for Application: The concept of ritual is abstract. For young children this book can serve as a perfect explanation of the Passover meal or Holy Communion. In these rituals, instead of our earthly parents’ love, we are remembering the love of our Creator and Redeemer.