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Sunny Side Up by Clare Helen Welsh & Ana Sanfelippo


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Dec 14, 2023
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January can be a long, dull, depressing month but seeing things Sunny Side Up can help you find positive ways to get through greyer days. This simply written, beautifully illustrated picture book acknowledges that it’s ok to experience negative emotions. It takes inspiration from cognitive behavioural therapy techniques and uses innovative glasses to help children find ways to articulate and deal with these emotions.

The Story: A grumpy child discovers the effects of putting on a wonderful pair of glasses! Sunny-side specs help them see the world in a different way – a bad mood can become good, boring becomes fun and alone becomes together. But as well as encouraging children to see the world differently and more positively the book also acknowledges that sometimes there isn’t a sunny side and sunny-side specs may not work for a while.

Familiar childhood experiences such as playground games, fishing, moving house and birthday parties are all featured along with the various emotions that can accompany them. Each page showing a negative emotion – fear, boredom, sadness – includes a small window that reveals a tiny part of the positive solution on the next spread, on a first reading it’s fun to guess what you’ll see when you turn the page.

A large part of the book is told through the bold, vibrant illustrations. We love the way that die-cuts, fold outs and flaps add a fun element to the reading experience and help transform the character’s world as they learn to explore and deal with difficult situations and emotions. This fabulous illustration uses flaps to show how a difficult situation can be resolved…


Bold colours, grey backgrounds and different kinds of weather also help to portray emotions and feelings. We absolutely love the illustration showing a houseful of happy, busy people and the way that colourful raindrops fall when the main character is sad.


Sunny Side Up - rain - Story Snug

Sunny Side Up is a great book to read in a nursery or key stage one classroom. It can stimulate discussions about emotion and inspire a ‘positivi-tree’ classroom wall display. The back cover of this sturdy hardback has a sunny-side specs cut out and children can also have fun making their own sunny-side specs using these templates.

Age Range: 4+

Author: Clare Helen Welsh / Illustrator: Ana Sanfelippo

We were lucky to win Sunny Side Up in a giveaway – thank you Clare Helen Welsh for such a generous prize

The post Sunny Side Up by Clare Helen Welsh & Ana Sanfelippo appeared first on Story Snug.
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