NJ school staff are collaborating on a children’s book that explores ADHD

MONTCLAIR, NJ – What is the “reality” of a day at school for children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)? That’s what an elementary school counselor and physical education teacher with Montclair ties hope to explore with their new book, Aaron Daniel Henry Davis: Just Another Day at School.

Co-authors Melanie Bieber and Ralph Pacifico created the book to highlight the realities of the school day for children with ADHD and similar deficiencies, as well as the “endless potential that each of those children holds.”

“This book means so much to me because I was Aaron when I was a kid — so it really resonates with me both personally and professionally,” says Pacifico, a longtime physical education teacher at Montclair Kimberley Academy.

“With this book, our goal is to educate both students and adults about ADHD and share strategies and resources with teachers to ensure success for students with ADHD,” added the college baseball coach.

Bieber said ADHD can make it very challenging for a child to control thoughts and actions, pay attention, manage impulsive behaviors, follow directions and sit still.

“By making small changes in the classroom, maintaining open lines of communication, and working closely with outside professionals, parents, and other teachers, we can effectively support a child diagnosed with ADHD,” said Bieber, who works as an elementary school counselor in New York. Jersey and runs Level Up Counseling and Consulting LLC, a private mental health practice.

“That’s why we wanted to take our experiences and bring them to life through a book that many can relate to,” added Bieber.

Montclair Kimberley Academy (MKA) provided the following biographical information for the authors, as well as the illustrator, Tyrus Goshay:

Melanie Bieber, M. Phil. Ed, LPC spends her days mentoring students with ADHD. The Aarons of the world are Melanie’s favorite type of kid to work with. After graduating from MKA in 2003, Melanie received her BA in Psychology and Criminology from the University of Maryland and completed her graduate work in Human Development and Psychology and Counseling and Mental Health at Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania. Melanie works as an elementary school counselor in New Jersey and runs Level Up Counseling & Consulting, LLC, a private mental health practice. She and her husband, Evan, enjoy sharing the world of children’s literature with their two children, Zachary and Zoey.

Ralph Pacifico is a longtime physical education instructor and high school baseball coach. His passion for activity and sports has influenced students for over 30 years. Like our main character, Ralph has a lot of energy and has always found it difficult to sit still. Ralph has been married to Amy for 31 years. Together they raised 3 daughters Paige, Emma and Geena.

Tyrus Goshay is a Chicago-based, award-winning digital illustrator and 3D artist with over 18 years of experience. He serves as a college professor and teaches both game design and illustration in his spare time. Tyrus holds a bachelor’s degree in computer animation and multimedia and a master’s degree in teaching with technology (MALT). He has contributed to several award-winning projects in the world of toy design and is also recognized for his achievements in academia.

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