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This is a simple book about figurines sitting on a windowsill, each waiting for things to happen outside. There's little text and soft, basic images but it's an adorable tale. In Waiting
, the windowsill proves to be a perfect stage for the various animals and their tale. Good for young children 3-8.
This picture book shows Santa before we all knew him, as a baby. Just like everyone, Santa was a kid once and this cute book has Santa showing early preferences for the color red, reindeer (aka hamsters), giving things away, cooler temperatures, soot etc. Toward the end of the book, Santa's transition from ordinary life to the North Pole is a bit abrupt (and seems to lack a scene or two). However, Santa's parents realize this is the perfect job for Santa so all is well. The illustrations by Genevieve Godbout are soft and retro which fits nicely with the nostalgic theme of the book.
This is a cute book about a little girl named Ally who loves dinosaurs and wants to be one. For the first day of school Ally shows up as her dinosaur-self, roaring and stomping. The illustrations show her dinosaur outline, scales and tail colored in pink. At first, none of her classmates want to hang out with a dinosaur like her. Instead, a group of girls want to be princesses and a boy dreams of outer space. Feeling left out, she's alone at lunch until some other children show up to sit with her. One girl wants to be a dragon, a boy wants to be a lion and the other boy just loves his new lunchbox. They make fast friends and Ally is made to feel part of the class. All the children are depicted with their fantasy characters outlining them in crayon. At the end, Ally's class takes a trip to the library where she discovers that there's more characters she can be.
A family of squirrels eagerly await the arrival of Momo, their cousin who's a flying squirrel. Momo is not what they expected, however. He dresses funny, is shy and has odd ideas about fun activities. When Momo overhears his cousins complain about him, he cries and starts to pack for home. Afterward, they try to have fun Momo's way and the rest of the visit goes well. So well in fact, that they are left counting the days until Momo's return. The illustrations from the book are adorable: primitive and bold with funny details (the family's tree house is charming). This book is fun, yet has a lesson in compromise. For those who enjoy his style, Zachariah Ohora illustrated No Fits, Nilson
! and Wolfie the Bunny
This book is a great introduction to the style of a comic book. It's not a comic book, but there are elements that make it similar. There are very few words, and you have to really look at the illustrations to figure out what it going on, but it should be easy for kids as young as 3 to follow along. Wordless books, or nearly wordless, in this case, are fantastic for fostering discussion, imagination and early literacy. The Monkey and The Bee is also funny and kids will enjoy it.
I Yam a Donkey by CeCe Bell
Whose Shoe by Eve Bunting
Betty Goes Bananas by Steve Antony
A fun version of Humans of New York for young kids. This book highlights all kinds of children and has an empowering message about all of the thinks little humans can do.
One World, Obe Day by Barbara Kerley
To Be a Kid by Maya Ajmera
Shoe Shoes Shoes by Ann Morris
This is the second book featuring the bear (Boom), a snail (Snot) and a bird (Twitty). Once again, the trio have differing agendas. The three animals are all packed to go on an outing, but none of them are packed for the same place. Boom wants to go splash in the water, Twitty wants to go hike in the mountains and Snot could go anywhere but all he has is snacks. Of course, it's up to the one with snacks to solve the dilemma. The illustrations by Renata Liwska are fuzzy, soft and simple and match the spare text. A good introduction to compromise for younger kids.
Peace is an Offering is a short but nicely illustrated book about peace and kindness. It gives many examples of peace, all of which kids can relate to. There is a lot of detail in the illustrations, so parents can expand on each page and talk about the various topics.
One Family by George Shannon
Whoever You Are by Mem Fox
Old Turtle by Douglas Wood
Pine and the Winter Sparrow is a retelling of a traditional Native American tale. In the book a sparrow with a broken wing seeks shelter during the winter. All of the trees refuse him, except for Pine. As a reward the pine tree becomes the only tree to not lose her leaves in the winter. This is a nice book that teaches kindness, as well as a little bit about the rhythms of the seasons.
The Magic Boat by Demi
A Grain of Rice by Helena Clare Pittman
Zomo the Rabbitt by Gerald McDermott
This is a very sweet, whimsical book that will delight kids. It's also a sweet book about sisters and the relationship between them. The little sister has trouble sleeping, so the big sister comes up with increasingly outlandish suggestions to dream about. The illustrations are cute and colorful.
Rude Cakes by Rowboat Watkins
Wild by Emily Hughes
Home by Carson Ellis
This cute, whimsically illustrated children's book has a message for kids with unconventional talents. Rose is artistic, but her teacher Mrs. Benson only seems to notice her messiness and daydreaming. When desk inspection day comes, Rose has so much anxiety she gets a tummy ache. In the end, Rose has her chance to shine when the class makes cards for another teacher. Mrs. Benson looks past her messiness and praises Rose's card, even allowing her to make her own unique star on the backboard.
This is an amusing book about parents who try to keep their kids in their dull world. The Dullards stare at blank tv's, watch paint dry and eat plain ice cream with no cones. Little exciting intrusions keep happening to the Dullards and they're forced to move their children, Blanda, Borely and Little Dud to another location. Of course, excitement follows them: one room has bright yellow floral walls and the kids are caught doing acrobatics outside. To avoid further excitement, the Dullards move back to their old town. At the end of the book, Mr and Mrs. Dullard are blissfully unaware that their kids have joined up with the circus that's visiting town. The illustrations are funny and show the extent of the family's dullness with their grey, plain outfits, blank walls and "pragmatic moving container".
This poetic book about a rabbit and his owl friend who take to the roads on a bicycle is gorgeously illustrated. The watercolors are vivid and creatively used. Their journey flows along from page to page, over rivers and through woods, cities and mountainous terrain. They hitch along with bus-riding friends until they part ways and home is once again in sight.
Snuggleford Cuddlebun, the sleepy sloth protagonist wants to go the the Snoozefest at the Nuzzledome. She and other good sleepers are taken by bus to the Nuzzledome, carrying all their blankets, pillows and lovies. At the Nuzzledome there's a pj parade, food booths, posters and t-shirts for sale. Various animals play quiet sleepy music on stage and Snuggleford sleeps in her hammock only to wake up and realize the festival is over. That's okay with Snuggleford since she's a sloth, but she can't wait until next year's festival. The colorful, pattern-y illustrations are adorable with all the different animals snuggling in their blankies. A cute, kiddie version of festival-going and naptime.
This book is basically an illustrated poem about ways to celebrate or express peace and walk away from a fight. The rhyming is relatively simple yet touching and the illustrations are adorably sweet.
"Peace is a joining not a pulling apart.
It's the courage to bear a wounded heart.....
Sing a quiet song.
Catch a falling star.
May peace walk beside you
Wherever you are."
Peace is an Offering has a classic, timeless quality which will help children see ways to be a friend and enjoy the quiet strength of peace.
"Julia, Child" is subtly deceptive. Though it has Julia Child's name in the title, it isn't a picture book biography of Julia as a child. The preface states that the book was inspired by, but not about Julia's childhood. However, the main character does
love to cook. Julia and her friend Simca shop, take classes and whip up meals. They begin to notice that adults are too busy to savor food and life. So they decide to make some meals for them. The first foray turns out badly, since most adults "don't have the proper ingredients" and start fighting over the food. Julia and Simca's next effort fixes that: they make "smaller portions....just enough to feed the sensible children from whom these senseless grown-ups grew." This dinner party does the trick; the adults have a wonderful time and are more generous. In a nod to the other Julia, the girls write a book, "Mastering the Art of Childhood" for grownups. Overall, the book has sweet vintage illustrations and the message is a positive one, though more understandable for older kids.
A little girl wants a pet, but her mother says she can only get a pet that doesn't need to be "walked, bathed or fed." After a visit to the library, she picks out the perfect pet from a book: a sloth. She orders one through the mail and Sparky as she calls him, lives up to his reputation as a lay about. The girl is determined to interact with him, but the only game he plays successfully is Statue. She tries one last time to impress her friend by putting on a show of sloth pet tricks. Once again, Sparky refuses to do anything. In the end, she learns to appreciate the sloth's slow companionship. This is a quiet book (as one might expect of a sloth), but the illustrations are cute and the underlying message of appreciating the low-key is a nice one. Winner of the Charlotte Zolotow award.
Sidewalk Flowers is a wordless picture book that manages to convey a lot with just pictures. A girl takes a walk with her father through the city and collects flowers. It's a simple plot line, but there's little episodes along the way where the girl interacts with people, animals and her flowers. The images are done primarily in black shades of ink and watercolor with spots of color for emphasis. The girl throughout is wearing a red jacket and bits of nature are painted with color also. Toward the end, the color is much more prevalent and the illustrations spread across the page. Overall, this is a sweet and gorgeously done children's book.
Solve the riddles to find the runaway gingerbread men in this funny and magical cookie hunt!
Marshall knows one thing for sure, despite what all the stories say: Gingerbread men cannot run. Cookies are for eating, and he can't wait to eat his
after spending all morning baking them with his class. But when it's time to take the gingerbread men out of the oven . . . they're gone! Now, to find those rogue cookies, Marshall and his class have to solve a series of rhyming clues. And Marshall just might have to rethink his stance on magic. Catch That Cookie!
is an imaginative mystery, deliciously illustrated by Caldecott Medal winner David Small. It's sure to inspire a new classroom tradition . . . and maybe even a few new believers!
The Eleventh Hour
Wolfie the Bunny
The Gingerbread Bear
The Gingerbread Boy
Iggy Peck is a boy who's obsessed with designing and creating structures. He's shown making buildings out of anything that he can get his hands on: dirt, fruit, pancakes, modeling clay etc. Until one day his teacher has had enough and bans Iggy from mentioning anything about architecture. The class then goes on a picnic field trip to a little island. The bridge collapses and traps them on the island. Iggy comes to the rescue, organizes the class in building a new bridge from found objects. Because Iggy saved the day he's allowed from then on to give the class lectures on architecture. The illustrations by David Roberts are fun with each child having a unique look and the structures that Iggy builds are playful. The rhyming text has a fun, bouncy quality that will keep kids interest in a topic that could otherwise be a bit dry.
This is a cute book centering around a little boy who's told his parents are expecting a baby. In their morning rush, the parents don't have time to explain further. Then the boy spends the day asking his neighbor, teacher, grandpa and mailman "Where do babies come from?" Each person has a different answer and by the end of the day he's truly confused. All is cleared up by his parents at the conclusion of the book (with some factual information on another page). The illustrations by Sophie Blackall are sweet, subtle and just right for the topic.
Felipe the Flamingo
This is a darling, coming-of-age story illustrated with great watercolor prints of the characters in the story. Felipe has not grown as his parents expected. His neck is still stiff so it is hard for him to eat on his own, and he is still very white, not pink like his parents and the other flamingos in their group. His parents are leaders of the group and need to fly with the other flamingos to show them the way to the next feeding area. So little Felipe stays behind with Eleanor Egret to watch over him. Other animals and a little human girl in a kayak all start to help Felipe with his problems. A couple of friends bring him lots of shrimp, a turtle who once had a stiff neck comes over to try a new neck stretching method, and butterflies teach some of their tricks for flying. Felipe starts to change little by little. He is enjoying all his newfound friends; everyone is helping him so much. His neck feels better and his tummy is full. Felipe can even tuck his head under his wing and has a few successes with flying attempts. Then the big day arrives and he realizes that the feathers that he is preening are PINK, PINK, PINK.
A 2014 Caldecott Honor Book
In this innovative wordless picture book with interactive flaps, Flora and her graceful flamingo friend explore the trials and joys of friendship through an elaborate synchronized dance. With a twist, a turn, and even a flop, these unlikely friends learn at last how to dance together in perfect harmony. Full of humor and heart, this stunning performance (and splashy ending!) will have readers clapping for more!
Henri's Scissors is another great introductory artist biography for kids. The beginning of the book introduces Matisse, but focuses mostly on his later years when he was confined to a bed and wheelchair. It was at that time that Matisse discovered a new way to express himself through shape and color by using scissors. Jeanette Winter's art captures Matisse and his art with her painting that shows the large shapes and colors Matisse used. At the end is a short author's note with a reference and a quote. Children as young as 4 or 5 would appreciate this book, especially if they love art.
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How to Draw a Dragon is a fun, rhyming book that lists all the aspects of a dragon: pointed spines, claws, wings, teeth and scales. Various children "drag" their dragons to their yard and attempt to draw these huge, imposing creatures while watching out for fiery breath and sharp claws.The illustrations are done in a child-like, mixed media style that echoes the children's perspective in the text. A cute book for the artistic dragon-lover in your family.