Reviews - What do customers think about When Someone Very Special Dies: Children Can Learn to Cope with Grief?
OUTSTANDING BOOK...DESERVES EVEN MORE STARS... Dec 29, 2006
This book's simplicity is inviting, comfortable and un-intimidating for a young child (our daughter is 6-years-old; her grandma died very suddenly...). The book involves children in drawing and coloring as a part of learning, and becoming COMFORTABLE, with the concept of the natural stages of life - birth to death. Since drawing and coloring are a natural part of a young child's activities, they feel right at home with this book. This is not just a coloring book. The exercises are quite specific, and so simple, but make SO MUCH SENSE!! I also love the fact that there is VERY little reading for the parent to do, because emotionally, I'm not up to it right now. So this approach is simpler and less heart-wrenching for all of us. NOTE: Even if you think your child is dealing just fine with the loss of a loved one, I highly suggest you get this book anyway. Our daughter didn't start exhibiting signs of stress, anxiety and fear until 4 months after her grandmother died. The concepts in this book are HEALTHY and HELPFUL, no matter how your child is dealing with their loss. This may even be a great book for a child who hasn't lost anyone yet, because it is an inevitable part of life.
One Of the very best books available on such a delicate topic Jun 28, 2006
I researched for many days every book avalable on this subject, as my husband left me a young widow at 26, dying very suddenly and tragically of a brain annuerisym in the middle of the night, beside me in the car - two weeks before Thanksgiving. Although I am cursed that I have not been left with our own child, he did leave behind several nieces and nephews profoundly attached to him; he was the most loving and adoring man toward children, much like one himself, which is why they loved him so...... so I knew when he died, looking at their faces they simply could not understand, - let alone cope or come to terms.... to make matters worse, the rest of the family demanded I not cry or show emotion in front of them - "Don't upset the children"...... what a terrible mistake. Hiding your emotions from such delicate and tender minds teaches them to hide and be confused about their own feelings.It was so painful for me to not only lose him, but feel I could not have or give support to those who suffered with me. I had to find some way to intervine, because I knew in my heart and soul the way the children were being treated - excluded, hidden away, avoided, not even spoken to or allowed to be present during the many gatherings of his hundreds of friends who came to visit over the week, etc.... was detrimental and only causing them more harm and hurt...... So I sought to do the only thing I had any power to in the situation, since my own position was not respected or honored in the family (THEY BLAME ME FOR HIS DEATH, BECAUSE I "SHOULD HAVE KNOWN SOMETHING WAS WRONG" I "LET HIM DIE" and I "DIDN'T GET HIM TO THE HOSPITAL OR GET HELP IN TIME".) So much anger - and that is what the children saw... it left me wondering if they themselves wondered if it was me who had caused his death, knowing they heard every cruel and scathing remark made to me .... I searched out to find a book that might help these children express, emote, release their feelings.... the therapy they very much needed if any healing would take place, because no one was trying to give them the outlet or opportunity to do so.... Finding this book was truly a blessing. It is done in the very best format for a child, --- allowing them to draw, write, color, -- providing several projects and posing many questions that allow them to express themselves the way children do best --- through their own art and writing. And best of all, -- it reaffirms constantly what the child NEEDS to hear - nothing you said or did caused this, it is not the fault of yours or anyone elses -- but a natural part of life...... Beautifully written, incredibly sensitive toward the child's psyche and means of thinking, --- one of the very best books for any child that is suffering from the loss of a beloved and close famiy, friend, -- even a pet..... and gives them something to hold onto and reflect upon as they grow and age to see how they have evolved from this tragedy. It is a journal, a sketchbook, a workbook, a friend, - a keepsake......Highly recommended, amazing, and very touching.
An Important Book For Every Teacher To Have Jan 25, 2005
Learning to cope with difficult emotions is a most important achievement for young children who are experiencing grief from some form of loss. The experience of death needs an adequate explanation using correct terms and simply stated definitions. When vague terms are used, children become confused. When children are given the opportunity to ask questions and to express feelings of grief through physical and creative activities, they are able to develop healthy coping patterns that will continue through adulthood. When Someone Very Special Dies, Children Can Learn to Cope With Grief, written by Marge Heegaard, is a book intended to help children move through various levels of grief through the use of writing and drawing their own illustrations. This workbook's presentation is a valuable tool to be used by children through a confusing emotional time. Throughout the 32 pages of narrative prompts and partially drawn black and white illustrations, children are able to actively participate in a concrete and personally reflective experience. Children are encouraged to explore curiosities about death by asking questions, and they share personal understanding through the use of writing and creating their own illustrations. In response to grief, children may display a spectrum of emotions often acted out because they are unable to clearly express feelings verbally. Through the use of supportive prompts, children are coached in choosing ways to express anger or fear in a way that doesn't hurt other people or animals, or themselves. Children are encouraged to use suggestions on how to use physical movement and exercise to avoid the stuffing of feelings, which over time can cause severe physical ailments. In a classroom, grades kindergarten through 3, this book work well as a guide for designing a range of collaborative activities. For K-1 students, When Someone Very Special Dies, Children Can Learn to Cope With Grief can easily be used to introduce the concept that change is natural. The first four pages of the book consist of partially illustrated discussion prompts which students are invited to complete with their own illustrative ideas. These pages explore change in the life cycle of a butterfly, change in the seasons, and change in people as they age. The reader learns about the origin of feelings of grief, how living and growing things change, and how death is a natural part of this change. A group discussion following time to work in the book is important for children to be able to express their understanding behind their own illustrations. In a classroom of 2nd or 3rd graders, students work in pairs answering various provided prompts from pages 11-20. On these pages, students discuss curiosities they have about their own personal feelings and what influences them to change. They explore expressions of different feelings and where these feelings are located throughout the body, discovering alternative ways feelings can be expressed in a safe and healthy manner. Through this activity, students learn to feel comfortable to discuss an experience of painful emotion. In this way, students are able to identify the problems and pain of others by gaining insight into their own experiences. Following the discussion, each pair of students might create a poster reflecting the information they have collected about what they learned regarding various emotions and how they might be expressed in a safe and healthy manner. When Someone Very Special Dies, Children Can Learn to Cope With Grief would serve well as a personal journal for students in grades 4 through 6, rather than strictly as a whole group activity guide. Some portions could be referred to and used to guide whole class discussions or for non-stop writing prompts. Other portions of the book should be left for private reflection and entry due to its personal reference to religious content. I strongly recommend the book When Someone Very Special Dies, Children Can Learn to Cope With Grief for every classroom library. It provides a healthy message and positive means for helping children work through an experience with grief. Children need help to grieve and grow in healthy ways. Children must be allowed to get their sadness out by sharing feelings and memories with trusted listeners. This book provides children with a positive healing experience, and the ability to know that life can be okay again.