The Sound of Kindness
By Amy Ludwig Vanderwater, Illustrated by Teresa Martinez
To young children, values like kindness, empathy, or compassion can sometimes be beyond their perception.
The Sound of Kindness is a promisingly uplifting book, with succinct rhyming lyrics precisely focusing on the words that we choose to be kind to each other. It introduces the concept of a kindness walk, where a father and a son go for a walk in their neighborhood, focusing on sounds of kindness.
The book depicts the words, the deeds, and the choices that kind people make, which in turn creates a significant difference in someone else’s life. The book and its pleasant illustrations will harness the strength of kind words and actions and lay down the foundation for social emotional skills in children. The book also nurtures the importance of paying attention to and listening closely to the sounds and people around us.
The informative author’s note guides the readers about various possibilities of kindness walks like the quiet kindness walk, nature kindness walk, or the literary kindness walk. We recommend this book to parents and teachers to further instill kindness in our children, starting from a young age to help cultivate a kind community.
I received an ARC of this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
What a cute way to teach kids about the power of positive thinking and self-love. I'm already thinking about all the ways I can use this book in storytimes. It will be a great social and emotional learning tool. And there aren't a lot of good story time books out there about tacos, so super glad to add one to the list.
This was cute! The illustrations are so charming! I think kids would enjoy reading through this, and how it is ok and normal to be sad, but also better to be happy, and sometimes friends can bring a change of perspective.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance copy of this book provided by the publisher, American Psychological Association, via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own. From a child's perspective, they will understand that Taco gets sad and when he breaks, he feels bad. They will understand that his friends are trying to cheer him up and when Taco changes his thoughts, he feels better.
From a teacher's perspective, I am so excited to have a book that explains positive thinking in a way that makes sense for my littles. This book shows them that it's ok to have bad days. I also enjoy how it shows that even when people say bad things about you(the beans), you still need to say the good things about yourself.
This book is a great option for introducing coping methods to kids. I would recommend this book to parents looking for materials to help calm their children, as well as adults needing to calm themselves! It's a quick story with cute characters. My only critique would be that it would have been nice to see some of the examples mentioned in the back incorporated into the story instead of just "I carry the weight of the world."
Cute, simple. and sweet book! Although it is a food related book, the message behind the story is loud and clear. It's okay to fall apart sometimes, we all need breaks!
This bright, colorful picture book explores pyschological concepts through the lens of a taco who feels stressed and overwhelmed. Taco is afraid of falling apart and always wants to be perfect, and has to reframe his thoughts to accept imperfection. The idea is cute, but the story is abstract and will be somewhat confusing to many young children, especially since there are so many different foods interjecting in the dialogue at once.
The author's note provides an extensive explanation of basic CBT concepts for reframing thoughts, accepting imperfection, and pursuing a growth mindset instead of being self-critical and expecting failure. This can be helpful for parents, both for themselves and in raising their children, but this book mainly seems like a parenting tool, not a story that kids will necessarily understand or fully get the point of, even if they think the taco is funny.
Taco Falls Apart
By Brenda S. Miles
“Meet Taco. Everyone expects so much from him.” Who is everyone and what do they expect from him? The problem leading up to Taco cracking is pretty vague. Tacos friends respond in dramatic whispers to his breakdown but then are full of advice moments later. I think that Tacos friends had an opportunity to help kids understand how to be a friend to someone who is feeling down but failed in this story. Tacos self talk, however, sounds realistic to how it feels to fall apart. The advice, “Think-Feel-Do,” on the other hand came across as basic and idealistic. Thinking about what makes him feel terrific doesn’t solve any underlaying problems and is a superficial fix. Hugging it out is not a fix all either. I would have liked to see some real life solutions for coping when you feel down. This book was a pass for me.
Taco Falls Apart is a picture book I would recommend for children (or even adults!) above age 6 or so. It's about a Taco whose shell sometimes cracks, making him fall apart. He worries about if he can be a good taco, but his friends such as lettuce, onions, and nacho teach him that negative thoughts will only beget more negative thoughts and actions, while positive thoughts will create more positive thoughts and help Taco feel better. Overall, this is a great message, and there is a few pages of authors note on the end that expands on this type of thinking strategy.
I felt that the nacho character was a little harsh, especially the line, "You THINK you are terrible, so you FEEL terrible, and now you won't DO anything! And that's TERRIBLE!" No person should think that they are terrible for having bad days where they "don't do anything". If I was reading this to a child I would change the wording a little bit for that part.
Also, I would say that some older children or adults may get that idea of a taco being broken, then getting fixed somehow, doesn't make sense because it is a food and meant to be broken apart and be eaten. I feel that the author could have incorporated these properties as reasons that Taco is actually good at being a Taco. Tacos are meant to be a little messy and we love them for it.
I would still recommend this book to children and even adults who have issues with negative thought cycles.
We ALL could use this book right now. Think-feel-do is the mantra taco is taught by his friends when he struggles to keep it together. The story is funny, has cute illustrations, and teachers could easily have kids come up with other characters (toppings) that could extend the story. There are great back pages with information about how people think and ways to have less one-sided thinking. This story is relatable and a great lesson for kids and adults about how thoughts frame our thinking.
As a 3rd grade teacher, I am always on the lookout for books that bring a social/emotional learning aspect into our days. I shared Taco Falls Apart with my students and they really enjoyed it! They immediately agreed that they liked the illustrations...because we love tacos too! They also REALLY liked the part about the beans saying they make people fart, but are good for the heart. (I think they really just liked hearing their teacher say "fart!") It was a good book with a simple message...keep the negative thoughts at bay. If you have negative thoughts, you are probably going to have negative experiences. If you think happy thoughts, you are probably going to have positive experiences. It's all a frame of mind!
Thank you to NetGalley and Magination Press for the opportunity to read this book with my class!
Taco Falls Apart is the perfect read for Taco Tuesday! Or anytime, really. Taco Falls Apart is a wonderful unique addition to all of the new children's picture books popping up recently, that touch on mental health. If you are looking for a complimentary book to this one; Harold the Iceberg Melts Down by Lisa Wyzlic is also lovely.
Thank you to Netgalley and Magination Press for providing me with a review copy.
This was a great book about falling apart but still staying positive. I love the illustrations and I'll definitely be buying this book!
Fantastic book about recognising anxiety! I love the taco analogy. Taco has too many pressures and eventually he falls apart. The toppings help taco turn negative self talk to positive. I really would have liked to see more of a focus on unrealistic expectations and the fact that’s it’s ok not to cope and fall apart. I found the beginning and end of the book fantastic. The middle part when nacho comes in with the strategy feels forced and doesn’t flow.
Despite that this is an important book and would be an excellent addition to any classroom library. It is also a great provocation to spark further discussion about anxiety and stress.
Thank you to the author, publisher and Netgalley for this arc in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Really neat way to talk about mental health and unhealthy patterns without being too heavy for school-age, but not sure about audience here…
Taco feels like he can't hold everything together anymore and begins to fall apart.
I’ll definitely add this collection to our shelves.
I LOVED this book! Based on the common phrase “Tacos fall apart but we still love them,” this book explains to kids how pressure and anxiety can overwhelm a person (or taco, in this case) and gives actual strategies for how to manage these feelings. Taco is normally a happy go lucky guy, holding in all of his fillings and standing proudly, but some days, the pressure of life gets the best of him and he, quite literally, falls apart. With his toppings all spilled out he feels like a failure and talks negatively about himself to himself. That’s where his trusty toppings jump in and give him the strategy of “Think, Feel, Do” to cope with the hard day. When you think negative thoughts, you feel negative, and then you can’t possible do anything by productive. The toppings teach Taco to think positive thoughts which in term change the way he feels about himself and allows him to do what he wants or needs to do. The illustrations are engaging and the text is easy to understand yet impactful with bouts of humor added in. The back of the book offers additional explanations about coping strategies for pressure and anxiety.
When published, I am definitely adding this book to our library because everyone in my house (myself included) needs reminders of how to avoid negative self talk and thoughts.
Thank you to NetGalley and Magination Press for the advance electronic copy. All opinions in this review are my own.
It’s okay if you fall apart sometimes. Tacos fall apart and we still love them!
In the adorable story Taco Falls Apart by Brenda S. Miles exactly that happens: Taco falls apart and starts to crack under all of the pressure that is being put on him. His friends salt, onions, beans and many others are trying to cheer him up, but nothing seems to help until Nacho is giving him a stern (but loving) talking to. Will Taco learn to stand tall again and put himself together?
I loved this great and quick read suitable for all ages. Negative self talk sneaks up on everyone once in a while and by focusing on the things one can do, perspectives can change.
The illustrations were fun and vibrant and absolutely made me want to eat a taco or two.
Thanks to NetGalley and Magination Press for the advanced copy!
Even as adults, we just can't always keep it together. We shouldn't expect kids to be able to either. This brilliant story aims to help young readers understand how their thoughts and feelings impact their actions. When Taco starts to feel overwhelmed, he begins to crack. He loses the ability to believe in himself. With help from his friends, he realizes that he can change his way of thinking. Young children will be able to identify with Taco and understand that changing their thoughts, can really have a positive influence on the outcome. What an uplifting read aloud!
Oh my gosh, what a wonderful children’s book! Taco is having a DAY and just feels awful. His friends (and maybe I’m reading tooooo much into it, but also his insides) are telling him he’s great and if he thinks great thoughts, he will believe them! As a mother of 4 young kids, I can honestly say I’m buying this one!
A simple, sweet way to explain the power of thought and the way our brains can be rewired, even on a bad day. LOVE THIS ONE. the readers note at the end? Priceless.
Thank you, NetGalley. I so loved this one.
Taco Falls Apart is an uplifting story about the power of positive thoughts. The Taco is taught how to use affirmations by their friends. I enjoyed the message behind this adorable story.
Thank you to the author, the publisher, and NetGalley for an eARC in exchange for my honest review!