Mindfulness is a big thing now-a-days, promoting a growth orientation. Mindful Day is a book geared to little ones, helping them learn to think in the moment. To carefully pay attention to what you are doing, slowing down using rhythmic breathing so you can experience everything you can.
What I am Reviewing
Mindful Day is written by Deborah Hopkinson, and is geared for children preschool to grade three. Illustrations are done by Shirley Ng-Benitez. 32 pages of lyrical narrative and illustrations to brighten each page. It plugs into the mindfulness movement to teach early concepts to young children. This children’s health book aim to help your children experience new and routine experiences in an emotionally healthy way. Published by Sounds True. I am reviewing this book for Raincoast Books.
Details of Mindful Day
In this picture book you will find a mom and her children going about their daily business. As they do so they will carefully pay attention to everything they are doing. They will often take the time to focus on their breathing.
Illustrator Shirley Ng-Benitez has taken the time to draw amazing pictures. I love the details she has incorporated.
From the cat meowing as the children have breakfast.
To the variety in the colours used on every page. This book is done in all the brilliant colours you find in life. The grey of a rainy day, the darkness of nightfall and fresh greens of the market. Lots of details to draw out of your children as you sit to read together.
With large letters and excellent use of white space you’ll find it a pleasure to read to a group of children. The simple lyrics roll well off the tongue. They are not done in a rhyming style, but more like a mom telling a story to her children, talking together about the day they have had. Remembering together all the things they experienced.
There is much in this book that I like, but I am having a hard time with this whole mindfulness element. Mindfulness tends to be fairly self-centered, a horizontal relationship between you and your view of the world.
I love the simple enjoyment of every day activities, taking the time relish them, and appreciate them in the moment. There is much to be said about appreciating what you have and taking the time to breathe through what happens in life that you don’t like.
BUT the element of mindfulness that runs clearly through Mindful Day has me concerned. I would issue this caution: if you are a person of faith, read it first and then decide if this book is right for you and your littles to read. Pay attention to the language used, change it if you must, work on the vertical relationship more than the horizontal.