We Listen to Our Bodies (We Say What’s Okay)

Lydia Bowers, illus. by Isabel Muñoz. Free Spirit, $14.99 (36p) ISBN 978-1-63198-500-3
Centering the sensory experiences of preschooler Deja, a Black child with a floral headwrap and two pigtail puffs, this picture book imparts notable lessons about body awareness. When Deja feels “shivery” and pushes a classmate during a game of tag, her tan-skinned teacher Mr. B, who uses a wheelchair, comes over to discuss the impulse and how to address the feelings behind it. He also shares the importance of “listening to our bodies”—recognizing emotions and respective somatic responses—with the rest of the class. Muñoz’s bright digital illustrations feature a classroom populated mainly by teachers and children of color. Employing nuanced dialogue (“Your bodies are sending different messages... and that’s ok!”), the book offers a solid way to begin discussions on the topic. Back matter includes “Consent: A Guide for Caring Adults” and “We Listen to Our Bodies,” a song by Peaceful Schools. Ages 3–5. (Mar.)
Reviewed on : 02/10/2021
Release date: 03/01/2021
Genre: Children's
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