Written by: Monique Gray Smith
Illustrated by: Danielle Daniel
For Ages: 3-6 years
Topics Covered: Social-Emotional Learning, Family, Kindness, Community.
Summary: This book uses the title phrase “you hold me up” to speak about kind acts loved ones do for one another. This book is great for young children to learn acts of kindness, and become introduced to what a caring community does for one another. These tender illustrations by Daniel accompany sweet words about the importance respect, listening, comforting, and laughing. The unique illustration style is simple and Daniel uses the cutest heart shapes for mouths, reinforcing the idea that love and holding others up can be done with kind words.
- How do your loved ones hold you up?
- How do you hold others up?
- What can we hold others up in our community every day?
Continuing the Conversation:
- Draw a picture of a time when someone held you up. What were they doing? How can we do that for others?
- Write a list as a class of ways to help and hold others up that you don’t see very often. No answer is too small!
- What are some community members that may need some extra support? Think about some ways you could hold them up, or some ways you could help that part of the community as a whole.
About the Author & the Illustrator:
Monique Gray Smith is a mixed heritage woman of Cree, Lakota, and Scottish descent and is the proud Mom of twelve year old twins. She is an award winning author, international speaker and sought after consultant. Her career has focused on fostering paradigm shifts that emphasize the strength and resiliency of the First Peoples in Canada. She is well known for her storytelling, spirit of generosity and focus on resilience.
Danielle Daniel was born and raised in a mining town where nickel is golden. She wishes she could live in the depths of the forest— Swiss Family Robinson style, but winterized. She is haunted by the stories of her ancestors; the ones that exist within her DNA. She was once an elementary school teacher but now she writes, paints and illustrates stories in her tiny studio. She wrote and illustrated a children’s book called: Sometimes I Feel Like a Fox (Groundwood Books), winner of the 2016 Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award (CCBC), finalist for the First Nation Communities Read Award, the 2017 Blue Spruce Award and one of NY Public Library’s Most Notable Titles in 2015. Her second children’s book, Once in a Blue Moonwas released fall 2017 (Groundwood Books). Her book, The Dependent– A Memoir of Marriage & the Military was published fall 2016, (Latitude 46 Publishing) shortlisted for the 2017 Louise de Kiriline Lawrence Award. She is currently working on two novels; one for adults and one for children. She has a B.A Arts, B.A.Ed, and she is currently an MFA candidate in creative writing at the University of British Columbia. She is Métis and she lives in Sudbury Ontario Canada, the traditional territory of the Atikameksheng Anishnaabeg, with her husband Steve, son Owen and their dogs Frodo and Suzie.