am I here?
Kelly, Matthew. (2009) Why am I
here? A story about becoming
the-best-version-of-yourself! ISBN: 10: 0984131809.
Litland.com recommends age 8 and under.
Max was a curious boy. He was curious about other
countries, he was curious about animals and nature, and
he was curious about life. One day while he is fishing
with his Grandpa, Max stumbles upon the ultimate
question, Why am I here? His Grandfather suggests that
Max is here to become the-best-version-of-himself! In
the days and weeks that follow, Max begins to notice
when he is and when he is not celebrating
the-best-version-of-himself. This single idea becomes
the touchstone for his decision-making, begins to guide
his words and actions, and fosters a remarkable
self-awareness. Why am I Here? Is a remarkable lesson
for children of all ages about living with passion and
Kelly is an internally renowned speaker and New York
Times bestselling author of more than a dozen books
including: The Rhythm of Life, The Seven Levels of
Intimacy, Building Better Families, and The Dream
do not review books for readers under age 9 because,
quite frankly, those stories should always portray the
virtues in action. And they don’t interpretation due to
simplicity. But once in a while, we are given a book
that’s a bit different from the norm and worth a look
Why am I
here? is a project supported in part by the Marge
and Charles J. Schott Foundation. It’s main character,
Max, is just old enough to begin wondering about his
role in the world around him. And his grandfather gives
him sage advice: to think about his choices every day,
and try to choose in ways that will help him be the best
Max he can be.
proceeds to show Max pondering these choices, typical
choices that a boy or girl will face such as healthy
eating, obeying his mum and getting on with his sister.
Sometimes he makes good choices and sometimes, the wrong
take-away from this story is that Max thinks about
how he feels when making these choices. He realizes
that good choices makes him feel good, and so these must
be the right choices to make. In the grown-up world, we
call this discernment! And the funny thing is,
when we start to openly help our child discern the small
stuff in his/her life, parents and teachers find
themselves better at discerning too :>)
overlook the value of an intergenerational story too.
Due to our nuclear-family society, kids grow up never
really knowing the elder generation. This story begins
showing how a child interacts with a grandparent, their
closeness sufficient for the boy to ask him these
questions; the role the grandparent plays in “being
there” for the child to give guidance and wisdom.
specialists, child psychologists and
classroom/homeschool teachers for grades Preschool
through 2nd grade will find this book useful.
Due to the nature of the story and length of sentences
with word complexity, it is better used as a book shared
with an adult rather than one handed to a child to read
on their own. The value to the book is as a discussion
tool, not to put the child to sleep at night or keep
them quiet during naptime in the afternoon.
A book such as
this can be your “starter” to initiating a classroom
culture of good character. Reading aloud to the
class, you can then reinforce the idea of continual
discernment as you work with the children during the
day. This then is quite useful if drawing upon other
character education curriculum in your classroom.
reason, librarians are also encouraged to add this to
their collection as an important piece that needs to be
available to the general public.
For all these
uses and more, Litland.com recommends Why am I here?
So what do
YOU think? Read our comments on the
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tell us yours!