Down By the Cool of the Pool, by Tony Milton, tells the story of a frog who dances beside a pool. One by one, other animals some to see him dance. They can dance, too, but not like him, so they show him their moves. Before long, a whole multitude of animals is dancing around the pool, right up until the moment they all fall into the cool pool! That doesn't stop them, though, they just dance in the pool until their dance is done. Then, as the sun goes down, one by one, they go home.
Down By the Cool of the Pool is a beautifully illustrated book that preschoolers through first graders would love. There is rhyming, repetition, and onomatopoeia. It would be a great variant for a brain break: while the teacher reads, the students can act out the actions of the animals. The need to repeat the actions means the students must pay close attention to the story and remember the sequence. While students who are older might not think the story line is particularly interesting, they would surely enjoy the out of seat activity as well.
This is a great book for a brain break. This book can show your students how everyone can be different and creative in their own way. This book could be used kindergarten through 5 th grade. For follow up on this book I would hand a sheet of paper to each student. They will all have the same shape on their paper. I would then tell them to draw a picture using that shape. After they finish I will ask some of them to share and explain their drawing and relate it back to how we all have a sense of creativity and we should embrace it. This gives students a chance to express themselves and have a little brain break.
This was a challenge from work and it is very outside my comfort zone. The first half of the entire book was very clinical for me and hard to read. I got what O'Connor was trying to say when he used stories to illustrate situations. The second half moved faster and gave ideas and practices that could be used for many different habits anyone would like to overcome.
Author Richard O’Connor just combined two of my favorite books: Daniel Hahneman’s THINKING, FAST AND SLOW and Eckhart Tolle’s THE POWER OF NOW. Not only did he combine them, he did it quite well, making it his own. This was an enjoyable, insightful read that I highly recommend.
Ouch!” That’s the first thing you’ll say. O’Connor lists out the bad habits—one by one. At first, you may not think you are that bad off. Then you flip the page. And another page. He’s got your number. Several of your numbers. Then O’Connor goes into detail of how we minimalize our bad habits, thinking they aren’t that destructive, and then he systematically proves how they are bad. Yeah, “ouch!”
But read on, fellow readers! You wouldn’t be looking at this book if you didn’t want to change. O’Connor doesn’t leave you in the heaps of disappointment; he shows various methods to change. He gives the scientific background of what works and doesn’t work, and then offers exercises to change. My favorite, as alluded to before, is mindfulness techniques and awareness. But this isn’t all breathing and meditating. O’Connor offers plenty of techniques for the “I don’t want this ‘ah-om’ stuff” folks (though the ‘ah-om’ stuff works—trust me…and trust O’Connor). He talks about journaling, and many other hearty techniques that are easy to implement and rid those nasty ol’ habits.
Bottom line: we all do things that we want to change or eliminate. O’Connor blends the best of what is out there and makes it practical, real, and obtainable. This is a great book that’ll give you a better life.
Thanks to Hudson Street Press and Penguin Group for providing this to me electronically for review.