“The Catcher Dream” was born as a poem and remains so in this newly minted Book Five of Kelly Anne Manuel’s Childhood Classics. In this story the Child is invited on a journey where self empowerment is modeled through an interaction between the narrator and a fictionalized character known as the Catcher Dream. This is a story where the narrator models strength and courage once an uncomfortable matter is identified through self assessment.
“The Catcher Dream” offers a standing invitation to the Child. The Child will learn that they are individuals in charge of safeguarding their physical and emotional space. It is an example of how imperative it is to process the thoughts, feelings, and emotions that uncomfortable matters provoke.
The simple words take on new meaning as the illustrations pair perfectly with their presentation. The Child will observe illustrations that are in alignment with the serious tone of the story. It is important that the art match the conflict presented and resolved by the narrator. The narrator shows the Child that once a boundary was encroached upon, speaking up in a firm manner provided a solution.
Children learn how to handle conflict by observation. It is important for their literature to address a balanced yet firm approach to conflict resolution. The author intends this book to be a launch pad for discussions about personal space, respect, and boundaries. These are all areas that deserve to be explored frequently as the Child ages.
It is in Early Childhood that futures are being constructed. “The Catcher Dream” is a tool in a Caregiver’s toolbox to assist with that healthy formation. The idea that self empowerment is formed during these early years is embraced by the author. The Children who read this book will be rewarded with a valuable lesson that facing fears results in the positive trait of resilience.
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