How can storytelling be used to encourage respect and care for our own bodies and for the physical wellbeing of our communities? Brooke Harris Garad and Leigh Patel, both educators and caregivers, share a story about a little girl named Yani who is learning about different kinds of bodies in Cool Culture’s Physical Wellbeing Toolkit. Across one afternoon and evening, Yani thinks about the wellbeing of her body, family members’ bodies, bodies of animals, water, and even stars. “This story opens up chances to talk with young ones about how we take care of bodies and how we can do that for many forms of life,” Brooke and Leigh write. “This story is a toolkit for igniting imagination and encouraging conversations with young children about a range of physical wellbeing practices.”
The toolkit offers different suggestions to inspire physical wellbeing through art and culture. Taking a moment to read stories together like the one in this toolkit, perhaps in a cozy space with a favorite toy or blanket, is an act of care for our bodies. Exploring the food traditions of our cultures and choosing what to prepare and share for nourishment is another act of care. We invite you and your little ones to reflect, how would you like to care for your physical wellbeing today?
Cool Culture’s Health + Wellbeing Toolkits are designed to support discussions about individual, family and community health and wellness. Each Toolkit is informed by conversations with our network of families, educators, and other partners across New York City. We hope this Physical Wellbeing Toolkit helps our community members come away with a deeper awareness of their current state of wellbeing and actionable first steps to move towards a vision of wellbeing for ourselves and our communities.
You can download copies of the Physical Wellbeing Toolkits for your home or classroom in English, Spanish, and Chinese. They include storytelling resources, an art-making activity, and a museum feature to encourage use of your Family Pass.