Wednesday, March 18, 2015

A Picture Book a Day for a Year: Day 333

Dynamic Duo: Book 1
Picture Book: Toot and Puddle: You are My Sunshine 

Author & Illustrator: Holly Hobbie

Summary: It’s beautiful day, but Toot is moping. When Puddle asks about his sadness, Toot is unable to explain. When Tulip points out that the sky is blue, Puddle explains, “That doesn’t matter when you are blue too.” Toot’s moping continues, and he begins complaining to Puddle about his physical features. Puddle makes Toot’s favorite dessert and suggests an adventure, but these don’t help. Puddle invites friends over. They sing You Are My Sunshine and play a game, but Toot is still sad. On Sunday morning a severe storm comes; all are afraid but Toot. Afterwards, the air feels fresh and new, and Toot is himself again. Toot and Puddle decide that sometimes you need, “a big whopping thunderstorm to clear the air.”

Hanna’s Comments: Being able to identify and understand feelings are important social-emotional skills. Still, the source of some feelings remain a mystery. It’s also important for children to learn to accept how others are feeling and not require explanations. Everyone has a right to their own feelings and privacy. However, there is nothing wrong with offering opportunities for emotional shifts as long as no one is forced. Having a conversation about such matters would be beneficial in a classroom, religious community, or family. You can make this a theological conversation by asserting that God accepts our feelings. In fact, God made us creatures who have an assortment of feelings. God is willing to listen no matter how we are feeling. Even when we can’t put our feelings into words, just being in God’s presence in prayer will help. 

This book is a sequel to Toot and Puddle which is a wonderful book about how friendship knows no boundaries. I chose this book because I liked the way the plot carefully introduces the subject of sadness or depression to children. Tomorrow I’ll offer a second book in this PBT Dynamic Duo that is the lyrics to the song You are My Sunshine, an element of this book’s plot. Consider pairing them and having a conversation with children about feelings, particularly sadness.

Original Publisher & Date of Publication: Little, Brown, & Co., 1999

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

# of Pages: 32

Available in Spanish? Not at present 

Formats other than Book: None at present 

PBT Category: Pre 2K 

PBT Topics this Book connects with: acceptance, authenticity, brokenness, caring/tending, change, choir/music/singing/songs, companionship, depression/despair/sadness/sorrow, difficulties, emotions/feelings, encouragement, friends/friendship, fruit/fruit of the Spirit, healing/healthcare, mystery, patience, prayer, presence, rain, renewal/restoration, respect, storms, tolerance, transformation, waiting, weather  

Scripture Connections: The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed spirit. (Psalm 34:18); the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness… (Galatians 5:22); Is anyone among you hurting? Let them pray. Is anyone among you cheerful? Let them sing praise. (James 5:13)

Idea(s) for Application: This book and tomorrow’s book could be components of a lesson on feelings, particularly accepting the feelings of others and how we can always bring our feelings, even when we don’t understand them, to God.  

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