Me and my family
Me and my family is a colourful book designed to help adopted children and their families to get to know each other, just before adoption, in the early stages and later on. Through writing, drawing and other activities, children are drawn into exploring and recording the changes in their lives as they move to their new family.
Divided into three parts, this book provides space for both the adoptive child and the new family to write and draw about themselves and their feelings as they get to know each and learn to live together.
This easy to use and imaginative resource is ideal to help adopted children and families to grow together. A loose leaf insert for the adopters clearly sets out how the book can be used.
Who is this book for?
Looked after children who are to be adopted, children who have recently been adopted, and those who would benefit from undertaking life story work or direct work with their social workers, foster carers or adoptive parents.
The workbook can be used flexibly by any child, including children with special needs and children adopted from abroad.
What you will find in this book
Colour-coded sections include space for drawings, photographs, documents and a record of feelings and thoughts at various stages in the child’s life.
The book is divided into three parts:
Part One – Introducing ourselves and welcoming you – enables the new adoptive family to tell a child all about themselves, their family, their lives and their home. It includes sections on people and pets and has plenty of space for photographs and personal messages. There are also pages for the child to complete, allowing them to express their thoughts and feelings about their move, raise any questions or concerns they may have and say goodbye to their old home and carers.
Part Two – Moving in and getting to know each other – explores the significant changes and ups and downs that both the child and adoptive family can experience as they start their new life together. It includes sections on settling in, the family tree, likes and dislikes, changes, new friends and neighbours and celebrating Adoption Day.
Part Three – Living together – provides a record of family life and can be completed whenever something special, significant or memorable occurs. It can be used to capture family celebrations, hobbies, interests and key events as well as plans for the future and the thoughts of both the child and his or her parents on what becoming a family means to them.
A separate booklet with practice guidelines will help social workers and adoptive parents to understand the background and significance of completing the various sections of the book.
Jean Maye has many years’ experience of working in children and family services. She developed this book with the hope that it will help separated children to make their lives more complete by having a strong sense of themselves and establishing the foundation for new beginnings.
The British Association of Adoption and Fostering is very good at producing practical, useful books for children in the process of being fostered or adopted, and this latest addition to their list is another good idea. It is intended to be used as a child is getting used to the idea of being adopted into a new family. There are places to write and draw about feelings and changes, things that are worrying, things that are happy, ups and downs etc. The design of the book is colourful and welcoming, and altogether this is a useful tool for those dealing with children in the throes of adoption.
Books for Keeps, booksforkeeps.co.uk
This book could be very useful for a child moving from foster care to an adoptive family. Throughout the book, there are lots of spaces for young people to draw, write or stick in photos. This has a real advantage in terms of enabling the book to be very personalised. This book would form a nice record for a child to remember their early days in their new family. It could also provide a tool to increase attachment between the child and their adoptive family. The book could be adapted to a wide age range.
Youth in Mind
With plenty of space for free expression as well as helpful prompts to guide a child who may be feeing confused but unable to work out why, Me and my family is a realistic and positive book to help children and their families through the emotional process of adoption