What’s In Your Heart Today? by Louise Bladen, illustrated by Angela Perrini

Publication Date: 1 June 2021

The Blurb

What’s in your heart today? A fun and gentle first guide to mindfulness and de-stressing, for children and adults alike.

The Review

What’s In Your Heart Today? is a beautiful book that explores a whole range of situations that happen in every day life that could lead us to feel, sad, angry, lonely, scared or just plain discombobulated and out of sorts. By encouraging us to stop and think about how we feel, and what happened to make us feel that way, we are able to work out how to feel better again.

The simple rhyming text is paired with beautiful illustration. Perfect for sharing with classes all the way through primary school, it’s great for opening discussions about how different situations can make us feel, and how to calm ourselves, whether in a PSHE lesson or after a playtime filled with troubles and woes.

The Feeling: Loneliness

Loneliness is very different to being alone. We all have times when we just want to be, whether to take time out to reflect or just because we need some peace and quiet. But feeling lonely can happen even when we are surrounded by people. It could be because we’ve fallen out with friends. It could be because we feel as though no-one is listening to us, or we feel as though we are stood on the outside of our peers’ circle and can’t find a way to join them. It could be because we’ve moved schools and miss our old friends.

Firstly, it’s really important to acknowledge how we are feeling. We can all feel lonely sometimes – by accepting that is how we feel, we can work out why we are feeling that way.

Then, whatever the reason for feeling lonely, we need to work out how we can connect with someone. It might be that we need to fix a friendship or find someone who will listen. It might be that we need to approach a problem in a different way, find a different way to express ourselves, or even be brave and speak out rather than struggling on alone. Or it might just be we need someone to acknowledge we aren’t feeling great about something and to sit quietly with us while we work it through for ourselves.

Having spoken to our Year 6s about loneliness, as they have all felt it during the lockdowns when they couldn’t see their friends, they have suggested ways that they would help their classmates. Sometimes they’d just like someone to sit with them quietly so they can work through a problem knowing a friend is close by. They also said it’s good to have different friends who like different things – if you only have friends who like football for example, you’ll feel lonely on days when they are playing and you don’t want to. If something is worrying you at home, adults at school or sports clubs or other activities are always there to listen and help. And if someone new starts in your class, ask them what they enjoyed at their old school so you can play games they like to help them settle in, and keep in touch with old friends by calling or writing – everyone loves a letter in the post!

Huge thanks to Little Steps Publishing for inviting me to take part in the blog tour. Do make sure you check out all of the other stops.