I love reading dedications in books…dedications children write are especially write, but I am always curious when the President of the United States writes a dedication to his first picture book, of THEE I SING. He writes,
” To Michelle– whose fierce love and daily good sense have nourished such wonderful daughters. – B.O. “
I absolutely love this picture book penned by Barack Obama, illustrated by Loren Long. The first page pictures his lovely daughters passionately marching into the pages of the book followed by their pup. I love the visual picture his words paint.
“Have I told you lately how wonderful you are?
How the sound of your feet
running from afar
brings dancing rhythms to my day?
How you laugh
and sunshine spills into the room?
The President of the United States then launches into his repeated refrain ,
“Have I told you that you are creative?”
On every page spread a new virtue and a new American is highlighted. My personal favorite is the late Helen Keller.
“Have I told you that you are strong?
A woman named Helen Keller fought her way through long silent darkness.
Though she could not see or hear,
she taught us to look at and listen to each other.
Never waiting for life to get easier,
she gave others courage to face their challenges.
This non-fiction picture books is perfect for launching a reading and writing unit on biographies. Of course, keeping with the format of the new ‘non-fiction’ with voice, this book of mini-biographies has more information at the end of the book on each person mentioned in the book. It is a fantastic mentor text to use with children, the use of a repeated question. He also sprinkles metaphors , similes and alliteration throughout the informative text!
Yesterday, I was angered yet again, as I was sitting at the stop light in our town. A man by the road was holding up a picture of our president. He had drawn in a moustache on our president to give the appearance of Hitler. The poster said, “Obama is a prick”. Again, I was sickened as well as saddened. I looked at the man who had evil in his eyes. He smiled at me, hoping for a supporter. I just shook my head at him and sighed. I wanted to shout at him, to scream expletives in his face, but somehow I knew that my President, who wrote this beautiful book, and dedicated this book to his wife, would also just shake his head and march forward, like he is teaching his own children and the other children of the world through this book. Regardless of your politics, I know you would do the same, my friends. xo nanc