Spotlight on Mindfulness

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Here’s a roundup of Magination’s eight books that introduce young readers to mindfulness. Kids will learn how to combat stress, anxiety, and depression through reflection, breathing techniques, and other mind-healthy skills. Each book includes a Dear Reader or Note to Parents and Caregivers with more information about emotional awareness and mindfulness, plus practical advice and activities for introducing mindfulness into daily family routine.

How To Feel Good: 20 Things Teens Can Do
By Tricia Mangan

Being a teenager can be tough. It can be really hard sometimes to feel good about yourself and your abilities. New relationships and experiences are happening all around you, and that can make you insecure, overwhelmed, or stressed out.

How to Feel Good will help teens slow down and pay attention to how they feel and what they think about themselves. This book presents 20 simple, mind-healthy skills to guide readers toward self-awareness and to teach teens to stay calm and self-confident. Also included are additional strategies, self-reflection questions, and easy-to-do tools to help end frustration and develop patience to achieve goals.

Avoiding preachiness and gimmickry, Mangan aims to give teens tools to take happiness into their own hands. Suggestions for finding solace include avoiding comparing oneself to others, tackling procrastination, focusing on the positive, and accepting both the power and limits of one’s control. Each section offers various steps, activities, and goals (for example, Mangan advises finding a good fictional role model as a way to learn about becoming more assertive in real life). The tips are straightforward, and readers should feel empowered to know that solutions may be within their grasp.
Publishers Weekly

King Calm: Mindful Gorilla In The City
By Susan D. Sweet and Brenda S. Miles

King Calm introduces readers to the concept of living mindfully in a creative and practical and easy to apply way. Marvin isn’t like other gorillas. He doesn’t stomp his feet and he never ever pounds his chest with a thump thump roar. Marvin is mindful. He’s focused. He’s calm…and he’s about to teach his grandpa to be a king of calm, too!

King Calm: Mindful Gorilla in the City is expressly recommended, especially for family, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for children.
Midwest Book Review
This lively and edifying children’s book…makes a good case for mindfulness as a spiritual practice that brings alive our senses of tasting, seeing, feeling, smelling, and listening…Highly recommended!
Spirituality & Practice

For more, read interviews with the authors and illustrator on the Magination Press blog
• Meet Magination Press Author Brenda S. Miles
• Meet Magination Press Author Susan Sweet
• From Sketch to Book at Magination Press: Bryan Langdo

Mind Over Basketball: Coach Yourself To Handle Stress
By Jane Weierbach and Elizabeth Phillips-Hershey

Tuck is stressed out. His parents are divorced, he misses his father, and he has moved to a new house and school. When he decides to try out for the basketball team, the neighborhood boys won’t let him use “their” court to practice. With so many problems, Tuck is having a hard time feeling confident and dealing with his upsets. Then Walton shows up. Taking on the role of coach, Walton teaches Tuck not only how to play better basketball but also how to manage his anxiety and self-doubt. Soon Tuck is feeling in control of his life and focusing his energy on what he loves most…basketball!

Mind Over Basketball combines a high-interest chapter book and informative coaching guides with skills-training exercises, all designed to help kids learn to coach themselves through everyday worry and stress. The skills included are designed to teach kids to focus on now, use the breath to keep their cool, make choices that work, focus on the things that deserve attention, re-direct worries, and use rational and positive self-talk.

  • An Honors NAPPA (National Parenting Publications Awards) Winner!
  • Moonbeam Children’s Book Award for Juvenile Fiction (Silver)

By Lemniscates

What can you hear when you are completely silent? Is that the wind blowing? Birds chirping? Sun shining? World whirling? Maybe a car engine or faraway plane? Maybe kids laughing or playing tag? Beautifully illustrated and gently written, Silence encourages children to stop, listen, and reflect on their experiences and the world around them. By paying attention to what is otherwise lost in our noisy world, you can develop your imagination and curiosity and learn a lot more about yourself.

  • Bronze Medalist, Foreword Book of the Year Awards
This wonderful book developed by a studio of artists and designers in Barcelona is for children four through eight years of age. It makes a good case for silence and being really present with our bodies, the natural world, the seasons, and the reports of the senses.
—Spirituality & Practice
This eloquent book, collaboratively illustrated by the Lemniscates studio of artists and designers, invites readers to listen to what they hear during quiet moments…This is a lovely book to share with a child — or with anyone between 2 and 102.
Denver Post

 Read an interview with the author on the Magination Press blog


Visiting Feelings
By Lauren Rubenstein

Through purposeful and mindful exploration, Visiting Feelings harnesses a young child’s innate capacity to fully experience the present moment and invites children to sense, explore, and befriend all of their feelings with acceptance and equanimity. Visiting Feelings encourages children to treat their feelings like guests — welcome them in, get to know them, and perhaps learn why they are visiting.

  • Silver Medal, 2014 Nautilus Awards
  • Gold Medal, 2013 Mom’s Choice Awards
Visiting Feelings is not just for children, as we all need this gentle reminder to love ourselves, our feelings, and accept and embrace who we really are.
Elephant Journal
Through a poetic text, children are encouraged to identify and explore their emotions. Readers are asked to embrace their feelings, to treat them like friends…The full-page, digitally created illustrations feature hand-painted textures and overlays. They have a dreamy quality as the feelings swirl around the youngsters in soft pastel colors…The high-quality, appealing art will hold the attention of younger children…The book has a lot of potential for teaching students how to describe their reactions to different situations.
School Library Journal

A World Of Pausabilities: An Exercise In Mindfulness
By Frank J. Sileo, Illustrated By Jennifer Zivoin

Told in rhyming verse and beautifully illustrated, A World of Pausabilities is an inviting introduction to mindfulness. Following a neighborhood on a summer day, readers will learn how to apply mindfulness to simple, everyday moments, and how days are filled with endless possibilities to take a pause.

Sileo invites readers to explore the potential in “pausabilities”…he offers a wealth of ideas for how children and families can stay engaged in the present.
Publishers Weekly
This charming and delightful new book for children has beautiful illustrations and short poems that clearly and playfully express the essence of mindfulness. Best yet, it offers children simple guidance to incorporate and experiment with mindfulness in their lives.
—Diana Winston
Director of Mindfulness Education, UCLA’s Mindful Awareness Research Center, Author of Fully Present: The Science, Art and Practice of Mindfulness
Dr. Frank Sileo has written another incredibly beautiful and inspiring book for children. A World of Pausabilities cleverly and engagingly introduces kids to the concept of mindfulness, teaching them practical everyday skills to cope with the emotional ups and downs of life. This is a must-read for all children — and parents!
—Lawrence Rosen, MD
Integrative Pediatrician and Founder of The Whole Child Center
 For more, read interviews with the author and illustrator on the Magination Press blog
• Meet Magination Press Author Frank Sileo
• From Sketch to Book: Jennifer Zivoin

1-2-3 A Calmer Me: Helping Children Cope When Emotions Get Out of Control
By Colleen A. Patterson and Brenda S. Miles, Illustrated by Claire Keay

It’s okay to feel mad. This is what I do to help me feel better. I stop and say a rhyme. Let’s try it together. 1-2-3 A Calmer Me introduces children to a simple rhyme they can use to slow down their bodies and stop mad feelings from spinning out of control.

1-2-3 A Calmer Me is a most hopeful book to give children a tool that will help them release and control their uncomfortable emotions or angry feelings, helping them prevent meltdowns and upsets.
Midwest Book Review
For more, read interviews with the authors on the Magination Press blog
Meet Magination Press Author Brenda S. Miles
Meet Magination Press Author Colleen Patterson

Take the Time: Mindfulness for Kids
Written and Illustrated by Maud Roegiers

With gentle rhythms and soothing imagery, Take the Time guides kids toward self-awareness and mindfulness. And when any old day feels topsy-turvy, mindfulness tools may help your child calm down and feel better.

  • Nautilus Silver Award Winner

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