EMOTIONS in Motion is the first in a series of three thoughtful books by Rose Stanley, and beautifully illustrated by Lisa Allen, which focus on emotional literacy, by helping children to identify and deal with their emotions.
Emotions in Motion explores the spectrum of emotions through words and illustrations, encouraging children to identify their own emotions, and express them.
My five-year-old son has been carrying this book around like a treasure, insisting on photocopying certain pages to distribute to friends, and to discuss.
The reader is asked to ascribe a colour to a collection of emotions, which also have a face attached to show how those feelings might be expressed.
As we read along, my son asks to see my angry/disappointed/happy/love face, and he attempts to make those faces, too. It has been a great way into conversations about what makes us feel different things, what that looks like (although he took the idea of steam coming out of an angry person's ears a bit too literally and was disappointed when there was none coming out of mine when I put on my angry face. I have saved the "what's a metaphor" discussion for another day).
In the second book in the series, Tilly's Big Problem, Tilly has a problem which she confides in her friend Ned. He is "usually good with the tricky stuff", but this time, even Ned can't come up with a solution.
However, he does have a great idea to help her find someone to talk to. Together they devise a plan to find the right grown-up to share her secret, and have an adventure along the way.
The third title is A Hot Cup of Chocolate in which a little boy named Johan thinks most problems can be solved by having a "magical" cup of hot chocolate.
He has a happy home, which he shares with Mum, Dad and his little sister Lani. But Johan's friend Henry has a lot going on in his life and Johan finds out that being a supportive friend requires a little bit more than even lots of cups of hot chocolate.
Each of the three books has an interactive section at the back with questions, ideas, and prompts that can be used to stimulate longer conversations with children about their emotions, feelings and experiences.
Emotions in Motion, Tilly’s Big Problem and A Hot Cup of Chocolate Rose Stanley, Illustrated by Lisa Allen Starfish Bay Children’s Books, $14.99 each.