Wednesday, March 9, 2016

I Have Two Homes

I Have Two Homes by Marian De Smet, 2008

This picture book is about a young girl named Nina whose parents are divorced. She explains the way things were before her parents divorced and after. 

"Everything is different now. Everyone is acting strangely...When I am with Dad, I want to be with Mom. I miss my hamster and the climbing tree. When I am with Mom, I want to be with Dad. I miss Cat and my friend from next door."

At the end, she says that even though her parents aren't happy with one another, they are still happy with her and that will never change. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Living with Mom and Living with Dad

Living with Mom and Living with Dad by Melanie Walsh

This is a lift-the-flap book good for elementary age children.

"My mom and dad don't live together anymore. So sometimes I live here, with my mom and my cat in our house with the pink door...

and sometimes I live with my dad in our apartment at the top of the building!"

This little girl explains how things are different at each home and in each of her bedrooms and how she goes different places with each parent but when she had a school play, both parents came.

Monday, March 7, 2016

The Sea of Sleep

The Sea of Sleep by Warren Hanson illustrated by Jim LaMarche, 2010

"The Sea of Sleep is calm tonight. Calm and still. Her quiet ripples tiptoe on the shore. Kissing quickly, Then run away again, Slipping swiftly back across the sand, Carrying away the footprints of the day."

This book will carry you away into dreamland with it's language and illustrations of a seal mama and her pup. I love the feminine portrayal of the moon in the illustrations as well as the rainbow of dolphins. 

"It is the moon. And all the stars. And the darkness, As it wraps us in its loving arms And holds us safe and warm."

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Plant a Pocket of Prairie

Plant a Pocket of Prairie by Phyllis Root, 2014

This richly illustrated picture book explains how to recreate a prairie or prairie-like environment to draw-in birds, insects, amphibians, and other creatures. Prairies once covered around 40 percent of the U.S., but due to farming, industrialization, etc., prairies are now endangered. 

"Plant butterfly weed. Monarch butterflies might lay their eggs on the undersides of leaves. And when those monarch eggs hatch and the larvae turn into hungry butterflies...

Plant rough blazing star. Great spangled fritillaries might show up, too."

At the end of the book, it lists the different types of prairie animals, plants, birds, insects, flowers and grasses so the reader can have a better understanding of what to look for and what to plant. 

This picture book would make a great unit study for science curriculum or a great spring and summertime project. 

I Hear a Pickle

I Hear a Pickle (and Smell, See, Touch, and Taste It, Too!) by Rachel Isadora, 2016

This wonderful book about the 5 senses takes the reader through each sense with adorable illustrations and examples such as:

I Hear: "I hear the seagull. Caw caw!" and "I hear the traffic. Honk! Beep! Honk!"

I Smell: "I smell my big brother's smelly sneakers!" and "I don't smell. I have a cold. Aachoo!"

I See: "I see the airplane up so high" and "I don't see the flower grow!" 

I Touch: "I don't touch the cactus. Prickly!" and "I touch the lollipop. Sticky!"

I Taste: "I taste a jelly sandwich. I'm allergic to peanuts." and "I can't wait to taste the cake...after dinner!"

And to put it all together, at the end it says:

I taste the pickle.It's sour.I smell the pickle.It's spicy.I see the pickle.It's green.I touch the pickle. It's slippery.I hear the pickle...CRUNCH!
I highly recommend this book for preschoolers and early elementary age children.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

The Hundred Dresses

The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes was a 1945 Newbery Honor Award book.

This is a story about a poor, young, Polish-American girl named Wanda. She gets teased by her classmates who think she's lying about having one hundred beautiful dresses at home because she only wears one blue dress to school.

Each day they like to play this "game" where they ask her about her 100 dresses. They tease her, and yet Wanda doesn't defend herself.

Wanda enters an art contest and submits 100 drawings of 100 dresses. When the classmates figure out she wasn't in fact lying, they just didn't understand her dresses were drawings, Wanda and her family had moved out of town. They moved away because of all of the teasing. Now her classmates want to make things right, but it's too late. Wanda eventually writes a letter to the teacher asking her to give some of the drawings to some of her classmates. Wanda actually drew her classmates in the drawings, and when her classmates found out, they treasure their drawings and the lessons they learned about teasing. 

I highly recommend this to young children.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Minerva Louise and the Colorful Eggs

"Minerva Louise and the Colorful Eggs" by Janet Morgan Stoeke

Minerva Louise is so silly, she thinks any human begins she sees are farmers. She also doesn't know what Easter eggs or Easter baskets are.

She saw colorful eggs all over the yard, but they kept disappearing. She didn't notice the children who were gathering the eggs during an egg hunt. She thought an Easter basket was a hat.

"Some hen is forgetting her eggs, said Minerva Louise. And I can't warm all of them by myself. She ran to the barn to tell her friends. 'Look,' she said, 'I'm finding eggs outside, and some of them are so cold they're turning blue.'"

The Littles Series

"The Littles" by John Peterson

This series is about a "little" family who lived inside a house with The Biggs. William T. Little (Will) is the father, 10 year old Tom Little, 8 year old Lucy Little. Will Little was the tallest, and he was only 6 inches tall!

There is a Granny Little and Uncle Pete as well. The littles looked like human beings except they were very tiny and had a long tail like mice.

Cousin Dinky was an adventurous Little. He didn't live with them, but he visited all of the other families like the Littles. The other families (The Fines, The Shorts, The Crums, and The Buttons) lived in other homes. 

The Biggs' don't know about the Little family. The Littles often watched the Biggs' through a one of the light switches on the wall. The Littles ate the leftover food and used some of their items to survive. In return, the Littles did things around the house as favors that the Biggs' didn't even know about like keeping the pipes from freezing in the winter time.

Boys will love this series because the Littles have to use weapons like bows and arrows, slingshots many times to fend off danger from weasels and cats.

In The Littles Take a Trip, the Littles venture out into the woods to meet other tiny people. They met the Specks who lived in the woods. The Specks were fascinated that the Littles lived in a house. They called them House Tinies.

In Order:

1. The Littles
2. The Littles Take a Trip
3. The Littles to the Rescue
4. The Littles Have a Wedding
5. The Littles Give a Party
6. The Littles and the Great Halloween Scare
7. The Littles and the Trash Tinies
8. The Littles Go Exploring
9. The Littles and the Big Storm
10. Littles Go to School
11. The Littles and the Lost Children
12. The Littles and the Terrible Tiny Kid
13. The Littles and Their Amazing New Friend
14. The Littles and Their Friends
The Littles Have a Happy Valentine's Day
Thanksgiving Gues
The Little sDo Their Homework