We are pleased to announce that our Resources page has been updated to include much more information designed to help you better understand and support grieving children, teens, and families. Whether you're a parent, teacher, counselor, or friend, we hope you'll find the information here useful.
Slate writer and poet Meghan O'Rourke has an impressive seven part series that chronicles her experiences after her mother's death from cancer in December. As a writer, she brings those skills of language as well as research to an emotional topic. Quoting everyone from Hamlet and C.S. Lewis to our own Franz Wright (Pulitzer Prize winner and Honorary Board Member of The Children's Room) and academic texts on grieving, O'Rourke weaves her own personal observations on her grief as an adult child when her mother dies at the young age of 55. A must read for people grappling with grief. Read the full article on Slate's website.
Our own founding board member and child bereavement expert Phyllis Silverman, Ph D is now the official writer for Psychology Today's new blog "Raising Grieving Children". In her inaugural post, she introduces herself and the influences that have shaped her over the years. Read it here and welcome Phyllis to a new audience. We are so pleased that she can share her talents with so many grieving families and people who need this information. Phyllis has a new book available which she co-wrote with Madelyn Kelly called: A Parent's Guide to Raising Grieving Children: Rebuilding Your Family after the Death of a Loved One.
“This was my great grandmother’s memory string,” Laura told Whiskers in a loud voice. “Then it was my grandmother’s, then my mother’s, and now it’s mine.” The Memory String by Eve Bunting is a book about a girl named Laura who tells her cat what each button stands for on her precious memory string. Since her mom died three years before, the buttons and memories mean a lot to Laura. The buttons all have special meaning, like the button from Laura’s birthday dress, or the khaki button from her dad’s uniform when he went to war, or the white button from her mother’s nightgown. Making a memory string is a way to remember family history, and that’s just what kids at The Children’s Room can do when they make one of their own. Listening to the book being read aloud to them is just one way to get ideas for how to make a memory string. Children in our groups can also choose from a large donation of beads that have been collected for the launch of this special project, where kids can paint wooden beads or make beads out of clay, then add them to beads or buttons from home.
Books are often a much needed resource when children, teens and families are grieving. Sometimes sharing a book with a friend, babysitter, teacher or relative is a simple way to let people know how we are feeling. Our wonderful library committee takes great pride in reviewing all the books in our library to identify the best books. Word of mouth is the best source of recommendations. Because everyone grieves differently, our library has a wide selection for all ages. The Children's Room library committee launched its new program for the year with a kickoff meeting to plan the calendar for the year. The key projects in the works are: Creating a special reading place for adults and children to read the books; Help families take advantage of the books we have in stock; Produce more lists of recommended readings to share tips and opinions about best books; and Planning special book-centered events which are always a big hit with the kids. Our lending library was started by and is maintained entirely by volunteers. Our library holds hundreds of books, all of them donated by our community. As with all of the work at The Children's Room, donors and volunteers have come together to make something special for our families. Volunteers are always needed for this active committee, so if you are interested in sharing your love of books with our community, please contact us at [email protected] We especially need help providing summaries of recommendations of books.