Happy Dreamer

Do you have a child that is a dreamer? Are you a dreamer yourself? I recently attended an event with Peter Reynolds at the Jacob Burns Center. He read some of his children’s books including The Dot, Ish and then read his most recent book, Happy Dreamer. Happy Dreamer brought me to tears because it describes a child that has big dreams, but is often discouraged from dreaming because of the world telling him to “sit down” and “focus”. This book is not only touching and captivating but magical in the way how Peter writes and draws the illustrations.

Happy Dreamer tells the story of a boy that follows his heart and can’t help but “hear a beat and I gotta move”. Each page describes a different type of dreamer including a loud dreamer, quiet dreamer, a colorful dreamer and a light up dreamer. His illustrations and words in this book are engaging and exciting for both children and adults. Reading Happy Dreamer with your child can help stimulate many conversations with questions such as, “What type of happy are you?” and “What type of dreamer are you?” At the end of the book, Peter describes and illustrates dozens of ways we can can happy such as “ice cream happy”, “sunshine happy”, etc and “kindness happy”, “make a difference happy” and much more. There is also a long list with delicate and unique illustrations of different types of dreamers such as “crazy dreamer”, “power dreamer”, “love dreamer” and much more. This activity in itself can be an excellent home or classroom activity. It can also help your child understand what type of happy you are as an adult! 

Happy Dreamer is an inspirational book for all but most importantly for those children who have ADHD. Children with ADHD are dreamers and can struggle when having to sit still and focus because they are often “driven by a motor” and can think slightly differently than others. From my perspective, ADHD can be a precious gift because these magical thoughts can be turned into wonderful realities if we can support our children in how they think versus trying to make them “inside the box” children. Happy Dreamer is a beautifully written and illustrated book that should be in everyone’s library including school and home libraries. Having inspirational children’s literature such as this book can help our children who are typical and have special needs celebrate the person they are meant to be and support the way they can be happy and continue to dream the unimaginable.

Check out the book trailer here!


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