As a mom (and teacher), I strive everyday to engage, nurture, and expand the mind of my little one.
Here you will find the books, music, and activities most useful to me in my endeavors.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Funny Faces: Learning About Emotions

by Nicola Smee
(book image is a link to Amazon)

This delightful book about a little boy’s encounter with three playful bears perfectly illustrates the connection between feelings and expressions.

Another fabulous library find - I have been hitting the jackpot lately - this book sealed the deal on emotions for my toddler. After reading and discussing this book for a few weeks, she is now pointed to faces in all the other books we read and using words like, "happy, sad, angry, frightened, and worried," to describe them. I especially love NHV's worried expression ... looks more like a fish face than worried ... it's priceless!

A few months ago, my Natalie started making strong connections to happy and sad. From about 16 months or so, her daddy and I played a silly game of putting a big smile on our face and saying, "Happy!" and then making a frown face and saying, "Sad." She thought it was hilarious, and we appreciated the acknowledgement of our obvious acting talents - ha!

From there, I tried to help NHV identify when she was obviously feeling happy ... like when she gets to share a cookie with daddy or we decide to go to the zoo. Then came the mention of, "Oh, that baby sounds sad," whenever we'd hear a baby crying in the story. I am certain that one is bound to bite me in the rear when baby sister arrives and cries because she's hungry or needs a diaper change ... I am going to be hearing a lot of, "Baby sad?" from NHV!

This book was a very natural next step.
  • It is very, very simple, which means the text is minimal.
  • The story follows a boy's playing in the woods (happy) when a bear takes his ball (sad and then angry). The bear and its cubs return (worried and then frightened) to play with the boy (happy, again.) Those are the situations I can remember - had to return the book to the library just yesterday - I think there are 7 emotions/expressions in all.
  • The illustrations are hand-drawn (not "real" faces) but it's still very effective.
  • The last page is a mirror with a facing page that shows all the expressions covered in the story.

This is definitely a book worth checking out ... if you are working on the idea of emotions/expressions with your toddler :)

Which emotions does your toddler identify with? Do you use the word frustrated with your toddler?

Scroll down to the next post for your 5th (and final) chance to enter the Speks Sing Along CD GIVEAWAY! Contest will close Sunday evening. Winner will be announced on Monday, October 5th - just before I go pick up my mom from the airport ... woo hoo!

1 comment:

Chi-town momma said...

I'm bummed Chicago Public Library (the entire system) does not have this book!!! If any of you mommy's have another recommendation for one book that covers numerous emotions, we would really appreciate it!