Written & Illustrated by: Lita Judge
For ages: 4-8 years
Topics Covered: Social-Emotional Learning, Fear, New Places, Anxiety, Growing Up, Mindfulness, Coping Strategies.
In this uncertain time, we know fear is at an all-time high for a lot of folks. We’ve been making an effort to share books that focus on social-emotional learning and development, and coping strategies for big feelings. When You Need Wings is all about a young girl starting a new school, and coping with her fear of being in a new environment. Scared on the playground after her dad leaves, our main character takes some deep breaths and remembers that she has wings and can fly away using her imagination to find solace.
Being able to take a moment to ground yourself when in a moment of fear, anxiety, or uncertainty is a very powerful way to remain calm. While starting a new school is the catalyst for this young girl to practice mindfulness strategies (and none of us are starting new schools anytime soon) this can be so helpful when getting overwhelmed about responsibilities at home, homeschooling, or the state of the world. We’re also in love with the illustrations!
This book was kindly sent to us for review by Simon & Schuster, but all opinions are our own.
About the Author & Illustrator:
Lita Judge has had a fascinating life! She was born in Alaska, interned as a paleontologist during the summer when she was a teenager, and has a myriad of critters in her home. Check out the about me section of her website, we were sucked in immediately. She’s been on so many adventures! Lita Judge is the author and illustrator of 24 fiction and nonfiction books including, Mary’s Monster, One Thousand Tracings, Born in the Wild, Red Sled, and Hoot and Peep. Her book, Flight School, has recently been adapted into an off-Broadway musical which is currently showing in New York City and China. Awards for her books include the International Reading Association Children’s Book Award, an ALA Notable, NCTE Notable Book, a Kirkus Best Book, and the Jane Addams Honor. Before she created art and books, Lita was a geologist and worked on dinosaur digs. But a trip to Venice Italy inspired her to quit her job and pursue a lifelong passion for creating art. Now, when not in her studio, she can be found backpacking through Europe with her sketchbook and easel in hand. Painting in the streets of Italy, France, Sweden, Russia and many other places have inspired her many of her books. The novel, Mary’s Monster, was inspired through reading Mary Shelley’s journals while exploring places she had traveled. This book created a rich opportunity to explore working in a completely new form, that of combining free verse with full page illustrations in novel form. Lita was drawn to capturing the interior world of Mary Shelley’s mind, as well as the realistic images of her life. Creating this book was a journey in itself and took five years to complete. Lita lives in New Hampshire.