Winner of the John E. Weaver Excellent Reads Award: Globally Mindful
Mom's Choice Silver Award
Eric Hoffer Book Award distinction: Montaigne Finalist Medal for Thought Provoking Title
In Jelly Beans the Cheetah and Hope the unlikely pairing of a sad little girl and a captured cheetah discover how much they share in common when they embark on an adventure in friendship. They've both experienced profound loss but persevere through sharing empathy kindness joy and love. Together they learn about their connection to the human family and to all which provides for their self-esteem and a feeling of wholeness.
Jelly Beans the Cheetah and Hope is a vehicle for empowering youth with empathy to spring into compassionate action! Compassionate action refers to the positive impact youth can make by caring about the plight of all people. Set in Tanzania Africa with the Barabaig tribe the book encourages youth to identify with the characters as they experience difficulty persevere model empathy and then are shown empathy by the tribe. Together these special friends demonstrate our connection to all including the endangered cheetah showing that we all belong.
Illustrated by Jacob Peterson and Perpich Center Students
SissyMarySue is a lifelong Minnesota educator. She is widely recognized for her innovative Jelly Beans Creative Learning approach that focuses on emotional competence critical thinking cultural sensitivity language learning and the natural world. After retiring the Jelly Beans Creative Learning brand she launched SissyMarySue producing books that focus on literacy emotional competence critical thinking and world themes. Using her books as content her play/drama approach has been effectively implemented in many classrooms from pre-K to middle school.
Through speaking and training SissyMarySue demonstrates her philosophy that empowering youth with empathy and an understanding of our shared humanity results in more tolerance peacefulness and harmony. Classroom management is less of an issue when we empower our youth with empathy equipping them with emotional competence. This empowerment inspires youth to spring into compassionate action in service for their world.
"Wow! What an emotion-packed message skillfully woven together! It will provide inspiration to people of all ages who can embrace this important message of love. Love is transformational! I am so happy about the wonderful accomplishment of this masterpiece." - Bob Solheim executive director of N.C. Little Hospice
"SissyMarySue is an innovator and has a passion for education learning and young people. She has an excellent understanding of how to positively motivate and challenge teachers to enhance student learning. She is constantly working to improve her skills and maximize her talent. Her children's book is just one example of her success." - Dr. Ric Dressen Ed.D. superintendent of Edina Public Schools
"SissyMarySue's devotion to educating and inspiring youth to develop their empathy skills is positively infectious. SissyMarySue has embodied just the qualities she seeks to encourage in youth through the vehicle of her books-empathy commitment to community and largeness of heart." - Lee Truer M.A. graduate advisor of Human Development at St. Mary's University