With the Summer holidays approaching (yes I know it’s only week two of Term Four, but we all know that Term Four is a blur), it’s time to turn our minds to ‘Summer Reads’ and activity books. Holidays in our house are lots of art and craft, days of gardening, playing with neighbours and swimming…but I always like to get a few ‘activity’ books or journals for downtime in the afternoons (ha! who am I kidding) and this is the time of year that new options start to appear on the market.
I’ve seen ‘How to Feel Awesome Every Day’ by Elly Awesome (illustrated by Astrid Hicks) everywhere and I will admit I was cautious because I had no idea who Elly Awesome was and I’m fussy with journaling books which I give to tweens and teens…they deserve the very best, not something slapped together for Christmas sales.
No need to fear! ‘How to Feel Awesome Every Day’ has been produced with careful attention to quality design and author Elly Awesome is not only a fantastic role model for tweens and teens, she also has the lingo and celebrity factor to appeal to the target audience. My Year Six students at school were suitably impressed with the book, which was the final tick of approval for me and it’s now my ‘Must Buy’ recommendation for tweens and teens. It depends on the maturity of your child, but I’m recommending the book from 9 +; there is some talk of social media, and my children WILL NOT have their own social media until they are 13 (!), but just about every small person I know is aware of Instagram and understands hashtags better than most adults. You can find Elly Awesome is a presenter on ‘Toasted TV’, and you can find her on Facebook, Instagram and on her YouTube channel here. I’ve no idea who I missed her actually.
Right from the introduction of the book, Elly is at pains to say that life isn’t always easy and we all have our own personal struggles; this is no ‘your life can be totes awesome if you do A, B and C book’…thank goodness. Her goal is to help young people feel as awesome as can be by offering age appropriate advice, pages to do some guided journaling, DIY’s, activities and quotable quotes. I particularly like that she takes a bit of a growth mindset approach, with lines like, “I think challenging yourself is pretty awesome, it’s a great way to build confidence and grow. Totally surprise yourself with what you can accomplish when you put your mind to it”. She also advocates for flipping mindsets from what we have to do (and creating ‘To Do’ lists) to thinking about things we have to stop doing and creating ‘Un Do’ lists. Mindfulness practice is also touched upon with the beautiful double page spread about laying down on a blanket and watching the clouds go by…with just one rule – no phones!
There are some excellent DIY pages and recipes include: Overnight Oats; Awesome Energy Bites; Mega Awesome Choc Chip Mug Cake and Funky Fruit Pops…all of which could be made with little to no assisstance which is a win!
The Summer Bucket List page is full of fun suggestions like having breakfast for dinner, making your own slop and slide, watching the sunrise, planting a tree or reading a new book (yay!). As well as relaxing, there is some tough love peppered throughout the book, like tips to stop procrastinating and an *important life skills alert* about being awesome with money and how you be a super saver. There are tips for success at school and information about why volunteering is cool and why kindness rocks.
I feel like Elly Awesome has covered all bases with this book and covered them with style, funk and love. There is a very good reason I keep seeing this book everywhere; it really is awesome and shines brightly in an overcrowded ‘self-help’ book market.
PudStar (9) is getting this book for the Summer holidays and I’ve been pondering ways to keep her engaged with the content. Sometimes I find she will work through an activity book for a while and then lose interest, or she will do the ‘fun parts’ and leave the ‘tough love’ for another time (that time is never). This is a personal book to work through and needs to be fun, not a lesson or ‘homework’*. I really want to motivate her to do this herself and to feel awesome about herself while she does it; if I wave the big stick and insist she sits down and does it, it isn’t going to happen, isn’t going to be meaningful and isn’t in the spirit of the book. So I’m going to try the following: some new gel pens to fill out the book with, a cute bag to keep her book in, stickers for her to place on each page as she finishes it (because every kid wants to be a teacher and hand out stickers at some point!), and the promise that I will let her cook each and every recipe and take her to the store to buy the ingredients in a timely fashion!
I have SIX very AWESOME ‘Elly Awesome’ packs for six very AWESOME Children’s Books Daily readers, thanks to Penguin Random House.
Six lucky winners will receive: 1 watermelon beach towel; 1 treat-themed pencil case; 1 set of four treat-themed erasers; 1 set icy pole molds; 1 signed copy of the book; 1 set of four Elly Awesome badges; 1 postcard ‘How to Feel Awesome Every Day’.
To enter…comment below with your top tip for tweens and teens about how to feel awesome and ensure you are a Children’s Books Daily email subscriber. ENTRIES CLOSE 9am THURSDAY 19th October.
Terms and Conditions
Entry is open to residents of Australia only, and persons entering must be over 18 years of age.
Entry is a game of skill and chance plays no part in determining a winner.
Winners will be chosen by CBD editors from all eligible entries received.
Judges decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
Winners will be contacted via email so make sure yours is correct when you comment.
If a winner is unable to be contacted or does not claim their Prize within 14 days the prize will be forfeited.
In the event of forfeiture a further draw will be conducted within 14 days and a new winner will be selected.
The Prize will be sent to the winner’s address.
Prizes are not transferable or redeemable for cash.
*If there was a postal vote in Australia to decide if we should ban homework in primary schools, I would be voting YES! Is there any other way to vote? 🙂
Support one of favourite local (and online) bookstores in Brisbane, ‘Where the Wild Things Are’/’Avid Reader’ by purchasing through the link below – they have plenty of signed Elly Awesome books at the moment if you place an order quickly. If you are local to Brisbane you can order online and pick up in-store.Booktopia. You can also compare prices on Fishpond and Bookworld for Australian purchases.If you live in the US or would prefer to use Amazon click here. If you live in the UK or would prefer to use Book Depository click here. Purchases clicked through from the Children’s Books Daily site result in a small commission. Commission is used in part to maintain Children’s Books Daily and to support community groups which connect children with books.