Friday, August 10, 2012

Ten Favorite Picture Books



 Don't Fidget A Feather! (Turtleback School & Library Binding Edition) by Silverman, Erica published by Turtleback School & Library BindingDon't Fidget a Feather by Erica Silverman, illustrated by S.D. Schindler. How far will Goose and Duck go to win their freeze-in-place contest? Who really wins in the end? Is winning more important than other values?

   Roxaboxen by Alice McLerran, illustrated by Barbara Coonery. Neighborhood friends create a community using sticks, stones and their imaginations. Their town, "Roxaboxen," stays with them as a special memory even when they grow up.

Z is for Moose by Kelly Bingham and Paul O. Zelinsky. Who can't identify with Moose? He is so eager to represent "M" in the alphabet book that when his turn comes and he's not included, he just loses it. I love this character and children do, too!

Roasted Peanuts by Tim Egan. When Sam is picked for the team but his best friend, Jackson, isn't, the two help each other through, and ultimately Jackson finds his own special talent.

  The Barking Mouse by Antonio Sacre, illustrated by Alfredo Aguirre. This story makes children laugh while reinforcing the benefits of a bilingual education. Children who speak two languages love this book.

Else-Marie and Her Seven Little DaddiesElse-Marie's Seven Little Daddies by Pija Lindenbaum. Else-Marie worries about her classmates' perceptions of her non-traditional family when her seven small daddies pick her up at school one day. This is a silly story with a serious message about accepting and enjoying families in any form.

  The Night I Followed the Dog by Nina Laden. This story reads like a hard-boiled detective book for young children. A boy follows his dog at night and witnesses a surprising world where dogs are masters and they can sit on the couch!
 John Henry by Julius Lester, illustrated by Jerry Pinkney. I just love the language. Lester's images are unusual, for example, he describes a mountain "as big as hurt feelings." It's a tall tale and fun, but also serves as a reminder that "dying ain't important...what matters is how well you do your living."

The Colors of Us by Karen Katz. Honey, cinnamon, peanut butter, peaches. When I read this aloud, the children all want to be identified by one of these "colors." This is a celebration of shades of skin that are much more subtle and diverse than simply black, brown, red, yellow or white.
The Day Ocean Came to Visit by Diane Wolkstein. This Nigerian folktale explains (...well, I don't want to give it away if you haven't read it!). The personification is fantastic and children are delighted by the resolution.

And this makes 10!

Friday, December 30, 2011

With a Bow to Margaret Wise Brown

In Margaret Wise Brown's The Important Book, Brown writes that "the most important thing about you is that you are you." What is the most important thing about a blog? Blogs offer a way to communicate with others who share similar interests. This blog will be a place where I share thoughts about children's literature. Many important blogs are well-established and yet, perhaps, this can be another important blog even if only for me, because the important thing about this blog for me is that it is mine and I can develop and share my thoughts here. So the important thing about starting out, Day One, is that I have just begun!