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When Life is Scary

Big Bear Was Not the Same written by Joanna Rowland and illustrated by John Ledda, published by Beaming Books.

Joanna Rowland does a brilliant job explaining PTSD without mentioning it at all. In Big Bear Was Not the Same, Little Bear and Big Bear are best friends. Usually, Big Bear is the one to protect Little Bear. But a tragic forest event frightens Big Bear more than either one of them realizes. When Big Bear stops climbing trees and startles at certain sounds and smells, Little Bear tries to cheer him up as any good friend would think to do. But then he realizes that just being with Big Bear, by his side, on his good days and bad days is what Big Bear really needs.

John Ledda's illustrations perfectly portray Little Bear and Big Bear's friendship and all the fun they have together. His simple lines and soft pallet are as comforting and reassuring as Rowland's text.

Imagine It!

No one wants to imagine something horrible happening, so let's remember a time when we were a friend to someone who was scared. Or, maybe think of a time when someone comforted you. What did they or you do to try to make everyone feel better? Did it work? Why or why not?

Write a letter or draw a picture to show what helps you when you are scared.

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