Community and helping others are very important values in our family. There are so many areas in our communities where helping hands are needed, but too often we think that someone else will do the work or that we are too busy to give back. Children have a natural generosity and often see needs where we adults don’t. One way we can encourage this generosity and spirit of giving back is through books such as Pairs of People by Jeanne and Mark K. Shriver.
I received this book for review courtesy of the publicist; all opinions expressed are my own. This post contains affiliate links; as an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Pairs of People overview
Pairs of People: A Book on Multiplying Goodness is a fun eye-spy, rhyming, counting book that will engage kids of all ages. It begins with a pair of people who decide to shovel their neighbour’s walk. (With the winter season coming up, it’s a good idea to start thinking about this simple way of giving back, especially if there are elderly people in your neighbourhood!) On the last page, twelve pairs of people are making meals for those in need.
Each page in the book suggests one small way that people (including children) can give back in their communities. Whether it’s helping a dog, cleaning the school, or participating in the local elections, there are numerous ways that we can reach out in our communities. And as the book suggests, it’s better if we do this together! We can multiply the good we can do if we can get our friends and relatives involved with us.
At the bottom of each page, little squares highlight the person doing the good deed and also aid in counting. This book reinforces math as well as good deeds by showing that “4 pairs = 8 people” and “4 x 2 = 8.” Kids will enjoy the pictures, poetry, numbers and stories in Pairs of People.
Written by a great pair who do a pair of wonderful things in this delightful children’s book: First Mark and Jeanne highlight the power of working together to help others, and then they manage to sneak in some math! We’re hoping Brad will finally learn his multiplication tables now! ~ Kim Williams-Paisley and Brad Paisley
Serving Others Is Simple and Fun
Pairs of People continues the ideas presented in 10 Hidden Heroes. That book highlighted the heroes in our community who do ordinary yet extraordinary things everyday and make our world a better place. While 10 Hidden Heroes encourages us to see the heroes around us everday, Pairs of People encourages us to become those heroes. We can’t just leave it to those in serving professions or leadership to take care of our community; each one of us can pitch in and help too.
It’s easy to become so busy and focused on our own problems that we don’t see the people around us who need help. We can also become so overwhelmed by the magnitude of the problems in our world (how do we deal with the hundreds of homeless people in downtown Vancouver?) that we feel helpless and do nothing. Both 10 Hidden Heroes and Pairs of People encourage us to step out and do something, help someone, even if it’s just one small job. One pair of people can make a difference to a neighbour; as Jeanne and Mark ask on the last page,
What if there were
50 pairs of people
working together as one?
What positive difference
could they make?
What goodness could be done?
Like Mother Teresa, each of us can step out our door and meet the need we see right there in our neighbourhood. And if we invite a friend to join us in doing that, we can double the results—and the fun!
More about the Authors
Mark K. Shriver is president of Don Bosco Cristo Rey High School and senior advisor at Save the Children in Washington, D.C. A New York Times bestselling author, he also wrote the Christopher Award-winning books A Good Man and 10 Hidden Heroes.
Jeanne Shriver lives in Bethesda with her husband, Mark. After working for Merrill Lynch and American Express for ten years, she left the corporate world to raise their three children. She has served on several non-profit and independent school boards since 1994 and is an active volunteer for several non-profits in her community.
Pairs of People is available at Amazon and your favourite bookstore.