Mindful Moments at Bedtime
Written by Paloma Rossa
Illustrated by Stephanie Fizer Coleman
24 pages • Published 2019 (Cottage Door Press)
Recommended Age Range: Preschool through 2nd grade.
Publisher's Summary: This beautiful book is full of ways to take just a Moment or two to wind down and think about the day that was - and the day that will dawn tomorrow… Inside this peaceful bedtime book are 12 Mindful Moments to share in a quiet and thoughtful way, before sailing away on the dreamship.
Dr. Annie's Takeaways
Recommended for: This book is a lovely collection of peaceful mindfulness exercises for a child to practice with an adult before bed, or really anytime they could use a relaxing reset. A child who often has a lot of racing thoughts or worries when they’re going to bed might particularly benefit from some of the exercises in this book. Therapists and child care providers interested in incorporating mindfulness exercises into their work with children might enjoy using this book during the day, as well. All but the last prompt on dreams are applicable to the daytime as well as bedtime.
Would a child like it? I can definitely see a child having fun picking out their activity for the night.
Evidence-Based Practices: Mindfulness, Diaphragmatic Breathing
Tone: Relaxing, peaceful
Story Quality: This book is a collection of 12 prompts that encourage reflection and relaxation. It is not intended to be read through cover-to-cover in one sitting. The different prompts are fairly simple, but there’s something for everyone in this book. There are some “inspirational quotes” interspersed through the book (e.g., “Mistakes are proof that you are trying”) that are a bit cheesy and random.
Illustrations: Really beautiful illustrations with rich texture and color. There are a lot of tactile prompts in the book (e.g., “Say something you are thankful for while you press one of the wildflowers”), and the illustrations almost look like you could feel them. This book is large (a bit larger than a standard picture book), but the pages are thick like a board book which gives it a special, hefty feel and will help the pages hold up to all of the page-touching this book encourages.
Representation: There aren’t any characters in this book. A lot of the prompts reference nature (e.g., the ocean, a forest, a stream).
Psychological Practices: There are a few different categories of mindfulness exercises in this book. They can all be helpful for a child who is unwinding from the day. There are prompts that help a child to relax their body (i.e., through deep breathing, blowing on paper lanterns, and an adorable body scan of saying goodnight to their body parts), visualization exercises that encourage children to imagine a relaxing scene using their five senses (e.g., “You are a sea turtle on the beach. How does the cool ocean breeze feel on your face? How does the sand feel under your feet?”), prompts to help children connect with feelings of love and gratitude, prompts for reflecting on today and tomorrow (e.g., “Touch a high point on one of the mountains and talk about the best part of your day. Then touch a low point on one of the mountains and talk about the hardest part of your day”), and a prompt for inspiring sweet dreams (“The Dreamship is here to take you away to Dreamland. Tell the ship what you would like to do and see in your dream tonight”).
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