Steps and Stones: An Anh's Anger Storyby Gail Silver, Christiane Krömer
When Anh’s friends leave and he feels left out at school, his anger shows up to keep him company. Anh the protagonist of Gail Silver’s previous book Anh’s Anger, is a typical and easy-to-relate-to elementary school-age boy. His anger, personified as a red hairy impulsive creature, teaches him some valuable lessons about not getting carried/i>… See more details below
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When Anh’s friends leave and he feels left out at school, his anger shows up to keep him company. Anh the protagonist of Gail Silver’s previous book Anh’s Anger, is a typical and easy-to-relate-to elementary school-age boy. His anger, personified as a red hairy impulsive creature, teaches him some valuable lessons about not getting carried away by his strong emotions. By counting his steps and coordinating them with his breathing Anh is able to slow down and take his anger for a peaceful and magically transformative walk.
Reach and Teach.com called Anh’s Anger, One of the best books we’ve ever seen on the issue of dealing with anger.” The New Yorker review highlighted how the book uses deep breathing to regain control during a tantrum.” And Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh calls the Anh’s Anger series, a wonderful gift for both children and adults who want to learn how to turn unhappy situations into joyful ones.”
Steps and Stones the second of the Anh’s Anger Story trilogy will help children learn to understand the causes of their own strong emotions, and teaches them peaceful ways to resolve difficulties through mindfulness and meditation. An invaluable tool for parents and teachers alike.
Steps and Stones is beautifully illustrated by New York artist and children’s book illustrator Christiane Krömer. Using a mix of paper, acrylic, cardboard, and found materials, her vibrant multi-textured collages reflect the connection between the characters and their environment and echo the wide range of emotions that come together in the story.
Gail Silver writes: If, at an early age, children become comfortable with identifying and articulating their anger, then they can feel confident working through anger in healthy ways during their adolescent years. There is a lot of adolescent violence in the news today. I am overwhelmed with pain and sadness every time I hear of an adolescent using a gun. While these teens are deeply troubled and have many problems, unresolved anger plays a part in their difficulty. I hope these books can be used as a preventative resource. We can only practice what we know or what we are willing to learn. My hope is that the Anh’s Anger stories can contribute to a decrease in adolescent aggression and violence by teaching children at an early age how to safely understand and express their anger.”
"This offbeat story makes the potentially cerebral topic of dealing appropriately with anger simple and delightfully visual. Krömer’s predominantly green palette in collages combined with brush and pencil drawings is almost contagiously soothing, and makes the red of Anger visually exclamatory. In their second collaboration, Silver and Krömer (Anh’s Anger) have developed a winning series."Publishers Weekly
"My lessons on keeping your cool in school just got a whole lot better. This is the sequel to Ahn's Anger and it is an ESSENTIAL resource...As a school counselor, I rely on books like this to help teach calming down techniques kids will actually use...I am thrilled to share such a healing book with our students, especially those who are stuck in constant anger. Parents, teachers, and counselors will appreciate having this on their shelf when they need to teach or reteach this important skill."Books That Heal Kids
Silver and Krömer pair their considerable talents to create a successful second title in the Anh's Anger series (Anh's Anger, 2009).
Here Anh faces a common childhood dilemma: He wants to do one thing (dig in the dirt at recess), while his friends are set on doing another (playing kickball). He tries to convince his friends to join him, but one boy retorts, "Digging is for babies." This crushes Ahn; he "felt like he'd been punched in the stomach." As Anh retreats to "the shade of the oak tree" with "a salty tear rounding the corner of his lip," Anger explodes onto the scene in a wild collage of green, red and yellow textures with spiral, swirly eyes and a mouthful of sharp teeth. He reminds Anh that he "always show[s] up when things aren't going your way." This personification of Anger fills Anh's head with negative thoughts, but Anh resists its goading and begins to walk slowly. With each step they breathe in and out and count. This walking meditation helps Anh get control of his feelings. As the counting increases, Anger's vibrant colors begin to fade, and his size diminishes. Silver's dialogue-driven text is likely to provoke meaningful discussions about dealing with disappointment and controlling tempers. Preschoolers and primary-grade students will appreciate Krömer's visual feast of pencil, paint and tactile collage elements used to vividly illustrate Anh's story.
Sure to fill a niche for those tackling potentially thorny social situations, this straightforward and enlightened approach will appeal to many. (Picture book. 4-7)
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