Thursday, April 28, 2011

Birds Can Fly and So Can I

By Noa Nimrodi

Cinderella sang "A dream is a wish your heart makes.."  What child has never dreamed of flying? Who among us has never dreamed of soaring?  As a child, what was your dream? What was your fondest desire? Was it encouraged and supported, or was it frowned on, and your attention diverted to something more realistic?
Sadly dreams, particularly those sprung from the richness of childhood imagination, are often squashed by those who know that reality and dreamland do not always mix.  What if, instead of discouragement, encouragement was received when a child dreams?  Thoreau once wrote "I have learned, that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours."

Noa Nimrodi's new book Birds Can Fly and So Can I explores this very concept.  As Giraffe watches the birds fly high above her, she dreams she could fly.  In the midst of her dreaming, suddenly she finds that her spots have become wings and she soars. She dances in the clouds and plays with her friends high up in the air. Instead of being mocked for her endeavors, or being put down because everyone knows giraffes do not fly, Giraffe receives praise from the birds she so admires. 

Of course, this is just a dream.  Giraffes - just like children - cannot grow wings and fly no matter how much they might desperately wish to.  Yet by the end of this short story, Giraffe is not sad. She does not mourn her inability to fly. In fact, she comes to realize that by pursuing her dream, ultimately she found something in herself that she loves. There was something special about her, something she could do that nobody else could. This “something” prompts the praise of both birds and friends alike.

By following her dream, Giraffe realizes potential she never knew she had.  Children, if allowed to dream, will also realize that same type of potential in themselves. Encouraging this mindset, encouraging children to dream and to reach for the stars, the author generously includes a section for children to write their dreams.  For who knows...maybe one day giraffes, er, children, really will fly.

This short story written as a rhyme will greatly appeal to young children.  Parents will find that their children are drawn not only by the rhythmic cadence of the book but by the light hearted illustrations as well. Birds Can Fly and So Can I  is one of those books that young ones will be “reading” along with you because they have unknowingly tucked away the words in their subconscious. They will absorb that subtle lesson and they will learn that they can soar, just like Giraffe. It is one of those books that that after you close its covers to put it away up on the shelf, they will be crying "Again, again! Please, just one more time." How can you resist, for you yourself once were a child, and you yourself knew what it was to dream.

For all you dreamers out there and for all you parents of young dreamers, this a book you’ll want in your nursery’s collection of favorite books.

This review was submitted by Kristin  - Kristin is a wife, mom and the founder of The Book-Trotter.  She wrote her first review over 20 years ago and has been reading and loving books ever since.

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