Written in partnership with Thomas Herd, Founder of T1 Advertising
Though many positive advances have been made in recent years surrounding children’s mental health, unforeseen circumstances brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and caused many kids to suffer from its isolating effects. According to data collected by the United Nations Children’s Fund, one in every seven children has been negatively affected by coronavirus mentally, a disheartening trend only set to continue as new variants emerge and we begin to enter the third year of the pandemic. One such way to combat these adverse effects is utilizing social-emotional learning concepts, a form of teaching highly-touted by children’s psychiatrists for its ability to help kids understand and manage their feelings and behaviors, which can now be taught easily both at home and in the classroom thanks to author Lauren Grabois Fischer’s uplifting series of children’s books, The Be Books.
Rather than letting children become overwhelmed and scared by their feelings, social-emotional learning concepts instead encourage them to embrace how they feel, communicate about what made them feel that way, and healthily process the situation rather than bottling things up inside. The theory itself is formed around five key principles: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills and making positive decisions – all components found within Grabois Fischer’s books that help kids work toward a nicer and uplifting youth culture.
“As a mom and educator, I know the power a book can have on a person,” says Grabois Fischer. “Raising my own children, I knew I wanted to create books that would create a kinder and more accepting world around them and within them. Thus, ‘The Be Books’ was born. I wanted to remind all children to ‘be’ kind, ‘be’ accepting, ‘be’ grateful, ‘be’ positive, ‘be’ themselves!”
Between volumes that promote kindness and positivity like ‘Love Grows Love’ and entries like ‘The Light Within Me’ that encourages gratitude and mindfulness, ‘The Be Books’ eight book collection has something for every kid to resonate with and to learn from. Featuring simple yet engaging worksheets and discussion questions in the back of every book, teachers and parents can help cement the social-emotional learning concepts kids just read about deeply into their minds through the provided materials.
While social-emotional learning concepts have yet to be implemented on a wide scale to combat children’s coronavirus-born mental health struggles, Grabois Fischer’s ‘The Be Books’ makes integrating these lessons at home easier than ever, turning story time into an exciting learning opportunity that kids are both excited to take part in and ultimately benefit from in their day-to-day-lives.