RadKid.Org: Reactive Attachment Disorder

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Reactive Attachment Disorder: Resources: Books for Radishes




The Velveteen Rabbit, by Margery Williams, William Nicholson (Illustrator).
A stuffed toy rabbit (with real thread whiskers) comes to life in Margery Williams's timeless tale of the transformative power of love. Given as a Christmas gift to a young boy, the Velveteen Rabbit lives in the nursery with all of the other toys, waiting for the day when the Boy (as he is called) will choose him as a playmate. In time, the shy Rabbit befriends the tattered Skin Horse, the wisest resident of the nursery, who reveals the goal of all nursery toys: to be made "real" through the love of a human. "'Real isn't how you are made,' said the Skin Horse. 'It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.'" This sentimental classic--perfect for any child who's ever thought that maybe, just maybe, his or her toys have feelings - has been charming children since its first publication in 1922. 48 pages.



The Fire Cat, by Esther Averill.
A story about a cat that is mean to other cats, and makes a lot of inappropriate choices. He?s given a nice place to live, yet still he makes the wrong choices. Eventually, he learns to make the right choices, to have friends, and to live a good life. 64 Age 4-8. 64 pages.



Aarvy Aardvark Finds Hope, by Donna R. O?Toole.
A lot of RAD kids cover up their sadness with anger. This book talks about being horribly sad, feeling a loss, and gradually learning from their sadness. For children who don?t feel sad very often, this gives them an insight into an emotion they might otherwise push aside and hide. Age 5 and up. 80 pages.



The Fall of Freddie the Leaf: A Story of Life for All Ages, by Leo Buscaglia.
Originally published in the fall of 1982, the wonderfully wise and strikingly simple story of a leaf named Freddie has become one of the most popular books of our times. How Freddie and his companion leaves change with the passing seasons, finally falling to the ground with a winter's snow, is an inspiring allegory illustrating the delicate balance between life and death. After offering solace for a generation of adults and children alike, The Fall of Freddie the Leaf arrives in a classic edition with a beautiful new package that will appeal to today's readers at a time when stories of comfort and inspiration have become more important than ever. Ages 4-8. 32 pages.



Today I Feel Silly: And Other Moods That Make My Day, by Jamie Lee Curtis, Laura Cornell (Illustrator).
Jamie Lee Curtis has starred in many movies, but she says that the children's books she has written mean more to her than any of her films. She and artist Laura Cornell have previously collaborated on two bestselling books: "Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born" and "When I Was Little: A Four-Year-Old's Memoir of Her Youth." This time, we follow a little girl with curly red hair through 13 different moods, beginning with silly: "Today I feel silly. / Mom says it's the heat. I put rouge on the cat / and gloves on my feet." Of course, silly soon turns to grumpy and mean... to excited... to confused, and so on. Recognizing one's own mood swings is a developmental milestone, one that some adults haven't yet mastered! Cornell's watercolor illustrations - wildly expressive and energetic - effectively capture the volatility of our redheaded star. Whether she is happy or mad or dancing a solo in jazz, she is always "full of pizzazz," and this book is, too. A clever mood wheel on the last page allows young readers to change the little girl's expression - both her eyes and mouth. This is silly fun with a smart lesson for children from ages 4 to 8. 40 pages.



Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born, by Jamie Lee Curtis, Laura Cornell (Illustrator).
Actress Curtis's return engagement amply confirms the promise shown in her debut picture book (When I Was Little). A sweet and sunny look at adoption, the story is framed as a much-loved and clearly much-requested family tale, and rings true from beginning to end. Combining wit ("Tell me again how you carried me like a china doll all the way home and how you glared at anyone who sneezed") with candor ("Tell me again how you couldn't grow a baby in your tummy, so another woman who was too young to take care of me was growing me"), Curtis deftly addresses the logistics of adoption in a matter-of-fact manner that radiates love and reassurance. Cornell, who also illustrated Curtis's previous books, again serves up whimsical, Roz Chast-like watercolors crammed with amusing visual asides: a jar of diaper cream sports the label "Tub o' Lard"; a tiny bandage on a newborn's tummy carries the notice "future bellybutton"; a little girl and her dog, tucked cozily into bed, wear matching curlers (the girl's in her hair; the pup's on his ears). It's hard to imagine a warmer celebration of the special joys of an adopted family. Ages 4-8. 40 pages.



Sad Isn?t Bad : A Good Grief Workbook, by Michaelene Mundy.
Loaded with positive, life-affirming advice for coping with loss as a child, this guide tells children what they need to know after a loss - that the world is still safe; life is good; and hurting hearts do mend. Written by a school counselor, this book helps comfort children facing of the worst and hardest kind of reality. Age 4-8. 29 pages.



The Absolutely True, Positively Awesome Book About Me!!!, by Jessica Wilber.
From the author of "Totally Private and Personal: Journaling Ideas for Girls and Young Women", who is also a high school junior, comes a new volume on creative journaling ideas, fun activities, advice on growing up, and more for girls ages six to ten. Age 6-10. 127 pages.



I Feel Happy and Sad and Angry and Glad, by Mary Murphy.
PreSchool-Grade 1-A cursory introduction to emotions. When Milo's friend Ellie comes over for the day, the two pups explore the backyard and play hide-and-seek. The visit ends on a bad note when Milo is reluctant to share a scooter, and his friend goes home with her feelings hurt. After thinking it over, he apologizes and the two are reunited. The story is told from Milo's point of view in short, simple sentences that relate events and describe the way they make the characters feel ("We chase. We feel happy" or "I show Ellie my scooter. I feel proud"). Dialogue balloons punctuate the text and help to clarify the dogs' emotions. The colorful, eye-catching illustrations feature simple figures outlined with thick black lines set against bright hues. The uncluttered backgrounds and clean lines focus attention on the interaction between the two animals. While the repetition in the text hinders the punch of the story, this book might still be useful in helping children to identify their feelings and to begin to understand the complicated nature of friendship. Preschool-Grade 1 ages. 32 pages.



Even If I Did Something Awful?, by Barbara Shook Hazen, Nancy Kincade (Illustrator).
A story of unconditional love which allows the child to put him or herself into the role. A lesson of responsibility. Age 4-8. 32 pages.



No, David!, by David Shannon (Illustrator).
Parents will be quick to jump to the conclusion that there can be nothing appealing in a tale of an ugly kid who breaks things. And certainly - from that adult perspective - there's something off-putting about the illustrations of David, with his potato head, feral eyes, and a maniacal grin that exposes ferociously pointed teeth. But 3- and 4-year-olds see things differently, and will find his relentless badness both funny and liberating. "No, David," wails the off-stage mother, as David reaches for the cookie jar. "No! No! No!" as he makes a swamp out of the bathroom. "Come back here, David!" as he runs naked down the street. Each vivid double-page illustration is devoted to a different youthful indiscretion and a different vain parental plea. Readers will be amused to know that the protagonist's name is no accident: award-winning writer-illustrator David Shannon wrote the book after discovering a similar effort that he had made, again with himself at the center of each drawing, at the age of 5. Ages 3-6. 32 pages.

Note: When available, and when money is an object, please consider purchasing a used book rather than a new one. While I don't earn nearly as much of a commission on the sale of used books, the difference in cost to you is worth considering. With the money you've saved, go out and buy yourself something. -- ken


Last Modified on: Saturday, August 08, 2009



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