Reviews /

The Best Me!

Authored by Marvyn Harrison
Illustrated by Rochelle Falconer
Published by Pan Macmillan

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The Best Me! is an empowering book for young children which shows them how to keep themselves healthy and happy.

‘Every morning, when we wake up, we try to be our best selves,’ say the confident brother and sister at the start of this book. They show us how they do this across the day. Each lively double-page spread begins with an affirmation, some examples of how they live it and a useful question. These self-care statements cover hygiene, ‘I can keep clean!’, physical health, ‘I can eat healthily!’ and mental well-being, ‘I can talk about my feelings!’. In the back of the book there are notes for parents and carers in which author Marvyn Harrison explains his aims and gives advice on how to use the book to encourage healthy habits and a positive attitude.

As parents, carers and educators we all want our children to be healthy, confident and independent. Reading this book would be a great way of showing them what they can do to achieve that themselves. Each page presents opportunities to talk about their daily activities, their emotions and develop a vocabulary around self-care. The situations are relevant to children’s lives and the questions really invite the reader to realise that this is about them.  Rochelle Falconer’s illustrations are full of energy and the book’s bright colours and charming, friendly characters will definitely catch children’s attention.

The Best Me! would be a popular choice in an Early Years or Year 1 class for independent reading in a reading corner. It also has a lot of potential for use by educators as part of PHSE/Circle Time, as a stimulus for an All About Me-style project, as it covers many of the key ideas in a Health and Well-being curriculum: physical and mental health, being assertive and kind, talking about feelings and expressing identity.

Wouldn’t it be great if there were a book for adults which made self-care seem such fun?