What Is a Thought? (A Thought Is a Lot!)

Jack Pransky Amy Kahofer

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  • Ages: 7-10
  • Pages: 42
  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 9781936943036
  • Published: 2012


This poetic and engaging book introduces children (K-5th) to the amazing, creative power within us all: thought. It is not a book about changing thoughts or changing behaviors, but rather a story to help children (and adults!) see how their own thinking creates their lives, moment to moment, day to day.

Wonderfully illustrated, this children's book not only introduces young readers to the concept of thought but also the amazing power of their own thoughts. Authors Amy Kahofer and noted prevention specialist Jack Pransky tell a simple yet profound message: that our thinking creates our feelings and behavior, and when our minds are calm we have access to natural wisdom and healthy feelings.

Includes a Teaching CD

Lesson plans and activities on the enclosed CD transform a story into a teaching tool that can be used with regular and special education students alike to explore social thinking concepts such as perspective taking, abstract language, empathy and human relatedness.

The book introduces children to the amazing, creative power with-in us all, called thought. It is not a book about changing thoughts or changing behaviors, but rather a story to help children (and adults!) see how their own thinking creates their lives, moment to moment, day to day.

From Michelle Garcia Winner's Introduction

"What Is a Thought? is a charming children’s book with a two-fold purpose. First, it is an engaging story that introduces to the audience the concept of thought and the amazing power our thoughts have on our lives. As a read-aloud book it is perfect for parents to read with their children at home, and is a valuable and important book for all early elementary school teachers to share in their general education classes.

Second, the Lesson Plans and Activities section of the book (found on the accompanying CD) transforms a simple children's story into a teaching tool that explores perspective taking, abstract/inferential language, and introduces abstract visual images to its readers. Many of today’s students, especially those with autism spectrum disorders and nonverbal learning disorders which include social learning/social thinking challenges, struggle with interpreting language and communication that is abstract in nature. In varying degrees, these students lag behind their neurotypical peers for whom this type of social learning develops without direct teaching."

About the Authors

Amy Kahofer received her Master’s degree in Special Education from the University of Vermont. She has been working with young children for more than 20 years as a special educator, preschool and kindergarten teacher, and currently is a first-grade teacher in a public school in Vermont.

Jack Pransky has worked in the field of prevention since 1968 in a variety of capacities and now provides consultation, coaching, training, and counseling nationally and internationally. He has published many books for adults, including Parenting from the Heart, Modello: A Story of Hope for the Inner City and Beyond, Prevention from the Inside-Out, Somebody Should Have Told Us!, and also a curriculum for middle-school students called Healthy Thinking/Feeling/Doing from the Inside Out.

Amy and Jack live along a river in Moretown, Vermont.

About the Illustrator

Tina DuSablon began drawing long ago, while sitting at the kitchen table listening to her grandmother describe her self-taught illustration techniques. She has continued to draw and paint, alongside getting married, raising three boys, and working directly with children with special needs in Vermont public schools. She also lives in Moretown, VT.

Recommended Teaching & Learning Pathway

What is a Thought? is best suited for ages 7-10 and is more powerful when taught with other materials. Teaching social concepts should follow a natural sequence, from simple to complex, to support student learning. The following Teaching & Learning Pathway outlines the recommended teaching sequence by age group. As with our products, this pathway is relevant to clinicians, educators, parents—anyone helping a person develop their social competencies.

  • Ages 7-10

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