Tiger Days helps kids understand their emotions, and how to describe their feelings, by using animals to illustrate them. Ever feel like a rhino? So stubborn, no one can move you or change your mind? How about a silly monkey, all wiggly arms and legs, full of mischief and fun? Each spread is vividly colored, featuring a different animal, and characteristics of that animal that map to different moods. The background color of each page adds to the feel of each feeling; bright greens and yellows for happy rabbits and monkeys, who play across the pages; soft purple for a shy turtle; red for an angry bull. Each drawing is boldly lined and bright, popping off the page; fonts are capitalized to emphasize key words.
Tiger Days also lets kids know that their feelings are normal. No feelings are presented as “good” or “bad”; they just are, and this is how they can make people feel. I’d easily add this to one of my storytimes, including a yoga storytime, where I use animal poses. The kids’ favorite one tends to be the Lion Pose, where they get to open their mouths wide and roar. Linking feelings to mindfulness is a great way to help kids understand their feelings and be present for them, allowing them to describe and name what’s going on and furthering communication. Encourage your storytime kids roar, stamp the ground, or curl into their shells to describe different feelings! This would made a good time to break out some emoji flash cards, too; let the kids color the different faces and match them to animals mentioned in the book.
Tiger Days is a good book to have in your bookshelf, especially when you’re working with kids who are learning not only how to communicate with you, but to put words to things happening within themselves.