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August 24, 2023

Embracing New Possibilities for Connection

Avery Crews Prado de Lima, TPF Fellow 2023/24

“As human beings, our job in life is to help people realize how rare and valuable each one of us really is, that each of us has something that no one else has—or ever will have—something inside that is unique to all time. It’s our job to encourage each other to discover that uniqueness and to provide ways of developing its expression.” Fred Rogers

I have always believed that books possess the remarkable ability to be life-changing. While some of those changes might be things like waking up an hour earlier each day, working to be more minimalistic, or exercising more frequently, others have the capacity to shake up your entire worldview. When You Wonder, You’re Learning – Mister Rogers’ Enduring Lessons for Raising Creative, Curious, Caring Kids by co-authors Gregg Behr and Ryan Rydzewski is one such book.

In October of 2022, I had the privilege of listening to a presentation by Greg and Ryan at a conference in Austin, Texas. I walked away with a copy of the book, lots of questions, and a new appreciation for Mister Rogers. Imagine my surprise when, nine months later, I was tasked with marketing the When You Wonder Book Circle Project.

This book asserts that the beloved Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood provides a blueprint of “tools for learning” for parents, educators, and communities that work to nurture curiosity, creativity, and a love for their fellow humans in the learners of today.

With the guidance of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, Gregg and Ryan explore the impact that Mister Rogers had on generations of children that have become the adults and leaders around us today. This book encourages us to reimagine learning in a way that allows for new possibilities for generations of children to come. I invite you to join me and other community members in an exploration of learning by participating in the When You Wonder Book Circle Project.

You can learn more about hosting or joining a book circle, the support offered by The Patterson Foundation, and more here.

I also invite you to join us on September 13 and 14 in Charlotte, DeSoto, Manatee, and Sarasota counties for our When You Wonder Book Circle Project Kick-Off Events. This is an opportunity to listen to a conversation with co-author Ryan Rydzewski, ask questions, connect with others, pick up your books, and embrace new possibilities for learning. Click here to learn more and to register.


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