“Show Me How!”…This Book Is A Perfect Parent & Teacher Holiday Gift

I would like to introduce you to one of my author friends, Vivian Kirkfield, who is an educator, parenting speaker and children’s author.  I have asked Vivian to be a Holiday Guest Blogger and tell you about her award-winning book for parents and teachers of preschoolers, Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking. Her book pinpoints 100 picture books every young child should read and provides a story summary, gentle parenting tip, eco-friendly craft project, and child-friendly healthful cooking activity for each recommended title.

Our family has enjoyed this remarkable book, which incorporates all the Brain Color attributes.
Yellow Brain: Well organized and detailed  information
Blue Brain: Creative activities and story prompts to share conversations with your children
Green Brain: Reading and learning from a well researched selection of books
Orange Brain: An abundance of  fun craft projects  and healthy cooking activities

I know  it will be a valuable addition to any family’s book collection and a memorable Holiday Gift, which will be treasured and used during the holiday and every day!

I have read and love all the books Vivian refers to in her blog post. Below are all the “Yellow Brain Details” about her her book, Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking. I hope you will enjoy reading about Vivian’s creative and engaging resource.

Now, Here’s Vivian…

“This value-packed resource has been endorsed by parents, teachers, self-esteem experts and national organizations such as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).  A portion of the book sale proceeds goes to the JDRF and various children’s literacy organizations.   The Show-Me-How Story-time Program has traveled to New Hampshire and Chicago and has been implemented in local kindergartens and she has a new Show Me How Picture Books and Crafts for Kids series on YouTube.  Ms. Kirkfield shares her passion for using picture books and positive parental participation to build self-esteem and strengthen the parent-child connection during her presentations to mom groups and teacher organizations and she will be presenting her hands-on workshop, “Building Literacy and Self-Esteem…One Picture Book at a Time” at the 2013 Asian Festival of Children’s Content, an annual international children’s literacy conference held in Singapore every May.

Show Me How! Build Self-Esteem With Picture Books!

“Read me one more story, please?” Just about every parent has heard this plaintive cry.   Young children love to listen to picture book stories and they enjoy cuddling close to daddy on a comfy couch or leaning back on mommy’s lap as they help to turn the dog-eared pages of a beloved book.

Why should we read picture books to young children?

  • We read with them for entertainment and enjoyment.
  • Picture books help young children deal with many of their challenges.
  • Children are able to relate the events in the book to their own experiences.
  • Studies show that children who are read to at an early age are more successful in school.

But which books should you read?  Thousands of titles are available at bookstores and libraries.  Which books should parents choose for their young children?

Here is my list of five top classic picture books…each book addresses different components of building self-esteem, one of the most priceless gifts we can help our children attain.

Leo the Late Bloomer by Robert Kraus
Mastering tasks and skills
is one of the most important components of a positive self-image.  Young children learn new things at an amazing rate, but each child is unique and has his or her own time-line.  In this story, a little lion named Leo is unable to do the things his friends can do, such as write his name and eat neatly.  His father is worried and questions Leo’s mother.  She reassures him that Leo will do everything in his own time.  She is proved right as Leo masters all of those skills.

What a beautiful story to read to any young child, but it may be especially helpful for children who seem behind age-mates.  Although it is important to be aware of the various stages of a child’s physical, intellectual and emotional development because the earlier a problem is detected, the faster help can be obtained; we need to remember that each child matures at his or her own pace and should not be compared with siblings or playmates.

Frederick by Leo Lionni
Valuing one’s own strengths and qualities
is the second component of high self-esteem. Frederick’s mouse family scurries around to collect seeds and nuts for the winter while Frederick seems to be daydreaming.  He explains that he is collecting sunshine, colors and words.  When winter comes and the long cold days and nights seem endless, Frederick entertains his family and lifts their spirits by reciting the poetry he composed while the other mice were collecting food.

Sometimes it is difficult to praise a child’s interests if that child does not enjoy doing what the rest of the family likes to do.  Remember that it is essential to provide opportunities to develop each child’s gifts.

Oliver Button is a Sissy by Tomie de Paola
The third component of building a positive self-image is to feel appreciated, loved and accepted for who we are.  In this story, Oliver enjoys walking in the woods, reading books and, most of all, dancing.  His father tries to convince him to play baseball or football and the boys tease him at school and call him a sissy, but Oliver continues to pursue the activities he enjoys.  When he performs in a talent show and his classmates watch him dance, they come to see him in a more favorable light.

How can we help our children feel appreciated, loved and accepted for who they are?  We can copy Oliver’s father who allowed his son to take dance lessons and then went to the talent show and praised him for his dancing.  Encourage your children to be themselves and remember not to compare them to others.

Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
Learning to express one’s feelings in a constructive way is the fourth component of high self-esteem.  In this story, Max chases after his pet dog with a fork and bangs nails into the wall with a hammer.  When he is sent to bed without any dinner, Max dreams that he sails to the land of the wild things where he is made king.  However, he misses his family and returns home to find his still-warm dinner is waiting for him in his room.

Young children can get into mischief, sometimes because they are sad or mad or upset about something that they have trouble talking about.  When you encourage your children to come to you with their problems, and you listen without judging, they will feel more comfortable expressing their emotions, whether they are positive or negative.

Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
Another component of a positive self-image is the ability to acknowledge and cope with one’s fears.  In this story, a little girl goes blueberry picking with her mother.  Meanwhile, a bear cub is also on a blueberry hunt with his mother.  Both girl and bear cub become separated from their own mothers and inadvertently begin following the wrong mother.  The mix-up is resolved and both Sal and Little Bear are reunited with the correct parent.

Kids often get anxious when they lose sight of their parents because they are afraid their parents will not return.  This story reassures young children that even if this happens (or their parents leave them at daycare or nursery school), the separation will only be a temporary one.  Remember to reassure your young children that someone will always be there to take care of them.

Looking for a fun-filled, self-esteem building, budget-friendly, educational activity for your young children?  Pick up a picture book and read to them! Wondering which book to choose…and want some quick and easy craft projects and child-friendly healthful recipes to try out with your children?  Pick up a copy of Show Me How!  Each book is signed and personally inscribed by the author and is available directly from the author or from the publisher (MoneyPenny Press) on Amazon.”

To find out more about Show Me How! or to contact Ms. Kirkfield:


Parenting blog: http://www.viviankirkfield.wordpress.com

Show Me How on Amazon

Show Me How on Kindle

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/viviankirkfield

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/showmehowbuildyourchildsselfessteem

Email: vivian@positiveparentalparticipation.com

I hope you have enjoyed Vivian’s Holiday Guest Post.

Happy Reading and Best Wises for the Holiday Season from Vivian and me!

Please Spread the Word



  1. […] had put away my picture book writing when I started working on my book for parents and teachers, “Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking.   Heart beating like a rock-band drummer, I immediately signed […]

  2. sheila on December 12, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    Vivian, I am glad your Orange Brain had FUN being a guest blogger. It was my Blue Brain Pleasure to spread the word about your remarkable book, which helps to build children’s self-esteem through reading memorable books, creating craft projects and yummy cooking activities! Thank you and Bust of Luck!

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  4. Erik - This Kid Reviews Books on December 13, 2012 at 6:20 pm

    Great post! I really like Show Me How!

  5. sheila on December 14, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    Erik, thank you for your comment. So glad you like Show Me How! That makes us 2 of many!

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