Parents and caregivers often ask me to suggest a particular book to help them open up a conversation with their child. Perhaps because the topic may be difficult to talk about – like the loss of a pet, bullying or a family break-up.
I was reminded of these ‘asks’ following the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida. I read a blog that shared ways parents can talk with their children, whatever their age, about a terrible event. The blog stressed that ideally the conversation is less about the awful thing that happened and rather about their child’s feelings in response. No matter their age, reassuring a child that they are loved and safe, correcting any misinformation, and listening to them share their feelings is what helps most.
As I read the blog, I felt sad that our children are experiencing a world where increasingly frightening things happen; where the ‘dangers of strangers’ is at times, it seems, on steroids.
So my book recommendation today, is one that spreads the message of good people. In my world, and I hope in yours too, most of the people I connect with are thoughtful and kind. For the most part, they stay optimistic, think the best of others and help where they can.
In the company of two pairs of siblings we get to see what they see: the hulking dude with tattoos and chains assisting an elderly lady onto the bus; the teenager with piercings and purple hair returning a lost wallet to its owner; and the myriad interactions of daily existence, most of them well intended.
Here are some of the reflective passages from this book:
Most people love to smile. Most people love to laugh. Most people love to see other people smile and laugh too. Most people are good people.
Most people like a kind word. Most people like thinking good thoughts about others.
When you see something bad happening, you may soon see someone trying to help. That helper might be you!
Someone is always there being good, because being good is what most people do.
I hope you have the opportunity to share this uplifting book with a child in your life.
And, coming soon to the Resources section of our website will be themed book lists that hopefully inspire many more important and meaningful conversations.
Steacy Collyer, Executive Director, Calgary Reads