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  • Writer's pictureHinton Magazine

Joy’s Playground: With Mindfulness and Resilience at its Heart, This New Children’sBook Looks Set t

This New Children’s Book Looks Set to be the Favourite Read on Many a Child’s Bookcase.

Whilst Joy is having fun in the playground with two animal friends, they’re joined by other furry buddies who aren’t having such a great day. Using her teaching and mindful experience, author Lizzy Shortall’s children’s story illustrates how mindfulness, resilience, gratitude and self- relief can be used to overcome challenges. With moods lifted, the friends are all set to continue their playground adventures.

Using her mindfulness and teaching skills to full effect, Lizzy Shortall’s Joy’s Playground is a cleverly constructed book for 4 to 8-year-olds that cleverly introduces a host of skillsets that will prove invaluable tools – resilience, mindfulness and self-belief - for youngsters as they go through life.

With the importance of resilience reinforced throughout the story, Joy’s Playground is endorsed and includes a foreword written by Professor Robbie Gilligan, Children's Resilience Researcher at Trinity College Dublin.

Joy’s Playground is destined to become a firm favourite for youngsters being read to, as well as older children taking their first steps to reading independently.


Joy is in the playground with her two friends: Jumpit the frog and Tortie the tortoise. They are joined by other friends who have been having a very bad day! But they all work together to help their friends overcome the challenges they face through gratitude, mindfulness and self-belief.

There are also less obvious threads portrayed in the book including friendship, teamwork and positive visualisation (of an ‘I can do this’ can), all of which help to achieve these skills and promote resilience too. More invaluable lessons for children taught through a fun story.

Joy’s Playground promotes resilience in children though practising and teaching important skills. Now more than ever anxiety, stress and change-management is crucial for young children.

Published on 26 th October 2021 by Cranthorpe Millner, Joy’s Playground is available in paperback

(£6.99) and is available to pre-order at

In the author’s (Lizzy Shortall) words:

This promotes resilience in children though practicing and teaching skills such as gratitude, self- belief and mindfulness.

It is a fun way to teach children resilience tools/ coping strategies during the formative years of starting school and all that brings. Now more than ever and following the Covid pandemic, anxiety, stress and change management are crucial. Separation anxiety will also be high for some young children.

There is lots of research out there that states these resilience promotion tools are scientifically researched and proven to promote resilience.

I lost my brother to suicide due to a mental health problem and as a former social worker this is my contribution to children's emotional wellbeing.

I wrote a self-help fictional book called The Lotus and The Tiger (released June 2021) which is based on some of my own challenging experiences. For example I went on a quest to make sense of the grief after my big brother died (sixteen years ago) and to find joy in my life again.

When the book was complete I realised it was mindfulness, gratitude and self-belief that got me through that time in my life and enabled me to experience joy again. The Lotus represents the bereavement I went through. That experience also was part of the reason I trained as a social worker and why I am such a strong mental health advocate for children and adults.

About the author:

Lizzy Shortall is certified to teach Mindfulness for Wellbeing in Schools from the Irish Mindfulness Academy. Over the last twenty-four years she has worked with children and adults in education, residential care, foster care, disability (for 15 years), addiction and (most recently) mental health

services in Ireland, England, Australia and America.


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