Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A Picture Book a Day for a Year: Day 193


Picture Book: Singing Away the Dark

Author: Caroline Woodward

Illustrator: Julie Morstad

Summary: This exquisite picture book in verse is about a 6 year old girl who has to walk a mile in the snow before the sun comes up in order to meet her school bus. Along the way, she deals with shadows, scary sounds, the movement of various animals, and wire fencing. To combat her fears, she takes a deep breath and sings until the darkness disappears. She sings softly to “calm myself and plan the safest way.” She refers to a line of trees as her “Silent Soldiers” as she compels them to protect her and “stand beside her tall and strong.” This book is based on the author’s own experiences as a child walking to school.

Hanna’s Comments: As a nationally certified school psychologist, one of my goals is for children to become resilient under difficult circumstances. This book beautifully demonstrates how a young child handles her own fears with smart coping skills. The most obvious is her singing, but she also directs her attention in positive ways and imagines supports to help her on her journey. When you share this book with children, talk about how you cope with fearful tasks now and when you were young. Mention in particular how your faith gives you courage and strength to endure in difficult circumstances with God as your companion.

Publisher & Date of Publication: Simply Read Books, 2010

Age & Grade Appropriateness: 4 and up, Pre and up

# of Pages: 36

Available in Spanish? Not at present

Formats other than Book: None at present

PBT Category: Post 2K

PBT Topics this Book Connects with: abilities, acceptance, action, adaptation/assimilation, anxiety/worry, armor, beginnings/morning, bravery/courage, challenges, choir/music/singing/songs, comfort, commitment, confidence, creativity/imagination/ingenuity, danger, darkness/evening/night, difficulties, emotions/feelings, fear, God’s presence, journeys/migrations/pilgrimages/quests, perseverance, safety, security, wisdom, worship

Scripture Connections: Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified. Do not be discouraged for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9); for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control (2 Timothy 1:7)

Idea(s) for Application: This would be a wonderful book in a children or adult’s lesson about dealing with fears or how praising God with song can be a comfort and a coping tool. Also mention our confidence in knowing of God’s presence with us wherever we go.