For those of you who are not familiar with Todd Parr, he is an amazing author/illustrator of more than 40 children’s books. Parr’s books encompass social issues that are prevalent in the lives of today’s children, but in simplistic terms. His books include the New York Time’s bestselling The I Love You Book, The Earth Book, and The Thankful Book. My favorite is The Family Book, which includes families with two moms and a family with two dads. Parr’s other books include The Feelings Book, It’s Okay to Be Different, The Peace Book, and many more. Be sure to check them out at your local library and be ready to become enthralled with this wonderful author and his charming books. Below I will review two that our local librarian, Jo, loves, and were also favorites of the children that attended her Storyhour at our public library.
Teachers Rock! by Todd Parr
Being a teacher for 36 years you know I am going to LOVE this book, right? The first page starts out with a picture of a huge heart and the text, “I love my teachers because…” As the book unfolds, each page has a reason why children love their teachers. My favorite reasons include, “They make sure students have everything they need.” (with an illustration of teachers buying school supplies for their students), “Teachers can be just like you and me.” (the illustration shows the teacher brushing her teeth, sleeping in a bed and picking out underwear), and “Most of all, they love to see you succeed!” (with an illustration of students in graduation gown). I love this book because it shows children (and parents) how much teachers actually do for their students, and how much they care for their students. The last page reminds children to thank their teachers every day, which just makes my heart sing. As usual, Parr’s illustrations are fun and colorful and full of funny little details that will make you smile.
Be Who You Are, by Todd Parr
Todd Parr’s note to readers states that growing up he was different from all of his friends, and that he was constantly trying to find ways to fit in and be like everyone else. He finally realized that it was “easier and more fun to just BE WHO YOU ARE.” This book celebrates every child-their color, what they choose to wear, what language they speak and the feelings they have. Parr encourages us to be silly, have fun, be courageous, discover, learn, and share your feelings. No matter who you are or what you do, look like or where you live, Parr makes you feel like you are special and unique, and that that’s wonderful. Parr uses his trademark colorful illustrations that make his books appealing to all. You won’t be disappointed with any of Todd Parr’s books.