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A morning announcement: Teacher Appreciation Week begins Monday, and we've found the ultimate gift —The brand-new Big Activity Book for Teacher People (TarcherPerigee) by Jordan Reid and Jacqueline Ann May. It offers compassionate comic relief for these front-line heroes, and it's just $16 (down from $18) at Amazon.
What a wild ride teachers have had — the mystery virus, the sudden shift to virtual, the shaky return to in-person classes, teaching through masks, the infection-uptick shutdowns, pivoting and pivoting until vertigo hits. And yet these mighty heroes have lifted our children above it all.
It’s been tough. So tough, in fact, that I, myself, quit teaching when my school shifted back to in-person in the fall of 2020. I'm in awe of those who persevered, but I'm especially in awe of the teachers at my own child's school who never wavered after their school building was destroyed in a fire one devastating night this past February. (No one was hurt…physically, at least.)
To thank all the teachers we know, I’ve been doling out The Big Activity book for Teacher People as comedic catharsis. Part scream journal, part coloring book, part meditation, and all hilariously therapeutic, this book is exactly what I would’ve wanted. It's compassionate comic relief on sale for just 16 bucks. Order now and you'll have it in time for Teacher Appreciation Week.
Each of the 133 fun-pages feels like a mini therapy sesh with your funniest friend. There's the Teacher Appreciation Week mad-lib, an all-too relatable "Things you never thought you'd say out loud" roundup and exercises such as "Draw the haircut of your off-duty dreams."
The playful yet earnest “Mental Health Check-in" checklist weaves in coping strategies so deftly that the reader won't even notice they are getting help. A coloring page of “Things you do not want to receive from a parent — like ever” includes a regifted candle, an apple mug, and other over-gifted items but leaves dedicated space for reflections on a meaningful gift received. (This book is sure to earn a mention.)
Coauthors Reid (who cowrote the Big Activity Books for the anxious, the pregnant, the divorced, et al) and May (There’s No Manual: Honest and Gory Wisdom About Having a Baby) are a perfect pairing for this profoundly funny, thoroughly badass activity book. They really get teachers.
"It's official! Schools should scrap professional development workshops this year and just hand out copies of The Big Activity Book for Teacher People instead. Let teachers laugh and cry and color! We're so tired! Please just let us color!" wrote Abby Freireich and Brian Platzer, teachers and coauthors of Taking the Stress out of Homework.
And an art teacher who received it as a gift wrote in their five-star review: "Amazing illustrations! I laughed through the entire book!"
Gift this book to every educator you know: Current and retired teachers, student teachers, principals, subs and beyond. Even my 8-year-old, who has been discussing her plans to open a school ever since she could talk, is begging for her own copy.
And if you are a teacher, please know: We appreciate you!
The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication
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