Thursday, March 19, 2015

A Picture Book a Day for a Year: Day 334

Dynamic Duo: Book 2
Picture Book: You are My Sunshine

Author: Jimmie Davis

Illustrator: Caroline Jayne Church 

Summary: This is a board book with the lyrics of the chorus to this fun song. In case you don’t know it, here are those lyrics:
You are my sunshine,
My only sunshine.
You make me happy when skies are gray.
You’ll never know, dear, how much I love you.
Please don’t take my sunshine away.

Hanna’s Comments: This is a 2nd PBT Dynamic Duo offering. The subtitle of yesterday’s book is the title of today’s book and a popular American song. Long ago, I learned this fun song at church camp where we loved to sing it in a variety of silly renditions. The song was first recorded in the 1930s as a country song, but it has been covered by so many singers and sung in various contexts that it is more like an American folk song now. The verses are a little more mature than the chorus and are about romantic love so it makes sense that only the chorus would be offered for young children, but don’t limit the application of this idea to just young children. If a board book is inappropriate, simply offer the song via a different method. We sang the first verse at my church camp. It was a fun, non-threatening way to sing about romantic love with fellow adolescents in an environment awash with Christ’s love. Check out the verses by watching one of the many versions you’ll find on

I don’t say this often enough: Many of the books I offer and conversations I encourage here at PBT can be enjoyed at home with a parent/grandparent and child. This is a perfect example. Read the Toot and Puddle Book offered yesterday. Sing You are My Sunshine, if you have the book or not. Then talk about how God’s love shines on and through all of us when the skies outside are gray or blue and whether we are feeling blue (or even a little gray).

Original Publisher & Date of Publication: Cartwheel Books, 2011

Age & Grade Appropriateness: 2 and up, Toddler and up 

# of Pages: 12 

Available in Spanish? Not at present but there is a nice video of the song being sung in Spanish on  

Formats other than Book: There are many videos of this song on though they are not related to this book.

PBT Category: Song Book, Post 2K 

PBT Topics this Book connects with: affirmation, bonds/connections, choir/music/singing/songs, commitment, dependence/interdependence, gladness/happiness, joy, love, moon/space/stars/sun, parents/parental love    

Scripture Connections: The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you (Numbers 6:1b); arise, shine, for you light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. (Isaiah 60:1); Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. (John 8:12a); …now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light. (Ephesians 5:8b);   

Idea(s) for Application: Read this book when doing a young children’s lesson on how God’s light shines through us, Jesus is the light of the world, or how love between people can be like a sunshine.

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