Sometimes I Feel Angry / Sometimes I Feel Nervous / Sometimes I Feel Jealous / Sometimes I Feel Lonely / Sometimes I Feel Sad Illus. A. Sandland.
The Nunavummi Reading Series from Inhabit Education situates emotional literacy learning in the Canadian Arctic. These books are part of a leveled reading series and are graded at Fountas & Pinnell Text Level J (books designed to be read aloud to young children). Amanda Sandland’s illustrations are spare and uncluttered. Backgrounds are plain or contain simple landscapes. The characters developed by Ali Hinch are anthropomorphized animals representing small children. The nervous caribou has a hat and satchel and Aqi, the sometimes sad and lonely bird, has boots. Some of the characters appear in several books.
One of the most helpful things about these books is that the resolutions are realistic. The characters display real emotions and reactions. These situations are resolved through talking with friends and recognizing which responses are healthy and which are not. There are none of the trite “quick-fixes” that so often appear in children’s books related to emotions.
There are many children’s series that address emotions, but because these books are set in the Arctic and use Arctic animals, children in the North will be more comfortable with the content. The characters do things that Northern children would do: playing one-foot high kick, looking for fossils, picking berries, ice-fishing and going sliding. Children who do not live in Northern environments will be able to learn more about the North, as well as about emotions. This is a high-quality, relatively inexpensive series that is highly recommended for elementary school libraries and public libraries.
Highly recommended: 4 out of 4 stars
Reviewer: Sandy Campbell
Sandy is a Health Sciences Librarian at the University of Alberta, who has written hundreds of book reviews across many disciplines. Sandy thinks that sharing books with children is one of the greatest gifts anyone can give.
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