Monday, August 31, 2009
As a mother of a toddler, I would LOVE to find a book that gives you suggestions for redirecting your child without using the word "no"! I understand that he is working on becoming an independent person, developing his identity, and likes and dislikes which may be different from mine. He is testing his boundaries and seeing what we will allow him to do which is fantastic! But I do not want to him to chant "no, no, no" to me. As a Children's Librarian, I can say that there are a lot of children who pick up that word right away and like to throw it right back into their parents' loving faces.
Mr. Warburton, creator of Codename Kids Next Door, takes the toddler's "no, no, no's" to a whole new level with his first picture book. Noah's mother tells him that it is time to leave, and WHOA, Noah illustrates his negative response in a variety of ways for example via peas, tin cans & string, morse code, head shake, alphabet blocks, and a whole variety of languages. Cute ending sums up this chuckle-inducing book. Obviously not much substance, but a fun and creative (and realistic!) look at the interaction between a toddler and his mother!
Friday, August 28, 2009
After his bath, Farley heads off on an adventure. Baths always make Farley feel hungry you see, so he must be off in search of food. His nose takes him around town and finally back home again, meanwhile enjoying some food, a dip, and helping a boy find his way back home! From the creators of the For Better or Worse comic strip, you will find this story a romping good time, even if you have never heard of Farley before! Share it with a fellow dog lover today!
Thursday, August 27, 2009
I had the need to read something out of my comfort zone; lately I've been into watching cheesy horror movies and reading dark vampire stories. I needed something light! AND I really needed to catch up on my children's fiction reading. Well, you can't get more light that fuzzy bunnies, can you? Emmaline and the Bunny sounded as far from Jason and Michael Myers as I could get, and boy was I right! It was like slipping a vampire some O neg when they were expecting a vial of holy water. Alright, I wasn't expecting a horrible book (I loved Ida B.) that would blow me up, but from the cover I knew it was going to be sticky sweet and I simply haven't been in the mood for sweet mostly.
What I did not expect, was to be pulled into Emmaline's world from the first chapter. She is a very lonely, somewhat messy, girl who lives on Shipshape St. in the town of Neatasapin. She wants to run and play and have fun; and she wants a bunny so she won't be lonely anymore. Katherine Hannigan's use of voice, turns of phrase, and language give this story such a unique quality you can't help reading simply to hear more. Would be a fun and tender read aloud for any age, or give to your older children (or adult friends!) to read on their own.
"Bunny," Emmaline asked, patting the spot beside her, "want to sit here?"
The bunny hopped three times and was with her. It leaned against her leg. It was soft like tickles and bedtime hugs.
"Bunny," said Emmaline, "with you I am not lonely."
The bunny wiggled it's white tail, "No More Only."
"Hoppadinglelaladee," Emmaline told it. And all the best words together couldn't hold the happiness.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
I think the main concerns my daughter faced on her first day of school had little to do with meeting a new teacher or having different kids to play with; the cause of frustration and despair for her stemmed from the fact that she was facing a total change in her life – her routine was being completely altered and she didn’t feel as if she had any control.
There are a multitude of books dealing with facing the first day of school, each addressing various areas of concern from jitters to fear, and joy and reassurance. Here is a smattering of my favorite school friends that may just lend your child a bit of comfort:
My list starts off with basically any book by Rosemary Wells or Kevin Henkes. Both authors have many books featuring young ones in school situations from carrying a purple plastic purse to school everyday to a boy in his kindergarten class facing new learning experiences every day. Check out both authors and at your local library and meet Sheila Rae the Brave, Timothy, Chrysanthemum and more!
A Porcupine Named Fluffy by Helen Lester
Helen Lester has a knack of taking difficult situations and making them funny and acceptable. Children can relate to her unique characters and the predicaments they get themselves into. In this story, there is a porcupine named Fluffy who just doesn't understand why he was given that name. He tries everything he can think of, including covering himself with marshmallows to make him look more "fluffy", but he just isn't. Then Fluffy meets a rhinoceros and these two, very different fellows, become the best of friends who share a common bond. A fun story to share that will give you all the giggles!
Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes
Wemberly is a worrier. She worries about everything - big things, small things, even fun things like playgrounds. When it came time for Wemberly to start school, she worried even more. Wemberly's teacher introduces her to another child in her class who was afraid, just like Wemberly and before you know it, the girls were having fun playing together. Sweet, simple story addressing real fears that child face while offering reassurance that everything will be alright.
Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon [Modern Gem] by Patty Lovell
Molly Lou Melon is short and clumsy with buck teeth and has a voice that sounds like a bullfrog being squeezed by a boa constrictor, but she doesn't mind. Her grandmother taught her to face the world just as you are. Molly has to begin 1st grade in a new school and immediately a bully begins to pick on her. With her grandmother's advice, she faces the bully and the world head on. I absolutely love this book and have used it with K thru 2nd graders. They all crack up at her big ole grin - and you will too.
Butterflies in My Stomach and Other School Hazards by Serge Bloch
Just about everyone has felt as if butterflies were in their stomach, especially on the first day of school. This tidy little book explores one boy's first day with a string of colorful idioms. Great read-a-loud and a nice way to get a laugh as well as learn a bit about the wonderfully complex English language!
How Do Dinosaurs Go To School? by Jane Yolen
The team of Jane Yolen and Mark Teague have brough us many wonderful "How Do Dinosaurs" tales and this is no exception. The light, rythmic, rhyming text coupled with the bright, gorgeous illustrations create a fun romp through school through the eyes of dinosaurs and humans alike. A great ice-breaker to help your child open up and talk about their expectations concerning the first day of school.
The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn
Chester Raccoon does not want to go to school. He wants to stay home with his mom and play with his friends. So begins this tender story of a young raccoon starting school and the wonderful secret his mother shares with him. A sweet and tender book for children. Parents might also find comfort in the story when they see their loved ones off on that first day.
Froggy Goes to School by Jonathan London
This is right up there with The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn as one of my favorite back to school books. Froggy is irresistible and sure to relieve first day jitters with grins and giggles.
Many other books are available to help prepare little ones for their first day of school. Visit your local library and check with your librarian!