Friday, May 31, 2019

I’M WORRIED by Michael Ian Black & Debbie Ridpath Ohi – The story of a girl, a flamingo and a very worried potato


I am thrilled to be featuring this picture book on my blog today. It’s the third in a series of books about emotions (the other two are I’M BORED and I’M SAD, see my review here). Thanks so much to Simon & Schuster Canada for sending me this copy for review!  


 Summary from the publisher:


Potato is worried. About everything.

Because anything might happen.

When he tells his friends, he expects them to comfort him by saying that everything will be okay. Except they don’t. Because it might not be, and that’s okay too. Still, there’s one thing they can promise for sure: no matter what happens…they will always be by his side.



I’m Worried, written by Michael Ian Black and illustrated by Debbie Ridpath Ohi, was published in 2019 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.


Opening:     

I’m worried.

What are you worried about?

The future.


My Thoughts as a Writer:

I love the characters and how their worries suit their personalities. This is a great book to search out when you’re looking for creating a story with multiple characters and wondering how to create different personalities in the same story. 

Even though the topic of emotions and anxiety could be presented in a heavy, serious way, the gentle humor and bold and fun illustrations give this story a lighter tone that will really connect with young children.  


My Thoughts as an Educator:

I’m so happy to have this whole series of books for helping my kindergarten students talk about emotions. They love the quirky characters and they can really relate to these books. (My classroom copy of I’m Bored is in tatters because it is so well-loved.)

In I’m Worried, I especially love how the friends listen to each other, compare their stories and accept each other’s feelings. I often tell my students, “It’s okay to feel worried” or “It’s okay to feel sad.” This book is a must for a classroom collection! I would love to pair this book with Scaredy Squirrel by Melanie Watt, a character who also has a lot of worries.

Ages: 3-7

Grades: PreK – 2

Themes: anxiety, feelings, friendship

Activities:

Draw & Write: Think of a time when you felt worried. Draw and write about what happened. 

STEM: Provide a real potato for students to feel and explore. Can you build a “safe place” or “hideout” for the potato?

STEAM: Provide bubble wrap and art materials. What can you make with bubble wrap?

Make a list: What are some things you can do when you feel worried?

5 comments:

  1. I just love the Potato character in these books. And I am sending Debbie Ohi healing vibes as she recently injured her foot and has had to delay the book tour. Can't wait to read this one.

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  2. Hmmm. I didn't know about this series. I'll have to check it out. Thanks for sharing! :)

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  3. This looks like a great book to pair with the older, Wemberly Worried. I identify with that book even as an adult. Thanks for featuring this one. I like the idea that you don't have to say "everything will be OK." You just have to stick with each other through the worry.

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  4. What a great group of stories. Love the series and the pairings that you suggested. Debbie Ohi is amazing. Thanks for reminding me of these books.

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  5. Oh fun! another one! I think I'll enjoy worrying with potato.

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