This book holds a special place in my heart. It was the book that helped convey my first meaningful lesson as a teacher.
During that time, I was in college but teaching at the preschool assistant level. The master teacher would often allow me to teach alone and incorporate my lesson plans. I was blessed with a whole team of educators that empowered and encouraged me.
AJ was one of my quiet students who would rather play by himself or read books. He was bright, observant and enormously imaginative. I had a strong connection to him.
One day after school, his mother approached me. She commented how AJ seemed aloof at home. She felt as if he lived in an imaginary world that caused him to show less affection now a days. She exclaimed, “He is just too busy for me. I have to beg for a kiss!” My first instinct was to ease her fears as a parent and reassure her that this was all part of normal development in children. I explained to her since AJ was in the preschool years, that meant using “imaginative play” as a learning tool to make sense of his world.
I reassured how AJ loved her immensely by pulling out his artwork. He was consistently drawing “mommy and me” pictures.
I went home that night mediating on an idea to tie in a book to somehow help AJ remember to show his mom more affection. Perhaps all of my little scientists would benefit from this idea.
The next day, I went to our local bookstore scouring the shelves. Suddenly like a diamond in the rough, my eyes caught a glimpse of Even Firefighters HUG Their Moms.
If you have a little one who is often too busy playing to give an occasional dose of affection, this is a great book to read together.
The story is about a little boy and his sister who pretend to be all kinds of heroes. All Mom wants is a hug, but they don’t take a break to give her one.
The end is my favorite part because Mom finally gets her hug!
This book reminds adults that a child’s job is to play, while encouraging children to to give love to their parents.
AJ’s mom approached me once again a few days after I read the book to the class. I will never forget her words. I become emotional just writing them.
AJ loves you and that book about the boy giving a hug! He will occasionally stop playing and ask if I need a hug. How I missed them! I wanted to thank you for all that you do.
There is no greater purpose in life than to help make a difference in this world.