Kindness In A Scary World

A Children’s Book About Terrorism

Children - Social Issues
50 Pages
Reviewed on 01/15/2018
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

I am passionate about helping people who have survived difficult experiences live vibrant and fulfilling lives and about helping people understand their humanity. My quest to understand the human brain and mind has led to more understanding and compassion for myself and others.

I spend most of my days providing therapy services to children and adults who are growing and triumphing over extraordinarily hard times. Some of the therapy work I do is co-facilitated with horse and human therapy partners. I love the texture and depth that working with horses provides and I am constantly amazed at their ability to get to the heart of the matter so quickly.

I enjoy writing stories for children that help children heal, grow and learn about themselves and the world around them. Stories are such a beautiful, non-threatening way to provide information and to engage children in conversation. I hope that my stories reflect the beauty of repair in relationships, the truth of pain, and the ability of the spirit to soar, while providing children and adults with the opportunity to talk about difficult but important subjects.

Kindness In A Scary World was created to help parents talk to their children about the scary images children see on the TV and internet. It was important to me that the book be truthful about scary images but not gory or dramatic. It was also important that it be hopeful and discuss ways everyone can help our world be a better place.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite

Kindness In A Scary World: A Children’s Book About Terrorism is a social issues picture book for children and their parents written by Rebecca J. Hubbard and illustrated by Becca Johnson. The author provides an introduction for parents to read before sharing the story with their children, as well as a guide that includes sections on how to discuss terrorist attacks; field questions about death and dying; and respond to a child’s questions about these issues. There’s also a comprehensive list of stress reactions to watch for in a child’s behavior and a list of resources for parents and children for dealing with trauma-related stress.

The story is about a little boy whose playtime with his cat, Taz, is abruptly shattered when he hears his parents screaming and shouting. When he runs downstairs, he sees them standing motionless before the television. Their faces show terror and sadness, and it feels to him like they’re in a scary movie. When he looks at the television screen, he sees blood, and people lying wounded, and others running in fear and panic. His parents’ reaction makes him realize that this is not a movie -- it’s real life, and those people are hurt. Why? What happened? His parents try to answer his question why terrorists do the things they do, and they explain how no one can really understand why they think terror will fix their problems. The little boy wants to know what he can do, and his parents explain that every good thing he does, every helpful action, helps to heal the world and make things better. It is the most each of us can do, and even the smallest thing has far-reaching results.

Rebecca J. Hubbard’s social issues picture book and guide for children and their parents, Kindness In A Scary World, addresses the ongoing violence children see happening throughout the world, and sometimes even in their schools. The material she offers for parents is an excellent resource for introducing a subject that no one should have to be exposed to, least of all children, and it does so in a way that works very well with the story line. Teaching children to see the interconnectedness of the world, and everyone in it, helps them to feel as though they can be part of the solution, a much better position to be in than to feel like a passive observer and a possible helpless victim of something inexplicable. Becca Johnson’s illustrations are masterful and do a great job of complementing the story and the emotional responses of the child and his parents. Kindness In A Scary World: A Children’s Book About Terrorism is most highly recommended for parents, caregivers and teachers.

Grant Leishman

As adults, we have difficulties dealing with the traumatic events we see every day on the news; wars, often horrific scenes of violence and devastation, and of course, the aftermath of terrorism. If we struggle to handle these images and react appropriately, imagine how much more difficult it is for our children to cope with this. Children can often be left confused and scared, misunderstanding what is happening because of either the adult’s reaction to the event (anger, fright and worry), as well as by the pictures of the events themselves that are screened live onto our television screens or our computer monitors. This is the issue Rebecca J Hubbard seeks to address in her timely little book, Kindness In A Scary World: A Children’s Book About Terrorism. Hubbard seeks to give us no-nonsense advice on how to explain to a child what has happened when a terrorist strikes.

Rebecca J Hubbard specifically addresses terrorism in this particular book, but what I did like about it is that the advice she gives is equally applicable to many of the events occurring around the world on a daily basis; from natural disasters, to war/refugees, right through to the witnessing of an act of terrorism on live television. The book is not long and would be suitable to sit down and read to your child, regardless of age. Perhaps, most importantly, it stresses the need for the parents to ensure their child understands that nothing they did, or didn’t do, had anything to do with what was perpetrated. Children can often blame themselves for bad things they see happening around them. The book also provides a guide (at the end) for parents to prepare themselves for addressing this issue with their children. All in all, this book is a useful addition to a parent’s arsenal on how to deal with questioning children. The illustrations were a bonus and very nice.