Joyful by Ingrid Fetell Lee was a joy to read. Even though I have had big losses, huge challenges, and a deep lifelong sense of social isolation due to deafness in my life, I have always been able to spot or bring joy into my day-to-day life. It is often I would buoyantly collect bouquets of flowers from our six acres, cherish the row of tree frogs grinning from the top of our barn doors, relish in baking the most chocolate-est layered cake with ganache, eagerly head out in my canoe to look for mama Sandhill Crane on her nest, and delight with a jubilant reader who figured out an unknown word or read a whole book.
Lee illustrated the power of joy in its everyday ordinariness but also backed her chapters with science and neuroscience. She even shared that “in a state of joy, our mind-set becomes more fluid and more accepting of difference” and that “joyful surprises might help disrupt harmful stereotypes, increasing the chances that we’ll see difference as delightful, rather than threatening” (p. 186).
Since each chapter in this book is based on a source of joy, here is a challenge for teachers, parents, and literacy coaches:
How do we bring about joy of reading and writing in each of these areas?