Hey readers! Today I am so excited to introduce a new series on the blog: Children’s Book Reviews. I thought that this would be a fun way to combine many of my passions: books, reading, pediatrics, inclusion, disability awareness, and more! Today I am sharing a children’s book that I absolutely adore. It is called Mighty Miss Maya: See It, Then Be It written by Ann Tisdale and illustrated by Daniel Wtodarski.
I discovered this book because it is actually written by the mother of a girl named Maya who has CP. Maya has an Instagram account (managed by her mom) called @mightymissmaya. I discovered her Instagram page during OT school, and I love following her journey. She is such a strong child with a sassy personality! When I saw that her mom wrote a book called Mighty Miss Maya: See It, Then Be It, I was so excited. You can grab a copy of the book here!
Why I Love It
I love this book for many reasons. First, I love that it supports inclusion and spreads disability awareness. The images in this book show a child with adaptive equipment/mobility aids such as a walker and canes. These images show children reading the book that they can do anything they set their mind to! I love this message. I also love that children with disabilities who read this book will be able to see themselves in a story, which is so important. The theme throughout the book is that even when there are obstacles, you are strong enough to conquer them. My favorite quote from the book is this:
“‘See it, then be it.’ Believe that it’s true! When I believe, there’s so much more I can do. We want you to know that you CAN do it too. We’re all MIGHTY inside. Yes, even you.” (Tisdale, 2020).
There are many ways that you can incorporate this book into OT! Here are a few:
- Building Positive Self-Concept – Reading this book with all children, especially children with disabilities, can build a positive self-concept. It teaches children that they are “mighty” and capable of doing things they set their mind to. It also allows children with disabilities to see themselves in the main character of the story.
- Motor Skills / Play – Try reading this story, or a passage from this story, then create a game out of what Maya does in the book.
- Build a pillow mountain and have the kiddo climb up the mountain – Gross motor skills: coordination, strength, balance; Executive functioning: organizing, planning
- Use a balance board or unstable surface and have the kiddo pretend to surf in the ocean (add a water component for multi-sensory play!) – Gross motor skills: balance, coordination
- Use a platform or rope swing and have the kiddo jump off the swing and over pillows (landing on a mat, of course) – Gross motor skills: strength, coordination; Fine motor skills: strengthen web space if holding a rope; Executive functioning: timing, planning
Tisdale, A. (2020). Mighty miss Maya: See it, then be it. Bee Mighty Press.