:) World Smile Day :) 2014 :)

world smile dayToday, the first Friday in October, is World Smile Day!!! A day set aside for smiling and happiness and being kind to one another. The idea is to create a ripple effect of kindness. One person passing it on to another and another and ………..

I love ripple effects. I know that when I wag my tail at school, every person in that building feels it somehow. Awesome!

This world famous Smiley Face was created by Mr Harvey Ball in 1963. FIFTY years ago!!!! For a history of Mr Ball’s creation you can visit the Smile Day website HERE.

For my part today, I’m going to share with you a fun little smiley book —

IMG_1448Smile
by John A. Rowe
a minedition book
published by Penguin Young Readers Group in 2008

suitable for ages 3 and up

Themes – smiles, kindness, joy

It begins —
Once upon a time in a far away land there lived a king who never, ever smiled. He was called  King Grumpy.

The cover of this book features the cutest little pup with the happiest little grin. Greatness!!

But back to King Grumpy — he rules in Grumpy Land. The Queen is Grumpy and the five princes are all grumpy. Everyone in the land is grumpy. It’s a dark, dark place. Then, little Prince number six is born and chaos ensues! There is something wrong with his little face!!! Call all the doctors in the land! The pup is ill! He might be contagious!!

IMG_1450And contagious he was!! That strange thing on his face happens to be a smile! And over time it spread throughout the castle and then throughout the land. The King started smiling, then the Queen and all the little princes, then all the folks everywhere became happy! Light and Joy filled the land. Prince Smiley “reminded people how to smile again.”

Smiling IS contagious! Try it! Spread the JOY!!

Please visit the website for the Harvey Ball World Smile Foundation for more ways of spreading JOY throughout the world.

Here is an inspiring little story that I came across. It will make you smile!

I have a friend, Ms Barbara Gruener, who is all about Smiles and Kindness and Spreading Joy. She has a website called Corner on Character and every post she puts out there is an inspiration and a call to spread kindness. She recently had a post about a little girl at her school who wanted to spread some of that JOY. Read the story HERE. PLEASE read the story! And then go get some sticky notes. You’ll be glad you did!

big_smiley_face_sticky_notepadYou can find some Smiley Face Sticky Notes at Cafepress HERE.

Make some of these yummy, smiley cookies! You might even think about using bacon instead of chocolate!

Smiley-Face-chocolate-chip-cookiesThe World Smile Day website has a whole list of activities and printable materials to help you celebrate this big day.

Your next stop should be to visit Susanna Hill’s blog where she keeps a list of Perfect Picture Books and lots of useful and fun resources! This post is brought to you by — Perfect Picture Book Friday!

And here’s a little song to sing you on your way! The Smiley Face Song from Mr Harvey Ball! He’s got some Rhythm!

Now go out and spread some joy!
One little SMILE at a time!
Your wagging, smiling friend
Rhythm
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A Silly Goose and a Rotten Egg

We  had a big reading night at the library this week. Quite a few kids and quite a few books. Our two favorites were a cute story about kindness and good manners and a tale about a zany goose.

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Silly Tilly is by Eileen Spinelli and illustrated by David Slonim. It was published by Marshall Cavendish Children in 2009.

This was a really funny book. The kids all laughed a lot at Tilly’s zaniness. The rhyming text made it easy for the little ones to read along. “Tilly was a silly goose, a daffy-down-and-dilly goose, who took her baths in apple juice.” Pretty silly alright! But some of her antics were pretty mean. Like riding the farmer’s cat and tickling the frogs and sitting on Rooster’s birthday cake!! The illustrations were what was really funny. But the kids didn’t think that Tilly was a very nice goose. Finally the barnyard animals have their fill of Silly Tilly and tell her “That’s enough!” Tilly retreats to the barn and is very sad. The kids actually cheered for the other animals! But after some time the animals decide life is too quiet and boring without Tilly. So, they apologize to her and invite her back into their lives. She goes back to her silly stunts and the farm is happy again! The End!
Great! Except for one thing. She didn’t learn anything from the experience. She goes back to her mean-spirited pranks. The kids and me thought this was not a very good ending. Why would they want her back to juggle baby chicks and do cartwheels on the cow’s back? We didn’t like the ending. It would have been better if a nicer Tilly had returned to her friends.

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The next book provided us with a better ending.
Last One In Is a Rotten Egg is by Diane deGroat. It was published by Harper Collins in 2007 and is one in a series about Gilbert the possum.

Gilbert is a really cute little possum. A lot cuter than the possums I see around the 7 Acre Wood! In this story, Gilbert and his sister Lola were very excited that their cousin, Wally, was coming to visit. Gilbert really looked up to his bigger cousin and admired him. Wally was very rude. But Gilbert didn’t seem to notice. ( My reader kids did though!!) Wally always wanted to be first and would run and shout, “Last one there is a rotten egg!” He raced in the house knocking over things and raced to the table for lunch. The family was going to an Easter egg hunt that afternoon but Wally pooh-poohed the idea and said egg hunts were for babies. He talked with his mouth full! (the reader kids said that was very bad.) They went to the egg hunt and Wally was rude to Gilbert’s friends and then went racing and bulldozing around to find eggs. Lola was feeling bad because she had a hard time finding eggs so Gilbert helped her. They worked together. (the reader kids thought that was VERY big of Gilbert.) I won’t tell you the whole story. You need to read the book! But I will tell you that Wally gets his come-uppance in the end. Just like Silly Tilly. BUT, Wally learns a lesson from Gilbert and comes out better in the end. A much more satisfying ending!

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Both of these books provided time for some really fun conversation with the kids about good manners and kindness. These were some smart, good kids! We all had some good laughs at the funny pictures and now we’re looking forward to Easter and egg hunts!

I think you should check both of these books out and see what you think!

And I’ll leave you with a little video that shows how kindness always comes back around!

The Golden Rule

We recently had a note from our fabulous Aunt Chrissy who suggested we read a book called The Golden Rule. Our library didn’t have this book and we had to find it through the interlibrary loan service which is a fantastic thing. Anyway, this was all a good thing because The Golden Rule is a fabulous book. It was written by Ilene Cooper and illustrated by Gabi Swiatowska.

IMG_0819The book was published by Abrams Books for Young Readers in 2007. It is suitable for all ages. The theme is the Golden Rule, as in the title. Being kind and thoughtful to others.

The illustrations are exquisite. I don’t know what medium is used. I’m not very good with art details. I’m guessing maybe watercolors. But they take my breath away. Whew! It’s a simple story with a powerful message for everyone. A boy and his grandfather are taking a walk and see a billboard that says ” Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. “What does it mean?” The boy wanted to know. “and why is it golden?”

IMG_0817And the Grandfather proceeds to explain in quite simple terms what that lovely “rule” means. He tells the boy that he must use his imagination and imagine himself in someone else’s  shoes. How does that new girl in school feel and what would make her feel better? He explains that this rule is found in all the world’s religions. Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, and even Shawnee.

And how do you get the whole world to practice the Golden Rule? “It begins with You.”

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This book would be a good catalyst for discussions about helping others and being kind to each other. It addresses bullying and other cultures. As a class you might find ways to do community service projects or find some worthy cause to get involved with. It could fall in with Valentine’s Day and you could send notes to each other anonymously noting how special someone is.

We’re linking up today with Susanna Hill and Perfect Picture Book Friday. Check in with her for more fabulous picture books!

And a little song from James Taylor — Shed a Little Light!

Now y’all go out and be kind to someone today! And check out this book. It’s one to keep close to your heart! Spread Joy!! And Shed some Light!

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