We don't have to wait until June to celebrate fathers. Here are two of my favorite new books that celebrate the relationship between children and their dads.
The best part of a new school year? New books! We just got 5 boxes of books from Scholastic and are quickly getting them processed and into students' hands. Here are two great series we've added to the collection:
It's easy to see why Wanted! Ralfy Rabbit Book Burglar was nominated for the Scottish Children's Book Award in 2016. It's downright adorable. Being a wee bit Scottish myself and a fellow book-lover, I had to add this to my collection. This is a great book to use as an example of when the audience has more information than the characters. For example, in the story we know that Ralfy is stealing Arthur's books, but Arthur does not know anything about Ralfy. Although I can not condone stealing books, I can relate to Ralfy's love of making book lists! This illustration reminded me right away of my own GoodReads account.
This is an excellent read-aloud, especially if you belt out the big, bold words. Get ready to yell: "Stop you little bunny book thief!" (one of my favorite lines). Or you can listen to the author read it aloud herself here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mj20MAmb1c4
Thankfully, in the end, Ralfy learns that stealing books is wrong. Better yet: He learns about a place he can go to borrow any book he wants, as long as he remembers to always bring them back. The Library!
On a whim I picked up Grumpy Pants through Amazon. Finn loves penguins and it looked like something simple that he would enjoy. The back cover reminded me of a Mo Willems Pigeon book. It definitely reminds me of the Mo Willems or Jon Klassen sense of humor.
Then, I read it to a class of Kindergartners and immediately got a chorus of "Read it again! Read it again!" that is the true sign of a read-aloud winner. Grumpy Pants is a simple story of a penguin who is grumpy for no good reason. He blames his grumpiness on his clothes and tries to "shake it off", removing each item of clothing one at a time. In the end a bath, some cocoa, and his favorite pajamas make him feel better. He falls asleep knowing that "tomorrow will be a better day because all the grumpy will be washed away." (his grumpy clothes are pictured in the laundry).
This story reminded me of the many posts I've seen going around on Facebook lately. A lot of my friends are parents of young or school-aged children who have been acting particularly grumpy since school has started. The thought is that school can take a lot out of us, making us sit quietly, listen carefully, work hard, and think think think! This can drain our batteries and make us feel grumpy for no good reason. If you find that you or your child is feeling grumpy after school, try some relaxation techniques to calm down before anything that requires more rigorous thinking.
I like to relax by making and eating a snack or singing a favorite song. In Grumpy Pants, Penguin relaxed by taking a bath and getting ready for bed. What helps you relax and recharge your batteries after a day of rigorous learning?
I immediately knew I was going to love More-igami from the title page. The pages appear to be folded like origami, but don't worry! No one folded the pages of this library book. That was just part of master illustrator G. Brian Karas’ technique to make this story about persistence all the more special. Then, the first page of the story made me laugh out loud. “Joey loved things that folded.” Just look at Joey admiring his taco.
Joey discovers the art of origami from a parent presentation at school. He also learns that to be good at origami (like most things) you need “practice and patience”. Joey’s constant practice wears down his mother’s patience and he needs to find a new place to practice his art. Enter Muy Mexicana, the restaurant of a very patient Mr. Lopez and plenty of napkins for origami practice!
There are two things that make this book stand out above others.
This is Dori Kleber’s picture book debut… But I'm keeping a close eye out for more greatness from her!
Welcome back, everyone! I am so excited to kick off the 2016-17 school year in Troy. Here are some of my favorite "back to school" reads:
What's your favorite book to read on the first day of school?
From the same remarkable author (Ame Dyckman) and illustrator (Zachariah OHora) who brought you Wolfie the Bunny, about a "big" bunny sister who learns to appreciate and stand up for her "little" wolf brother, here comes another humorous tale of snap judgements and misunderstandings called Horrible Bear! Who can say they've never taken out their anger and frustration on the wrong person? It happens to the best of us. The lesson in Horrible Bear! is that accidents do happen, and when we react in anger our words can have a profound impact on others. My favorite page is when the very powerful word "sorry" changes everything. Amazing how one little word can cause a frenzy of anger while another can make everything better again!