All About Me: Fostering Self-Discovery
Encourage self-discovery with these selections that teach children about themselves from the inside out. Every bone in your body has a special place and job to do to help you move and explore your world — a world that also can make you feel a rollercoaster of emotions. Reading these books with children can spark their interest and understanding of how they interact with their world in mind and body, at work and at play.
As they play an imaginary game of opposites and contrasts, the children in You and Me (Barefoot Books, $10.99) explore valleys and hills, light and dark, and hot and cold, but find that in the end, it's best when "You're you, and I'm me." This large board book with its simple rhyming text is an entertaining way to help children understand contrasts in their world. Written by Stella Blackstone and illustrated by Giovanni Manna. Ages 1-4.
In Busy Bees at Work and Play (Greenleaf Book Group Press, $14.95) a mother bee shows her child how different types of workers help the community while pointing out that there is a time for work and a time for play. Written by M. Maitland De Land and illustrated by Lyn Martin. Ages 4-8.
Explore a world of emotion with young readers in Happy, Sad, Silly, Mad: My World Makes Me Feel by John E. Mitchell and Jana Christy (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, $16.99). Filled with vibrant colors, this book portrays a range of emotions. While the beach might invoke bravery, home brings a warm feeling of love. Ages 4-8.
My Name Is Not Isabella (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, $16.99) is an enticing dialogue between a mother and daughter in which the daughter imagines all of the many types of people she could become. Written by Jennifer Fosberry and illustrated by Mike Litwin, it is a clever introduction to the lives of influential women who have changed the course of history, as well as an endearing illustration of how young girls can become empowered and confident. Ages 4-8.
Kids can discover how their bodies work with My Silly Body and Book (Workman, $13.95) by Paul Hanson, which contains a life-size, interactive, die-cut figure that teaches youngster the basics of the human body. Accompanying the body cutout is a 64-page illustrated owner's manual for boys and girls. Ages 4-8.
In Bones (Scholastic, $16.99) author Steve Jenkins relates the differences between human and animal bones. Many of the illustrations, such as that of the human hand, are pictured in actual sizes. Humor abounds with clever headings like "Some Assembly Required" on a spread with all 206 adult human bones unlabeled and grouped by body area. It also includes a gatefold of a complete skeleton as well as of a small python and a collection of skulls. Ages 7-10.
Yoga Pretzels: 50 Fun Yoga Activities for Kids & Grownups (Barefoot Books, $14.99) is an oversize deck of colorful cards with illustrations of 50 yoga poses designed to help kids and adults develop physical fitness, emotional intelligence and stress management. Written by Leah Kalish and Tara Guber; illustrated by Sophie Fatus. All ages.