Educational book review: Learning about Annie Fox and the adventures of Raymond and Sheila
Independence of young children is not described in a manual. And, definitely, there are no specific rules. Parents and educators are puzzled how to educate children and show them how to express their feelings. And sometimes it’s not easy.
Expression of feelings for some children is a new adventure. Many young children can easily express happiness and enthusiasm. Yet, there are some who attempt to refrain from being angry or upset. But how can parents and educators teach children to control their feelings?
Books are excellent ways to show children how to express their emotions. Author Annie Fox in her Spanish translated books of the adventures of Raymond and Sheila delightfully tells how children can express different emotions in various ways. The stories of Fox are wonderful addition to any parent’s home library.
Readers can get a chance to win 3 digital copies of ¿Eres Mi Amigo? and 3 digital copies of ¿Estamos Perdidos? in English or Spanish. These digital copies are great for your Kindle, tablet, computer, or cellular phone. Simply follow the giveaway rules. Anyone can be winner.
Giveaway rules: (Ends 02/26/2013)
- Fill out the form below. Winner will be contacted via email. (1 point)
- Leave a meaningful comment (1 point)
- Like Spanish4Kiddos Facebook page (1 point)
- Visit Raymond and Sheila website (1 point)
- Subscribe to Spanish4Kiddos newsletter (1 point)
Winner will be determined with most points and will be announced in Spanish4Kiddos newsletter. Good luck!
Enjoy the following interview with Annie Fox to learn more about the author and her inspiration for the wonderful stories.
1. The adventures of Raymond and Sheila are wonderful and entertaining to read. What was your inspiration for all your characters?
My own kids were the original ‘Raymond and Sheila’ (not their real names!) Unfortunately, we don’t see many loving sibling relationships among kids. Just the opposite! But my daughter and son had a very special bond, growing up. They’re adults now and they are still such close friends! I wanted to celebrate that and inspire kids to get along better with their siblings.
2. Raymond and Sheila are kids with so much in common to other children between the ages of 5 and 8. Why are they represented as animals?
So I wouldn’t have to worry about any child, of any ethnicity, feeling ‘left out’ because the characters didn’t ‘look like them.’ Raymond and Sheila obviously do not look like anyone who would be reading these stories. And yet, they are so very human in their responses to what goes on around them. It’s easy for the reader to forget that they are alligators. Instead, they will think, ‘That’s just like me!’
3. Many children may feel embarrassed about having an imaginary friend. How does Raymond help other children trying to overcome these life skills?
Snowball is such a great friend… so supportive, affectionate, encouraging. Many children have an imaginary friend or a stuffed animal/doll that they relate to, ‘as a friend’. Raymond is never embarrassed about Snowball! And he helps children who read the book understand that friendship is something we all need to learn about, so we can become good friends to others. Raymond shows us that we can learn about friendship from many different sources.
4. Independence is so important for young children. Older siblings or family members help them recognize the importance of being safe at all times. Do you have any suggestions for parents, big brothers or sisters?
Learning to become more independent is a process. Parents and big brothers or sisters can help the younger ones in the family by giving them opportunities… little by little, to make their own decisions while learning how to stay safe. As a little sister myself (with 2 older brothers) I know it’s sometimes easy to treat a younger sibling like a baby. Not fair and not helpful! Help younger ones master age-appropriate life skills and the whole family benefits.
5. Shelia is so worried about her brother. It seems anxiety on the rise for young children than before. Can you recommend ways to cope with distress for young kids?
I often teach children (and parents) to take slow deep breaths whenever they are feeling nervous or anxious. Sheila is worried when she can’t find Raymond, but what I admire about her, is that she doesn’t just sit there and worry. She goes out looking for him! That’s a great lesson. Don’t let your worrying thoughts drag you down. If you’ve got a problem, do something about it! It will help you feel more in control and you might even get an award for being The World’s Best Sister/Brother!
About the author:
Annie Fox, M.Ed., has been teaching and creating innovative content for kids for 30+ years. Check out Annie’s latest book, Teaching Kids To Be Good People: Progressive Parenting for the 21st Century (Electric Eggplant). Parents and educators can contact Annie at AnnieFox.com.