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One Day, Today

A young single dad finds ways to teach language to his child

Photo of Tea Shyan
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One Day, Today

Every day I go to class with daddy. He says, "little one, everyone has something they need to learn", and then he gives me my word of the day. Today the word is 'scholar'. 

I can't say it yet, but one day I will.

We stop in front of a coffee shop. He points to a square with red letters inside.

"Open", says daddy while he points to the sign. He looks at me. I think he wants me to say it too, but for now I can only babble. 

After class daddy and I walk to the used book store. Daddy reads me stories until Nana comes to get me. 

He gives me hugs and kisses and tells me he loves me with his hands. He says it's called signing. "One day", says daddy and off to work he goes.

While Nana drives home she plays songs for me to listen to. 

At home I play outside.

Nana yells, "NO, NO" when she sees me in the dirt, but then she says, "Oh nevermind, playing is learning".

When daddy gets home we play heads shoulders and he tickles me. "Laugh it up so you can practice those sounds".

Then he puts me into my crib and I said "da-da".

Daddy laughed and jumped and hugged me tight. "You're the smartest child in the world", says daddy and I know he's right.



Describe the intended vision for your early childhood book manuscript in 1-2 sentences

The vision is for the setting to look similar to Center City Philadelphia. I would like for the dad to appear young (the early twenties) and the child to look gender neutral.

Share your suggested book title

One Day, Today

PLEASE USE THE VERSION OF THIS QUESTION AT THE TOP OF THE SUBMISSION FORM: Share a draft of your manuscript (250 word limit, not including title).

Every day I go to class with daddy. He says, "Blossom, everyone has something they need to learn", and then he gives me my word of the day. Today the word is 'scholar'. I can't say it yet, but one day I will. We stop in front of a coffee shop. He points to a square with red letters inside. "Open", says daddy while he points to the sign. He looks at me. I think he wants me to say it too, but for now I can only babble. After class daddy and I walk to the used book store. Daddy reads me stories until Nana comes to get me. He gives me hugs and kisses and tells me he loves me with his hands. He says it's called signing. "One day", says daddy and off to work he goes. While Nana drives home she plays songs for me to listen to. At home I play outside. Nana yells, "NO, NO" when she sees me in the dirt, but then she says, "Oh nevermind, playing is learning". When daddy gets home we play heads shoulders and he tickles me. "Laugh it up so you can practice those sounds". Then he put me into my crib and I said "da-da". Daddy laughed and jumped and hugged me tight. "You're the smartest child in the world", says daddy and I know he's right.

How has this book been informed by early childhood language development research and evidence? (response minimum 250 Characters)

I used the given links to learn some of the ways babies and toddlers can absorb language skills. These techniques include music, conversation, reading, and playing.

Please describe any familiarity you may have with Philadelphia and its residents? (optional question)

I was born and raised in Philadelphia. I went to Community College of Philadelphia and Center City is my favorite place to be.

How have you crafted this manuscript to resonate with and/or reflect the experiences of those living in urban contexts? (optional question)

I hope that while caregivers are reading this book they are storing some of the techniques in their mind to use with their little one. I believe that simply seeing a children's book about a young single dad will knock down the barriers of "normalcy". Many children from urban communities may not grow up with both parents whose lives have gone perfectly according to plan. There are so many parents who are still in school and struggling to be a parent, an employee, and a student and I think instead of looking down at that, the effort and dedication should be celebrated or at least represented by this book. For the caregivers, I hope it encourages those in a similar situation.

Location: Country

USA

Location: State or Department

PA

Location: City

Pottstown

Tell us more about you / your team

I am Tea, a young single parent of two. In writing for children the thing I value most is the opportunity to make a child think, "I can do that" or "I want to be like that". The priority of writing a children's book is to produce a story that works well with other books to make a child a lifelong reader. I am not connected with the partners of this challenge, but I do fit the criteria of the person who will benefit from this challenge. As a young single parent from Philly I was not aware of the endless ways to help further my child's language development and I definitely didn't know how important it was for their future. There was a period of time when I got used to just trying to make it through the day and I wasn't giving my first child the proper academic attention and connection she needed.

Provide an example visual identity for a look and feel you might like to achieve. ( (optional question, 3-5 visuals)

For this book, I think painting would work best. I want the pictures to be busy just as the city truly is and for babies to be able to find many things to focus on. I would like the locations in the book to favor the real locations. For example, the used book store should look like the Book Corner which is a used book store in Center City. When the dad and child are leaving class the college should imitate the Community College of Philadelphia.

Multiple Choice - Have you been previously published (online, self-published, and print included)?

  • Yes

If yes, please list titles and publications.

"Girl"-Published by MAGINATION Press

Do you have an agent?

  • No

How did you hear about the Challenge? (optional question)

  • Instagram

What best describes you? (optional question)

  • I am/we are creatives, writers, or artists

1 comment

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Photo of Dawnnbooks .
Team

A story so full of love.
I like that this is a daddy story.
Good luck to us all.