social emotional learning: 7 Articles

Celebrate Earth Day!

It’s Earth Day! Celebrate our planet with books that explore the environment. These stories explore social-emotional and developmental issues, but the natural world plays an important role.  All the Feelings Under the Sun: How to Deal With Climate Change by Leslie Davenport , illustrated by Jessica Smith All the Feelings Under the Sun: How to Deal With Climate Change is a timely, thoughtful workbook that will help young readers work through their feelings of anxiety about climate change. Through informative text and activities, the book gives children age-appropriate information about the climate crisis and gives them the tools they need to manage their anxiety and work toward making change. Camilla, Cartographer by Julie Dillemuth, PhD, Illustrated by Laura Wood Camilla loves maps. Old ones, new ones, she loves them all! She often imagines what it must have been like to explore and discover a new path for the first time. One morning, Camilla wakes up to a huge snowstorm. Her neighbor Parsley can't find the path to the creek. But Camilla has her old map — which inspires her to make her own path and her own map! While focused on cartography and developing spatial awareness, Camilla Cartographer also explores what it’s like to see your environment in new and different natural conditions.  A Bank Street College Best Book of the Year “Wood's delightful illustrations and Dillemuth's expertise in the matter engage readers in the woodland creatures' adventures. In addition, Dillemuth, who holds a doctorate in geography, provides activities in the backmatter for parents and caregivers to help children develop their own spatial-reasoning skills, such as sketching and reading maps or using cardinal directions. An adorable adventure in cartography.” —Kirkus Reviews Hear Camilla, Cartographer, read aloud.  Read an excerpt from the Note to Parents and Caregivers in Camilla, Cartographer.  Grow Grateful, Grow Happy, and Grow Kind by Sage Foster-Lasser and Jon Lasser, PhD, illustrated by Christopher Lyles While these three books explore positive psychology and the process of developing kindness, happiness, and gratitude, all are set in the natural world and draw parallels between gardening or being in nature and these positive feelings. Grow Happy My name is Kiko. I'm a gardener. I grow happy. Let me show you how. Kiko shows the reader how she grows happiness: by making good choices, taking care of her body and mind, paying attention to her feelings, problem solving, and spending time with family and friends. Grow Grateful Head off with Kiko on a school camping trip and learn how she figures out what being grateful is and what it feels like. Maybe you can grow grateful, too! Grow Kind Kiko grows and cultivates her garden, harvesting and sharing the fruits and veggies with her friends, neighbors, and family. This delightful tale serves as a metaphor of nurturing relationships and community, while sharing kindness with others. Grow Kind is a gentle narrative based on positive psychology and choice theory, essentially about cultivating kindness. “In their follow-up to Grow Happy and Grow Grateful, the father-daughter

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Celebrate Earth Day! 2021-04-22T21:02:16-04:00

When a Dragon Comes to Stay: Interview with the Author

Remembering your manners when visiting with friends can be a challenge. Preschoolers and dragons will relate to Caryl Hart's book, When a Dragon Comes to Stay, as it explores different situations a small child, or dragon, might experience during a visit to a friend's house. Ms. Hart talked with Magination Press about creating When a Dragon Comes to Stay in this interview. Magination Press: What inspired you to write When a Dragon Comes to Stay? Caryl Hart: The initial idea for the book came from my editor at Nosy Crow. She asked me if I’d like to write a book about a preschool-aged dragon using the concept: “Why no, dragons don’t do that!” Of course I said yes straight away! MP: Why did you decide to write a book about manners? CH: We wanted to find a fun way to model good behavior for preschool children - to create a book that was engaging for children but also carried some universal messages to support parents. I do feel this has been especially important over the past year as children have been socializing less and have had fewer opportunities to work out how to get along with others. MP: Why did you choose a dragon to be the visitor? CH: Dragons are often cast as baddies in children’s literature so the expectation is that they will always be mean, scary, and unkind. Using a dragon as the main character gives us a unique opportunity to play with that role. The book first suggests how a dragon might behave - for example, will she snatch and keep the toys from other little girls and boys? But then quickly clarifies that in fact, a dragon will wait her turn and always share.  So the book gives caregivers and children lots of opportunities to discuss how they or their friends might deal with certain situations and experiment with ideas on the best ways to behave. Children love to take the higher moral ground, so find the idea of a dragon behaving badly very funny! It was also lovely to be able to create a very young dragon character - I think you’ll agree that Ros Beardshaw’s illustrations are absolutely adorable! MP: Why did you choose to explore manners at home, as opposed to manners at a party or somewhere else? CH: This book is set at home because we’re focusing on preschool children, many of whom spend a lot of time playing at home with their friends. The second book in the series, When a Dragon Goes to School is set, as the title suggests, in a school environment. We have more books in production that draw on different settings, so watch this space! MP: What was it like to see your illustrator Rosalind Beardshaw’s interpretation of your words? Was it your idea or hers to depict multiracial siblings? CH: Ros’s illustrations are completely adorable and I know it took a lot of work to get the characters just right. Both Ros and I are

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When a Dragon Comes to Stay: Interview with the Author 2021-03-15T23:04:48-04:00

Books to Help Your Child Develop a Healthy Self-Concept

In recognition of International Boost Self-Esteem Month, we’re highlighting some of our books to help your child explore and develop their sense of self. Especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, when everyone’s usual experiences and interactions have been disrupted, kids may be feeling less self-assured. These stories can help you and your child explore ways to foster a positive self-concept.   Being Me: A Kid’s Guide to Boosting Confidence and Self-Esteem by Wendy L. Moss, PhD explores confidence and provides tips and advice to build it. It also provides tools to explore strengths and feel more confident in school or with friends.     Blossom and Bud by Frank J. Sileo, PhD explores body image and will help kids love themselves all around, no matter their shape or size.       Fantastic You! by Danielle Dufayet celebrates individuality and encourages children to practice self-care, including positive self-talk and self-compassion. Hear Ms. Dufayet read Fantastic You! aloud here.     I Want Your Moo: A Story for Children About Self-Esteem by Marcella Bakur Weiner, EdD, PhD, and Jill Neimark explores how it feels to not like yourself and how empowering it can be to embrace your uniqueness in a fun, rhyming picture book.     Lucy’s Light by Jo Rooks Lucy is a lightning bug and the most talented flyer in the squad. There's just one problem: she doesn't light up! A sweet story which shines a light on inner confidence, self-acceptance, and courage. Lucy learns that doing a good deed will always make you shine bright! Read a post about Lucy’s Light and fostering a healthy self-concept here.   Neon Words: 10 Brilliant Ways to Light Up Your Writing by Marge Pellegrino and Kay Sather provides writing prompts and activities to connect the word-organizing part of the brain to the free-ranging imagination. Playing with words can boost confidence and help you be more present in life. Print out sample pages from Neon Words here.     So Many Smarts by Michael Genhart, PhD explores and celebrates all kinds of smarts—nature smarts, people smarts, music smarts, spatial smarts, and more. Hear Dr. Genhart read So Many Smarts! aloud here.     Why Am I Blue? A Story About Being Yourself by Kalli Dakos Everyone is different, and accepting differences in oneself and others can be challenging. Why am I Blue explores this concept and helps children toward understanding and accepting their own as well as others' differences and similarities. Read an interview with Kalli Dakos here.   Nurturing a healthy self-concept is a life-long task. Sharing books and talking with your child about this process can help them learn to recognize their strengths and build resilience.

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Books to Help Your Child Develop a Healthy Self-Concept 2021-02-22T20:01:11-05:00