About the BookTitle: Good Night, Animal World: A Kids Yoga Bedtime Story | Author: Giselle Shardlow | Illustrator: Emily Gedzyk | Publication Date: September 20, 2013 | Publisher: Company: Kids Yoga Stories LLC | Pages: 32 | Recommended Ages: 2.5 to 6 years Summary: Say good night to the animals of the world! Calm your mind and body before bedtime by taking a journey around the world with this kids yoga storybook. Join six Kids Yoga Stories characters as you perch like a bald eagle, crouch like a tiger, and curl up like a sloth. The book includes a list of Kids Yoga Poses and a Parent Guide with tips on creating a successful bedtime experience. Learn something new, explore movement, and unwind together before bedtime!
BBB: What inspired you to become a writer?
GS: My passion for writing comes from being an avid reader and a lover of children’s books. Writing was never my strength, so I took a class on writing for children, and I’ve been building my confidence over the years. After I took yoga teacher training in 2005, I was hit by a flood of ideas for combining yoga with stories. At first, I was only recording my ideas as storyboards. It wasn’t until after taking the writing class that I really began to put the stories together into a cohesive piece of writing. I was motivated to write stories that encourage children to move their bodies, learn about the world, and have fun together.
BBB: Tell us about your book, Good Night, Animal World: A Kids Yoga Bedtime Story.
GS: I created Good Night, Animal World for my two-year-old daughter, so we could practice yoga before bedtime. She’s a lively spirit, and I thought movement would help release her extra energy. It worked! She went from being hyperactive before acting out the book, to being able to sit still for story time. Then she went to bed happily. I also wanted us to take a pretend trip around the world and meet animals in different countries. My daughter loves animals, so creating yoga stories inspired by animals made sense. Also, it was a great opportunity to introduce all six of our yoga kids from six different continents. Putting it all together, the reader says good night to animals around the world through simple yoga poses, in the hopes of getting a better night’s sleep.
BBB: What do you think readers will enjoy most about your book?
GS: My daughter knows that this book involves movement. She runs down the hallway saying, “yoga time.” She loves acting out the animals and saying “Good night, kangaroo” or “Good night, eagle.” She knows the words of the book through the actions. Reading the book together has become a bedtime bonding experience for my daughter and me. This connection helps get her ready to go to sleep in a calm and relaxed way. Other families say they have experienced the same benefits of movement and story before bedtime after reading this book.
BBB: What do you hope children will learn from your story?
GS: I hope that the children will learn how to relax their bodies and calm their minds at bedtime by practicing easy yoga poses. Along their journey, I hope that they learn about some new animals and begin to appreciate how children around the world go to sleep. I think that this collective idea that all children go to bed will help children to see that bedtime is not something forced upon them by their parents, but something that all people do every day, everywhere in the world. I also hope that they discover reading is fun!
BBB: Are you currently working on another book?
GS: Yes, I’m working on a number of yoga stories for toddlers and preschoolers, focusing on teaching the First Concepts. The next book, Hello, Bali, is complementary to this Good Night, Animal World book, and it features one of the yoga kids, Anamika, who practices energetic poses designed to be practiced during the day. The book also celebrates the beauty of the Indonesian island of Bali. A yoga counting book is also in production, too. It’s going to be an exciting year!
The yoga stories bring together my life’s passions: travel, books, teaching, and yoga. And the excitement of sharing that with children around the world motivates me to write more yoga stories every day. Thank you so much for the opportunity to share the Kids Yoga Stories with you and your readers. I hope you enjoy reading the yoga stories as much as I enjoy creating them.
"This book has been so amazing for my 2.5 year old daughter! The illustrations are adorable! She is always so rambunctious at bedtime and this lets her get out some of that excess energy. She loves the book so much that this has been one we read every night. It helps my daughter fall asleep faster which means more time for mom in the evenings." ~ 5 Star Review, cwalt047, Amazon
"Another GREAT book!! I used this book for my kids yoga classes for ages 2-5 years old. After a very active yoga class, we read this book and did the yoga poses before the resting portion of the class. My little yogis loved the pictures and saying Good Night to all of the animals one by one. I played a calming song with some animal noises in the background and we were then able to quiet our minds and bodies for the pose of rest. I think this will become a regular pre-resting story for my classes with this age group. My 5 year old son loves to read this book again and again too! Keep the great books coming!" ~ 5 Star Review, Stacy Daniels - Kids Yoga Teacher, Amazon
"What a delightful book to get young children reading and moving in a wind-down, calming story about saying goodnight to the animals of the world. I am a k-12 Reading Certified teacher who blogs about parenting at The Educator's Spin On It. I am big fan of literacy activities that combine movement and geography in a loving parent / child interaction experience and Good night, Animal World does just that. This book would be a great addition to your book shelf." ~ 5 Star Review, Amanda at The Educators' Spin On It, Amazon