Monday, March 9, 2015

A Picture Book a Day for a Year: Day 324

Picture Book: Feel Confident

Author: Cheri J. Meiners

Illustrator: Elizabeth Allen

Summary: From the point of view of a young girl in preschool or early elementary, this book has her asserting her value, skills, and confidence. She begins by looking at her baby photos and declaring, “I like being me - a very important person.” Then she quickly adds, “At every age, each person is important and has something to say.” Her comments range from embracing her strong body and mind to promising to try many new things. Specific skills are addressed such as looking people in the eye, saying “thank you” when given a compliment, and asking for help when a problem is overwhelming. She ends by explaining that she can feel confident about becoming the person she wants to be because in many ways she is already that person.

Hanna’s Comments: Psychologists are finding overwhelming evidence that building social-emotional skills, such as those addressed in this book, can simultaneously build their academic functioning. Likewise, connecting those skills to spiritual or faith-based values increases a child’s resilience and encourages positive outcomes like high school graduation and successful job entry. My hunch is those faith-based values are reinforced as well. So many concepts and skills are addressed in this book that there are many possibilities for connections to our Holy Scriptures.  In the end papers of this book, you’ll find a section called Ways to Reinforce the Ideas in Feel Confident! The material offered here includes a list of 10 confidence skills, vocabulary, discussion questions, and activities. This book is part of the Being the Best Me series of books. Twelve books are planned. Two of the other titles available now in that series are Bounce Back! A Book about Resilience and Have Courage! A Book about Being Brave. This author and publisher also have a Learning to Get Along series. Two titles in that series are Reach Out and Give and Respect and Take Care of Things.

Original Publisher & Date of Publication: Free Spirit Publishing, 2013  

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

# of Pages: 40

Available in Spanish? Not at present

Formats other than Book: Tablet

PBT Category: Fresh off the Press 

PBT Topics this Book connects with: abilities, acceptance, authenticity, babies/children, body/body of Christ, challenges, choices/decisions, communication, community, confidence, emotions/feelings, family, growing up/growth, identity/names, image of God, individuality/uniqueness, participation, pleasing God/the Shema, self-acceptance/self-image/self-esteem, self-reflection, strength/strength in God

Scripture Connections:  Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength (Deuteronomy 6:5 & Mark 12:29-30); be strong and courageous (Joshua 1:9); I praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14); your body is a temple (1 Corinthians 6:19)

Idea(s) for Application: Use this book in a program for preschoolers on being a beloved and unique child of God or on the Shema (the Deuteronomy scripture above) aka the Great Commandment. 

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