My eldest daughter is a sensitive soul. A petite who worries about what others think and sometimes struggles with being shy, not all of the time, but there are times where she’s worried that others are laughing at her and not with her. Sometimes that worry stifles her confidence. I am sure most of you can relate to this in some way. There are lots of sensitive souls walking among us. As a mom, teacher and book lover I look for books that resonate, that are important and have the potential to impact my girls.
Recently we borrowed Frances Dean Who Loved to Dance and Dance by Birgitta Sif from the library this book does all of these things. This is the story of Frances Dean a petite who loves to dance, she is moved by the wind and the birds signing in the trees, she loves to dance – it is her passion. The only problem is that she is unsure of dancing when others may be watching. She is worried that they will see her. This is something that I could relate to immediately, my darling daughter does the same thing, and that is when my heart skipped a beat, Frances Dean is like so many little girls and boys, who have hidden talents that they are apprehensive to share.
Frances Dean goes from smiling and dancing everywhere she goes to being incredibly sad, she forgets how to dance, she even slumps down on her park bench, which worries her bird friends who she always danced freely with. The birds in this story show Frances Dean another little girl who can sing and sings even when people might be watching, Frances Dean wonders if she will be able to be like the little girl and share her talent without worry. She builds her own confidence and when she feels comfortable and is ready, then she begins to share her talent and passion with those around her. What she discovers is that people love her dancing and that they even want her to teach them her moves.
One thing that I love is that her parents aren’t featured in the problem solving. Frances Dean works to build her confidence and does it herself. I think that this is the first story I have read where the petite is empowered on her own.
This book is beautifully written, even the inscription by Ms. Sif is sincere and completely touching.
To all those who live with all their heart
This book is absolutely perfect in every way. As a teacher I have taught many students who were sensitive souls just like Frances Dean, this book is so much more than a picture book about a little girl, it is inspiring, confidence building and empowering. This book should be in all classrooms and school libraries.