American Hero Books were created for infant-preschool age children. The images and text depict Service Members doing things common to a regular day, AND the specialty formatting allows pictures to be inserted over those printed in the books so the child can “see” their own parent at work. The books are constructed from sturdy laminated board so that kids can hold, play with, and interact with them safely, and each page has an acetate sheet over the pictures so pictures stay safe from even too much kissing!
Though created for young children our books were designed to grow with the child. Below are some book features that you can use to help your children get the most out of American Hero Books no matter what their ages:
- Insert your own picture over those that are printed in the books! The book’s pages open at the top so you can slide your own 4×6 picture into the frame enabling the child to “see” his/her own parent at work.
- Make story-time an interactive experience. Let the child hold the book and help turn the pages. Engage them with questions about what they see on the page and even get them to act out what the Service Members are doing.
- Each book cover features the licensed uniform pattern of the specific Service Branch. At this time each branch has their own pattern thus making their uniforms unique and identifiable. Talk about what the different camouflage colors blend into and how the patterns “hide” the wearer in their environment.
- The books inner pages are colored with the specific Service Branch colors. Talk about what those colors represent and show where they can be found on the uniforms, flags, and insignias or emblems of that branch.
- Each picture is framed with the ribbon of a medal or award that Service Members and Units can earn. Talk to the child about the ribbon, what it is earned for, and how those values can be incorporated into daily life.
- The insignia or emblem of each Service Branch is featured in the book. Talk to the child about what it represents and where it can be seen on uniforms, flags, equipment, or other service related devices.
- For certain books the mascot and motto of the Service Branch is included as well (but not all Service Branches have these features.) Talk to the child about the mascot name, sounds the Service Members might make, and what value the motto espouses.
- The 2nd to last page of each book features the Service Branch song or hymn. Sing it with the child so that when they have an opportunity to go to military events, functions, or parades they will be able to identify the song representing their parent.
- The last page of each book contains a list of tips to help children through periods of separation from their Service Member parent. If your child will be separated from a military parent for a period of time please consider incorporating some of these tried and true methods into your child’s daily life.
- Using American Hero Books in a regular daily routine that allows the child to “see” Daddy or Mommy helps the child to develop and maintain a close relationship with that parent through every cycle of military life.
- To learn more about the colors, emblems, awards, and song of each branch click on a link below:
- Marine Corps
- Air Force
- Coast Guard