Thursday, January 26, 2017

Celebrate the Power of Kids by Donna Galanti

Today I’m asking you to help celebrate the power of kids.

Photo by Chris & Karen Highland via Creative Commons

As grownups we shape and guide kids – as parents, as teachers, as leaders. We are their models. We don’t always do the right thing. We don’t always make the right choices. But we don’t give up trying – and that’s what kids see. You are the reason why a kid didn’t give up. You can make a difference. And as a parent, we carry this awesome gift that is scary and wonderful all at the same time!

When we think of heroes we may think of police officers, firefighters, and doctors. But kids can be heroes too – and it’s up to us to help them see that. They can be heroes sometimes in big, noisy ways and sometimes in small, quiet ways. We all have the power inside to be our own hero!

My (kid-hero) son giving the gift of time to listen to the life stories of his great-uncle
I’ve met and read about so many amazing kids lately that are overcoming obstacles, big and small, and letting the power of their voice shine through. Like Caine. At nine he built his dream and didn’t give up, even when no one would share in it. You’ll be so inspired by what he started. Read the story. And Mason, a seven-year-old who gave up birthday presents to feed an animal shelter. And Erik, an amazing teen author, book blogger (This Kid Reviews Books), and super reader. Get to know him!

Kids matter. We need to let them know they matter. We need to let them know their voice matters. As writers, we can do that through books. You've got the power!

Image by Pixabay

Some of my favorite middle grade reads where kids find their own power within themselves:

Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper
Wonder by R.J. Palacio (after reading 3x, my son would go in the book store and ask, “Do you have any more books like Wonder?”)
Holes by Louis Sachar
Surviving Bear Island by Paul Greci
Ungifted by Gordon Korman
Almost Home by Joan Bauer
The Ruins of Gorlan: Book 1 (Ranger's Apprentice) by John A. Flanagan

I wrote my first children’s book, Joshua and the Lightning Road, for my son Joshua. It’s a story about finding super powers, but also about finding your own special power inside that no one can take away.

In the book, Joshua discovers he has magical powers, but he quickly discovers that sometimes the power he’s had all along within himself is even bigger than magic. He tells his friend Charlie, “You don’t need powers to do the right thing. All you need is to believe in yourself.”

I’m reading an amazing manuscript by one of my novel critique partners right now, Joe McGee and former Mayhemmer, about a young disabled boy who lives as a regular kid. His life challenges don't hold him back from doing what he loves. I don’t want to give anything away J but he inspires me to believe we truly can overcome anything. Words matter – and especially to kids. I hope this manuscript is soon on book shelves everywhere!

One of my favorite childhood heroes was (still is) Anne Frank, who, as we know, lived for over three years in an attic with her family trying to survive during the Holocaust. Anne Frank inspired me as a kid with her words. She taught me that I could be my own hero (we also share the same birthday!). It was because of her that I started my first diary that helped me find my own power through writing.

Anne wrote in her diary, “Despite everything, I believe that people are really good at heart.” She was a quiet hero but her quiet words had the power to affect the world.

A few of my journals from childhood
And I want kids to know they can affect the world too, so I'm sharing my Kid Heroes series that features kids doing heroic things – in big and quiet ways. And for each feature I donate $10 to Kids Wish Network, a special program that grants wishes to kids who face remarkable challenges and are in desperate need of hope.

Nominate a special kid today and help them keep flying on their own special journey  J .

What are some of your favorite books that empower kids (and you too!)? Do you know any kid heroes? 


  1. Thank you for the shout-out! And, you are absolutely right! Kid Power! :D

  2. Thanks for stopping by Erik! Yes, kids have super powers - they just need to discover them :)


Thanks for adding to the mayhem!