Blue Sun (Series) – Homelessness, Grief, Separation {Review & Giveaway}

Last Monday, I shared with you my review of the possibly most philosophical book that has been added to my home library – How Long is Eternity?

The Blue Sun (Series) is another thought provoking read as it propels its (young) readers who are probably unaware and/or fortunately have never been exposed to such difficulties at a tender age to some harsh realities of life.

The books in this series address the issues of homelessness, grief and separation. Of all the three, my favourite is The Cardboard Man.

I was very attracted by the artistic portrayal of a little boy’s perception of a homeless man –

The pages with the boy inevitably are brightly coloured, juxtaposing with those darker, duller shades in the pages of the homeless man.

I also felt that the story is not just for the young readers to learn to offer aid in whatever small ways they can to others in need but also for the adults to remember that the change we want to see in our children starts with us. We are the role models for our children.

He’d not dared to go near the man at first but now his father had held his hand out to him. It is a symbolic gesture and marks the change in the way that the boy perceives the homeless man.

The Taste of Happiness is a story of a boy who wonders what happened to his mother’s smile and his journey to return that smile to his mother’s face.

The mother is obviously going through a rough patch (though it’s never mentioned explicitly) and the story is told from the little boy’s perspective. From the illustration of the petite frame of the little boy on the adult-sized chair, with his little feet dangling in the air, we feel how small the little boy feels in the mysterious adult world, where smiles disappear and the immense difficulty of his task to make his mum smile again.

Spoiler alert – he does manage to make his mum smile – but I’m not telling how. :D

The last book in this series reminded me of a recent post I read on Facebook where a preschool teacher shared that her student had told her joyfully that he has a special family because he has two mothers and two fathers.

Can it be possible that children from a broken marriage find closure and happiness in the new, reconstructed family unit? The story explores the emotional journey of a young child – from discovering that the family she once knew had fallen apart to finding her footing and place in her new family arrangement.

Whether or not children have yet been exposed to the heartaches we’ve experienced or observed in our lives, I feel that this is a series of books that addresses some very complex and possibly abstract issues and makes it easier for children to comprehend.

If you’re looking for something different for your children to read, you should really get this Blue Sun (Series) which is going at a discounted price of $20 now (usual price: $40)!

Wild Crane Press is kindly sponsoring ONE set of the Blue Sun (Series) to my readers.

As usual, to win a set of the books, follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter widget and be sure to keep a lookout for next week’s book giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Important note: Winners have to collect the prize from the Wild Crane Press office or simply authorise someone else to pick up the book. Call the office to arrange a timing that works for you (alternate Saturdays are available) or simply purchase a book from the Wild Crane Press website to get the books couriered over at no cost to you (P.S. from 15 January, there is a 50% storewide discount for the books on Wild Crane Press).

Wild Crane Press
33 Ubi Avenue 3
#06-37 Vertex Tower A
Singapore 408868

+65 6659 8839

The Blue Sun (Series) can be obtained directly from Wild Crane Press.

Unleash the bookaholic in you – from 15 January, there will also be a 50% storewide discount for the books on Wild Crane Press! For orders above SGD50, free delivery of the books will be included.

Look out for the last set of books kindly sponsored by Wild Crane Press next week!

Wild Crane Press
Address: 33 Ubi Avenue 3
#06-37 Vertex Tower A
Singapore 408868
Email: admin@wildcranepress.com

Disclosure: I was given a complimentary set of the books by Wild Crane Press. No monetary compensation was received. All opinions are mine.

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Posted in Books, Giveaways, Reviews | 10 Comments

The first email to her teacher

I promised I’d update her Primary 1 journey and even though at the time that I wrote my previous post of her transition to P1, I’d already written the email to her teacher, I thought I’d keep this as a separate post.

Two weeks into school and I already wrote my first email to the teacher. This certainly wasn’t something that I had expected.

 

And it wasn’t to ask about what to bring for school tomorrow or how she’s coping in class or to complain that I wasn’t allowed to accompany her into school in the first days.

Let’s just say I’m a generally easygoing person and having been a teacher, I normally let most things I don’t agree with slide because I know that some things the kid will adjust or figure out on her own. (I hear some of you screaming in horror, but yes, I’m just that kind of parent.)

But the one thing that really gets to me is when my girl comes home complaining about this one boy almost every day. And it’s the same boy that she said had taken her money on the first day of school (I shall comment more on this when I write about teaching about financial responsibilities).

And my chance to raise my concerns came when my girl came home in week 2 complaining that the boy had pushed her and she fell during PE lesson (and this wasn’t the first time I’d heard about pushing incidents). Fortunately, the PE teacher was aware of what happened so while the incident was fresh in everyone’s minds, I penned my first email to the form teacher.

I’d say I’m hardly the accusatory parent and since there wasn’t any blood shed and it was a mere bruise she suffered, the email was extremely cordial and I raised my concerns matter-of-factly as narrated to me and I also acknowledged that perhaps not every single thing she said is the truth per se as kids at her age may add in details unknowingly.

Surprisingly, I received a reply late that very night and was told that she’s already looking into many other issues with this boy – which shows that her teacher is alert and/or the boy is really attention-seeking.

I had asked for her position to be changed – away from this boy, as requested by my girl for the time being, but apparently, two weeks after my email, they are still in the same group.

I’d only say that I shall trust the teacher’s judgement that she thinks that my girl is able to conduct herself appropriately with respect to this boy’s attention-seeking acts.

From what I observed in these two weeks, my girl has indeed proven herself to be mature enough. She’d tell me that he said some nasty things to her and she’d feel sad but she’d either ignore him and surprisingly, she even told me, she forgave him for doing it on a few occasions. She said she’d give him a chance again, just as her teacher gives him another chance, time and again.

If anything, I think this incident has given me greater insight into how much kids look up to their role models and how sometimes by letting her solve her problems on her own, she’d learn to face the difficulties as opposed to me removing the problem in her life.

That said, I’m still glad I raised the issue with the teacher because I think it is still important to have it documented in emails – just in case the issue and tension escalate. Also, if I didn’t highlight the issue, I wouldn’t know that the teacher is already aware of the situation, and that she thinks there’s a better solution to the problem, other than for my girl to be displaced from it.

It’s almost one month of school already – let’s hope everything improves. :D

I shall share more in my next few posts relating to routines, food, and teaching her financial responsibilities once I get these sorted out with her and after we do our reflection of the month together.

This post is part of the P1 journey series –

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Posted in Parenting, Primary One, Primary School | 1 Comment