Friday, May 8, 2015

3 Tips on How to Make a Graduation Gift More Meaningful and Fun

1.  Give a Picture Book. Suggested books are listed below.

2.  Write a personal note inside with the date. Be sure to explain why you chose that book for the graduate. Giving your own spiritual angle to the book you chose offers even more meaning to the lucky recipient. If your inspiration is lacking, choose a quote from the book and simply relate it to the graduate.

3.  Within the pages, place a gift card or cash, but make sure you give a hint in your note so that it will be found. Graduates are busy people!

All the books listed below are part of my A Picture Book a Day for a Year list except for the last book. Look in each set of parentheses to know where on this blog to find more about each book. At the end of this post, you’ll find details about that last book. 

For Those Who Will Do Great Things:
God’s Dream (Day 154, September 20, 2014)
  Authors: Desmond Tutu & Douglas Carlton Abrams
  Illustrator: LeUyen Pham  

  Let There Be Peace on Earth (Day 120 on August 17, 2014)
     Authors: Jill Jackson & Sy Miller                               
     Illustrator: David Diaz

  For Those Who Love to Travel:
  The World is Waiting for You (Day 350 on April 4, 2015)
     Author: Barbara Kerley

  Miss Rumphius (Day 49 on June 7, 2014)
     Author & Illustrator: Barbara Cooney

For Those Who Want to Make the World a Better Place:
The Three Questions (Day 16 on May 5, 2014)
   Author & Illustrator: Jon J. Muth

  The Curious Garden (Day 116 on August 13, 2014)
     Author & Illustrator: Peter Brown

For Those Who Have No Idea Where They are Going but are Sure to Have Fun Along the Way:
Sam and Dave Dig a Hole (Day 277 on January 21, 2015)
   Author: Mac Barnett
   Illustrator: Jon Klassen

  Is This Panama? (Day 123 on August 13, 2014)
     Author: Jan Thornhill
     Illustrator: Soyeon Kim

For Those Who Would Enjoy Some Nostalgia:
The Happy Owls (Day 184 on October 20, 2014)
   Author & Illustrator: Celestino Piatti
Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
   Author & Illustrator: Dr. Seuss 
Summary: It seems Dr. Seuss created this book with graduates in mind. In fact, the book jacket calls it a “graduation speech”, but I don’t find evidence that the speech was ever given by Dr. Seuss. It has been quoted in many commencement speeches. You’ll find that Seusian quality of imaginative verse, contrived words, and other-worldly illustrations. The first verse is 
Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places.
You’re off and away! 
Here’s a PBT extra: You can find 25 quotes from this book at this link: 
Hanna’s Comments: Don’t limit this book to graduates. It could be for encouragement at other thresholds such as for someone leaving on an extended tour of Europe, a new job adventure, or a graduate school program. Do note that the subject of the story is a male character referred to as “kid” so perhaps young people are the best recipients. There is also a sense of independence and a solo aspect to the journey ahead.   
Publisher & Date of Publication: Random House, 1990
Age & Grade Appropriateness: 4 and up, Pre and up
# of Pages: 56
Available in Spanish? Yes
Formats other than Book: Tablet, Audible, has this book being read aloud wonderfully by actor John Lithgow.
PBT Category: Pre 2K
Scripture Connections: Behold, I am doing a new thing… (Isaiah 43:19); arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. (Isaiah 60:1); anyone in Christ is a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17); put off your old self…and put on the new self, created after the likeness of God… (Ephesians 4:22-24)
Idea(s) for Application: Besides giving this book to recent graduates, read this picture book at a program honoring graduates in your family of faith. 

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