Friday, May 26, 2017

New PBT Series: Theme Lists - Picture Books about Memory Rituals

Here in The States, we’re headed toward Memorial Day on Monday so I thought I’d give you a demo showing how helpful the PBT search engine can be. 
You’ll find a large list of search words at the bottom of your screen if viewing PBT on a computer. If you’re on a phone, you must click on “view web version,” a choice found under the comments of a post or at the bottom of the list of recent posts. Play around with it and you'll be amazed at the variety of books you'll find here at PBT, over 600!
This first entry in a new PBT series highlighting books that share a particular theme all have in them some sort of memory ritual. To use the PBT search engine, I clicked on the search words “memories,” “remembering,” and “war.” I found ten stories that have this element.
In the list below, I give you the title, the author, and the PBT postdate. Click on the date, and you’ll go to that book’s post. Not all of these books are appropriate for Memorial Day, but they give you some ideas for creating your own memory rituals which are useful for such a holiday.
Memory rituals you find in these books include hanging objects on an ancient tree for remembering an ancestor (immediately above) and collecting a string of buttons which once belonged to a deceased mother and then using them like prayer beads to remember her (immediately below). 
I’d love a comment about any of these books that you’ve read. Perhaps you have ideas on how they can be used. Some are simple like this one (immediately below) which has the animals publicly sharing what the late Badger taught them. 
Some are complicated and particular such as an usual arrangement of roses created after the destruction of The Twin Towers (immediately below). Ask me a question, if you see some books that interest you but you aren’t sure how to use them at home, a classroom, a therapy session, or with your family of faith.
You might choose to not read the picture book to others. Instead you let the story inspire you to create a memory ritual for yourself or for your group. Memory rituals are healing. They are especially meaningful and found in most religions. In Christianity, communion, remembering our baptism, creating altars, and wearing particular jewelry are just a few ways we remember crucial events and important people. Sometimes creating your own ritual makes such experiences all the more meaningful.
These books highlight some secular ways to remember sacred ideas, pivotal events, or loved ones who are missed:
Lila’s Sunflowers by Kosinski - 11/11/16
September Roses by Winter - 9/11/16
The Wall by Bunting - 5/23/15
I Have an Olive Tree by Bunting - 3/12/15
Sadako by Coerr - 2/15/15
Grandpa Green by Smith - 8/7/14
Badger’s Parting Gifts by Varley - 8/8/14
The Tsunami Quilt by Fredericks - 11/6/14
Aunt Mary’s Rose by Wood - 8/4/14
The Memory String by Bunting -  7/28/14