This is What I Pray Today: The Divine Hours Prayers For Children

Phyl­lis Tick­le; Elsa War­nick, illus.
  • Review
By – December 16, 2011
This beau­ti­ful­ly illus­trat­ed book of well­craft­ed poems is not a Jew­ish book” but rather a book of prayers of praise and grat­i­tude to God — all based on psalms. Each poem is meant to lead the child gen­tly through the week. The days of the week are divid­ed into three time peri­ods (“the divine hours”) when chil­dren should pray: Wak­ing Up,” Rest­ing,” and End­ing My Day.” The themes in each poem will appeal to young chil­dren. Nature poems about clouds that drift and birds that fly” as well as about life in the city are spread out on gen­er­ous pages with lots of white space. The issue Jews will have with this book is that the author has cho­sen to make Shab­bat invis­i­ble. On the pages devot­ed to Fri­day night and Sat­ur­day, Shab­bat is nev­er men­tioned. With its love­ly pas­tel illus­tra­tions and attrac­tive design and lay­out, this book might be used for very young chil­dren as an intro­duc­tion to prayer, and even to God. But those look­ing for a Jew­ish book won’t find it. Ages 2 – 5.
Anne Dublin is the teacher-librar­i­an at Holy Blos­som Tem­ple in Toron­to, Cana­da and an award-win­ning author of books for chil­dren and young adults. Her lat­est book is June Call­wood: A Life of Action (Sec­ond Sto­ry Press, 2006).

Discussion Questions