It is my “Blue Brain“ honor to introduce my guest blogger, Vivian Kirkfield, author of Show Me How book, which is the first in the series of “Positive Parental Participation Series”. Vivian’s book is remarkable “Green Brain“ resource to help parents, grandparents, teachers, friends and family members build a child’s self esteem through reading, crafting and cooking.
Vivian Kirkfield has utilized her extensive teaching experience and love for children to write a valuable, timely and timeless book that every parent, grandparent and child will love. Show Me How encourages each child’s individual learning modalities in an engaging, creative and fun format. The reading, crafting and cooking sections are well organized, the detailed instructions are easy to comprehend, and the illustrations are delightfully charming. Each story and activity reinforces chapter concepts with a variety of opportunities to increase a child’s level of healthy self esteem and achievement. Vivian’s knowledge, generosity, insight and wisdom make this book a must for every kitchen bookshelf. I’m looking forward sharing it with my grandchildren. It is sure to be a family favorite!”
This book is a perfect Chunukah, Christmas, Birthday or “Love” Gift any time of the year. I’m sure adults and children will enjoy sharing the stories and activities, while creating delicious and delightful memories!
My love affair with children’s picture books began over fifty years ago as I helped my mother turn the pages of THE LITTLE HOUSE by Virginia Lee Burton. During my years as a kindergarten and Head Start teacher, I formulated a program that utilized picture books, not only for entertainment and enjoyment, but also to help children deal with the many challenges they encounter in those early years.
SHOW ME HOW! BUILD YOUR CHILD’S SELF-ESTEEM THROUGH READING, CRAFTING AND COOKING is a unique resource for parents, grandparents and teachers of preschoolers – it presents that simple, yet effective program in an easy-to-use format. The book pinpoints 100 picture books every young child should hear and provides a story summary, parenting tip, eco-friendly craft project and child-friendly healthful recipe for each recommended story.
Why picture books, you may ask? A picture book is an amazing tool to help develop story sense. There is a beginning, middle, and an end. These books often present issues that young children are currently dealing with. Picture books allow children to practice the sounds of language…repetition, rhyme, rhythm…and they are multi-sensory…the child hears the story and sees the pictures and feels the pages. The illustrations help children understand the story and develop an appreciation for art. Most of all, picture books are enjoyable and entertaining and if we want to encourage our young children to love reading and books, we need to make their first experiences with reading fun and something to look forward to. Although it can sometimes be frustrating when a young child says, “One more story, please!”…isn’t that what we are aiming for?
There are a couple of cool things about the book. We all know how overwhelming it can be to walk into a library or bookstore. Which book should we pick from the thousands available? My child is afraid of the dark…is there a book I can read that will help him overcome that fear? We’ve just bought a new house and our 4-year old is angry about moving and leaving his friends. SHOW ME HOW! answers these questions by providing a summary for 100 of the best-ever picture books for young children…many of the classics and some of the newer titles as well. There are six chapters, each addressing one of the six components of building self-esteem.
• In Chapter One – I CAN DO IT MYSELF, you’ll find books like LITTLE TOOT and THE CARROT SEED that help children master tasks and skills.
• In Chapter Two – I’M SPECIAL, books like BRAVO MAURICE and THE LITTLE RED CABOOSE will help your child value his own strengths and qualities.
• In Chapter Three – I LOVE YOU AND YOU LOVE ME, story selections such as THE UGLY DUCKLING and OLIVER BUTTON IS A SISSY help your child feel appreciated, loved and accepted.
• Picture books such as WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE and GOODBYE MOUSIE are found in Chapter Four – I AM REALLY MAD RIGHT NOW, helping your child learn to express her feelings.
• In Chapter Five – I’M AFRAID, your child will be helped to acknowledge and overcome his fears with books like BLUEBERRIES FOR SAL and DON’T WORRY, I’LL FIND YOU.
• Finally, in Chapter Six – I LIKE MYSELF, you’ll find titles such as A LION FOR LEWIS and I’M TERRIFIC which will help your child feel good about himself and his body.
Are you already so busy you don’t know how you will have the time to use this book? No problem! Each story is linked to an easy age-appropriate craft project and a simple nutritional recipe…a great shortcut for busy parents who want to provide educational, fun-filled self-esteem building activities. And don’t worry about high tech art supplies or elaborate ingredients! You probably have most of the supplies you’ll need lying around the house. You will find activities like making collages, paper plate animals and sock puppets and recipes such as freshly squeezed orange juice and a cereal trail mix to take along when shopping with your little one.
One of the most helpful parts of the book for parents may be the Positive Parental Participation notes. Each story summary/craft project/cooking activity unit is accompanied by a short parenting tip to help point out the “lesson” of that story. These little statements help remind us how much of an impact and influence we have on our children. We all need a cheering committee, and parents are a child’s most important fans!
Can I tell you about my most recent experience using the book? Just two months ago, I had the joyful pleasure that every grandmother looks forward to… I spent almost two weeks in New Hampshire with my daughter and her family. Each day I read one of the picture books recommended in SHOW ME HOW! to her two-year old son, Jeremy. Then we would work together on the craft project and cooking activity linked to the story. I think his favorite was THE LITTLE ENGINE THAT COULD. After reading the story about the little engine who rescued the train carrying toys and food for the children on the other side of the mountain, we talked about how we all need to keep on trying when we have a difficult task.
Two-year olds may not always be able to verbally express what they are thinking, but you can be sure that they ARE thinking. Jeremy especially enjoyed pasting the geometric shapes onto a piece of construction paper to form a train and pushing the metal paper fasteners through the paper wheels so that the whe
els on the train could turn “round and round”. We then made applesauce (the train carried apples to the children) and he had fun washing the apples and helping mix the apple slices with cinnamon in the bowl. But most of all, he LOVED eating the homemade applesauce after it had cooled.
Young children gain a sense of confidence and competence when they do craft projects and help prepare food. And, if you have a fussy eater, your child may be willing to try new foods if he has helped prepare them.
As parents, we all want our children to be happy and successful in life…and experts say that a positive self-image can be a contributing factor. We are all looking for a way to do things better. SHOW ME HOW! can be a road map for parents to build that self-esteem and develop a life-long parent-child bond.
I enjoy hiking and fly-fishing with my husband of forty-three years when I’m not reading, crafting and cooking.
Vivian, Congratulations and Best Wishes for an Abundance of Success!
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