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From the Mindfulness Moments for Kids series

Age-appropriate mindfulness practice that’s fine for tucking into an Easter basket and useful throughout the year.

A colorful bunny practices a morning mindfulness routine that young children can imitate.

Just what is needed in this stressful time: a book that shows young children and their caregivers how to slow down and just breathe. This latest in the Mindfulness Moments for Kids series, written by a children’s yoga-and-mindfulness musician, features a bunny hungry for a carrot but unsure where to look. Simple breathing exercises help Bunny focus until she becomes aware of subtle smells, even the scent of a carrot growing. Multicolored pastel animals—a squirel, a hedgehog, a fox, and a mouse—follow Bunny’s example, sitting up tall, holding still, and making “bunny paws.” The repeated instruction is especially effective: “Take quick little sniffs with your nose. SNIFF! SNIFF! SNIFF! Then let aaall the air out.” It is almost impossible to read those words without slowing and calming the breath. Without excess words or pedantry, Willey gives even adults new to mindfulness practice a way to help young children let go of anxiety and pause before reacting. Bunny and her animal friends are drawn in whimsical pastel colors against light backgrounds. The pictures become brighter and more energetic as Bunny awakens and bounds off to start her day with a carrot treat.

Age-appropriate mindfulness practice that’s fine for tucking into an Easter basket and useful throughout the year. (Board book. 1-4)

Pub Date: Feb. 25, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-11985-3

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Rodale Kids

Review Posted Online: April 7, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2020

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Bright, cheerful, and summery.

Revel in the pleasures of summer days.

The text’s three rhyming quatrains extol the season’s joys, from “birds in leafy trees” and “happy bees” to “eating berry pie” and “twinkling fireflies.” Cottage-dwelling woodland mammals get the full digital cartoon treatment, with giant eyes, exuberantly bushy tails, and bright clothing, hats, and eyewear. Readers see them enjoying a range of outdoor activities, from picnicking and splashing around in a pond to running barefoot in the grass and lounging in a hammock. The adorable diminutive mammals are the stars of the book, but the lively insects and birds make their presences felt too. This simple but sweet addition to the ever expanding bookshelf of estival books for younger children is more about imagery than plot, but that’s OK. The rhymes scan well, and the anaphoric repetition lends itself to read-alouds. The consistently double-page, full-bleed spreads allow readers to sense the scope of summer’s bounty. The artwork’s palette tracks the day’s arc, with morning yellows and greens ceding to violets and blues as twilight falls. Longhi’s illustrations fairly sparkle with light and Lisa Frank–esque colors. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Bright, cheerful, and summery. (Board book. 1-4)

Pub Date: May 10, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-66591-241-9

Page Count: 26

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 24, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2022

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From the Big Kid Power series

Simple words and big concepts will make this a godsend to parents at their wit's end.

This book seeks to use the power of persuasion to vanquish that most formidable of opponents: toddlers.

In this entry in the Big Kid Power series, a little black girl makes no bones about the fact that pacifiers (or “binkies”) are strictly baby territory. When she was little she needed one, but that was then. Whether she’s tired, sad, or hungry, there are other ways of being comforted: hugs and polite requests, for instance. After she gives her binky to a baby and bids it a very clear goodbye, the book ends with a triumphant, “I’M A BIG KID!” Using a striking color combination of orange, brown, and black, van Lieshout keeps her pages bold and bright, complementing the simple vocabulary. Such declarations as, “Do I still have a binky? // NO, BIG KIDS DON’T NEED A BINKY. / NOPE!” leave scant wiggle room for argument. In her author’s note at the end, van Lieshout says that after speaking to many parents about how they helped their kids bid their pacifiers adieu, “many of them had in common…a ritual of some sort.” The ritual here seems to be giving the pacifier away, though it may be missed by many readers. Companion title I Use the Potty uses a similar approach, with a proud, white boy as its guide.

Simple words and big concepts will make this a godsend to parents at their wit's end. (Picture book. 2-4)

Pub Date: March 8, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4521-3536-6

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Chronicle Books

Review Posted Online: Jan. 8, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2016

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