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MARCH (2)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | March - (Comments Off on MARCH (2))

Rescue Squad No. 9 by Mike Austin. Random House, 2016

“Mayday! Mayday! Mayday!” The distress call launches Rescue Squad No. 9 into action. A boat and helicopter and their team of rescue workers speed to the aid of a young sailor and her dog when a storm strands them on rocks. Few words are needed in this action-filled story told primarily through the illustrations. Bright colors, bold figures, and skillfully crafted page composition lend movement and a sense of urgency to this successful rescue at sea. (Ages 2–6)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: As you read, explore print awareness. Ask the children how they know which direction the pages should go.
  • Talk: About how loud noises can be scary, but remind children that it means people are helping others. Encourage them to look for helpers.
  • Sing: A song about the weather, the ocean or helpers.
  • Write: Trace the safety gear on the end papers of the book.
  • Play: Reenact the story. Use toy boats or other objects you can pretend are boats.
  • Math or Science: Discuss water science and safety. Look at the information in the back of the book.

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MARCH (1)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | March - (Comments Off on MARCH (1))

Babies Don’t Walk, They Ride! Kathy Henderson. Illustrated by Lauren Tobia. U.S. edition: Templar Books / Candlewick Press, 2016

Babies don’t just ride; they glide, stroll, roll, and more in a pleasing picture book featuring a lively cast of babies and the adults in their lives moving across the day. The rhyming text is set against vibrant, engaging detailed mixed- media illustrations that show the energy and inclusion of a multicultural city neighborhood and the many warm ways adults engage with babies in a story that ends with the quiet dark. There are many diverse babies and families to notice and follow throughout the book. The principle family appears white. (Ages 1–4)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: When you’re out and about, at the places like we see in the story, what words can you find?
  • Talk: Talk about what other things have wheels. Find things around you that can roll.
  • Sing: The Wheels on the Bus.
  • Write: Draw a picture of what you see when you’re out and about.
  • Play: Play with a baby doll/stuffed animal- take it for a walk or a ride.
  • Math or Science: On each page, count the babies, count windows, and count the wheels.

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FEBRUARY (2)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | February - (Comments Off on FEBRUARY (2))

Looking for Bongo by Eric Velasquez. Holiday House, 2016

A small, pajama-clad boy is on a morning hunt at home for Bongo. “Dónde está Bongo?” He asks Wela, his grandmother; Gato the cat; Daisy the dog; and his dad. He tries to ask his mom, but she’s busy. Even the delivery man at the door is questioned. No one knows where Bongo is. The boy finally finds Bongo, a small brown-and-white stuffed animal dog, peeking out from behind a set of bongo drums. “Tonight I will hold on to Bongo so he won’t run away.” It turns out Bongo isn’t on the run, but someone else is in this picture book with an ending that is surely a surprise to the boy and may be to child readers and listeners, although others may have noticed a certain look on the guilty party’s face earlier in the story. The illustrations in this picture book featuring an Afro- Latino family provide a wonderful sense of home and warmth and morning routine. (Ages 3–6)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: In the book, what do you think Bongo is? Can you find clues in the pictures or words that help you guess what Bongo is?
  • Talk: Do you have a favorite stuffed animal? What kind of animal is it? How did you get it? What do you call it? What can you do with a stuffed animal that you can’t do with a live animal?
  • Sing:  “Who Stole the Cookies From the Cookie Jar?”
  • Write: Draw a picture of your family. Who is in your family?
  • Play: Hide a toy and work together to find it.
  • Math or Science: Recreate the booby trap at the end of the book. Or, try making your own pretend way to catch someone.

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FEBRUARY (1)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | February - (Comments Off on FEBRUARY (1))

Old Dog Baby Baby by Julie Fogliano. Illustrated by Chris Raschka. A Neal Porter Book / Roaring Brook Press, 2016

A family’s old dog is perfectly content to spend the day snoozing but “here comes baby baby crawling across the kitchen floor.” The dog has no choice but to wake up. He seems to enjoy the attentions of the baby, even the poking and paw-squeezing, but before long both dog and baby are stretched out together on the kitchen floor asleep. The gentle rhythmic text uses just a few words to show the loving relationship between the two, and the watercolor illustrations are comfortingly soft-edged, showing a rotund blonde baby. The rest of the family plays a minimal role but, when shown, includes two moms. (Ages 2–4)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: “The Kitten’s” Dream” from Goodnight Songs
  • Talk: About pets. Do you have any pets in your family? What is your favorite kind of pet?
  • Sing: “BINGO” or other dog song
  • Write: Draw a picture of your dream pet.
  • Play: Act out how to approach an animal. How would you approach a family pet? An animal or pet that is new to you? Who should you ask for permission to approach a pet?
  • Math or Science: Talk about life cycles and animal names. How are puppies different from dogs, kittens different from cats.

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JANUARY (3)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | January - (Comments Off on JANUARY (3))

1 Big Salad: A Delicious Counting Book by Juana Medina. Viking, 2016

A playful concept book imagines salad ingredients as animals as it counts from one to ten: one avocado deer, two radish mice, three pepper monkeys, four carrot horses, etc. Medina uses photographs of actual vegetables set against a stark white background, and then adds black ink lines to embellish each vegetable in order to bring out the animal—nose, ears, and feet added to the radish mice, for example. All the animals mixed together add up to one big delicious salad, shown in a photograph of the salad in a big wooden bowl with two inked hands and arms holding it up. Even those who can already count to ten will enjoy seeing the vegetables transformed into appealing animals. (Ages 2–5)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: “Winter Adventure” in Goodnight Songs
  • Talk: About trying new foods. Try some of the foods in the book that are new to you.
  • Sing:  “Apples and Bananas” by Rafi. Look for other versions of the song online or at the library.
  • Write: Trace numbers with your fingers. Count with your fingers. Or, write a grocery list together
  • Play: Provide kids with printed out pictures or magazine pictures. Have kids add their own drawing to make an animal. Or, make faces with cut up pieces of fruit – blueberry eyes, orange slice mouth.
  • Math or Science: Make the salad and salad dressing in the book or make a recipe of your own. Talk about measurements. How much of each ingredient do you use for the recipe?

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JANUARY (2)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | January - (Comments Off on JANUARY (2))

Marta! Big & Small by Jen Arena. Illustrated by Angela Dominguez. Roaring Brook Press, 2016

“To a lion, Marta is tranquila. Quiet, very quiet. / To a rabbit, Marta is ruidosa. Loud, very loud.” The same textual pattern is used on each two-page spread, cleverly describing an active little girl’s qualities in terms of comparisons and opposites. Spanish adjectives are seamlessly incorporated into the text and for each one, the English word follows as an echo. When all of Marta’s qualities are reiterated at story’s end, the animal names appear in Spanish, easily decipherable from the clear picture clues. The appealing illustrations capture Marta’s spirited nature and underscore the girl-power theme of the book, which ends with Marta described as “clever, very clever, like una niña.” (Ages 2–5)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: Pick out the Spanish words in the book. Practice saying them together. Look at the included glossary.
  • Talk: Revisit the idea of opposites. Introduce the idea of comparatives ­such as “bigger” or “smaller”. Compare your child to things in the room. Ask: What are bigger than? What are you smaller than?
  • Sing: “This is Big, Big, Big”. If you don’t know it, find it on the Jbrary Youtube channel.
  • Write: Different sizes of letters, shapes, or squiggles.
  • Play: Pretend to be the different animals in the book.
  • Math or Science: Scavenger hunt – find something big. Find something small. Find something bigger or smaller than the objects you found.

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JANUARY (1)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | January - (Comments Off on JANUARY (1))

Music Is … by Brandon Stosuy. Illustrated by Amy Martin. Little Simon, 2016

This purposefully inclusive board book celebrates music as something for everyone. The illustrations show distinctive, individual people of color with a range of ages and body types. There are women playing electric guitars and a man playing a harp, a little girl with two men—presumably her dads—and so on. Some of the concepts may be a bit advanced for a typical board book audience (Lo-fi vs. Hi-fi; “fuzzy” guitars), but definitions of the music terms are provided on the final page, a welcome element for any adult who may be unsure of something’s meaning. (Ages 1–3)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: “Snowfall” from Goodnight Songs and listen to the song on the accompanying CD.
  • Talk About opposites.
  • Sing: Pick a song. Sing it fast. Sing it slow. Sing it loudly and quietly.
  • Write: Listen to music and draw a picture of what you hear using colors and shapes.
  • Play: Dance to your favorite music.
  • Math or Science: Talk about how you can make music with your mouth or your hands. What other ways can you make music with your body?

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DECEMBER (2)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | December - (Comments Off on DECEMBER (2))

First Snow by Bomi Park. U.S. edition: Chronicle, 2016

A small girl wakes up in the night to the soft sound of falling snow. “Pit, pit pit against the window. Glistening, floating in the night.” She puts on warm clothes, walks outside, and begins rolling the snow into a ball. With her puppy following, she rolls the snowball out the yard, into the street, and through the darkened town. A speedy train passes as she goes “Fast Fast Fast.” Through a fallow field, through a friendly nighttime woods full of animals. Finally, she is moving “Slow Slow Slow” with her huge ball of snow, passing from the night into a bright, snow-white field full of children who are also rolling huge snowballs and making … snow figures! A magical, dreamlike story is told through a spare, lyrical text and stunning, textured, mostly black-and-white illustrations that are understated and exceptional. The art, which begins with nighttime black dominating has occasional, subtle accents of other colors, and whimsical punctuations of bright red for the scarves, hats and mittens on children and snow people. ©2016 Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: The poem, “Cherry Tree.” Read another book that involves prepositions or placement of objects such as Rosie’s Walk.
  • Talk: About how to make a snowman. What other things do you make in the snow? Snow angels? Snow castles?
  • Sing: Going on a Bear Hunt – talk about prepositions.
  • Write: Your name in the snow or in your own “snow” using sand.
  • Play: Pretend to roll a snowball.
  • Math or Science: Bring a snowball inside let it melt in a bowl or cup. Talk about how it turns to water. How long does it take the snowball to melt? Is it a different size? Shape?

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DECEMBER (1)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | December - (Comments Off on DECEMBER (1))

Tickle My Ears by Jörg Mühle.  Translated from the German by Catherine Chidgey. U.S. edition: Gecko Press, 2016

In this interactive board book, little white rabbit is poised to react to actions from young readers and listeners, as directed by the narrative voice. Tap him on the shoulder [turn the page] and he turns around. Clap your hands [turn the page] and he’ll put on his pajamas. Eventually the rabbit is tucked into bed. He needs only a good-night kiss and switching off the light. A darkened, final double-page spread shows the little bunny sleeping peacefully. A clever, child- friendly book invites involvement in a bedtime story. (Ages 18 months–3)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: The poem, “Advice to Bunnies”
  • Talk: What do you do to get ready for bed?
  • Sing: “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” or sing a family lullaby together.
  • Write: Have a grown-up rub your back and trace shapes or letters on your back. Can you guess which shapes and letters they are?
  • Play: Act out the book’s motions and actions while someone reads the book. Bring favorite toy/blanket to story time.
  • Math or Science: Talk about textures. What do you cuddle with at night? Is it hard or soft, smooth or rough?

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NOVEMBER (3)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | November - (Comments Off on NOVEMBER (3))

Thunder Boy Jr. by Sherman Alexie. Illustrated by Yuyi Morales.  Little, Brown, 2016

Thunder Boy Smith Jr. hates his name. Because his father is also Thunder Boy Smith, Thunder Boy Jr. is nicknamed Little Thunder, which sounds to him “like a burp or a fart.” He wants his own name, one based on his talents, like learning to ride a bike when he was three (Gravity’s Best Friend); or his interests, such as garage sales (Old Toys Are Awesome), or powwow dancing (Drums, Drums, and More Drums!); or his future dreams of traveling the world (Full of Wonder). “I love my dad but I want to be mostly myself.” It turns out his dad understands, announcing one day that it’s time for Thunder Boy Jr. to get a new name: Lightning! “My dad and I will light up the sky.” A story the author has stated is based on his own Spokane heritage is full of warmth and good-hearted humor. Lively, playful illustrations represent both Thunder Boy and the world of his imagination. Dialogue bubbles are used throughout, while Thunder Boy’s little sister, Lillian, mentioned once in the text, has a key role in the visual narrative. Honor Book, 2017 Charlotte Zolotow Award ©2017 Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: Go to the library and ask your librarian about other books on thunder and lightning storms.
  • Talk: Ask your family what your name means. Are you named after anyone in your family? Do you have a middle name? What does your last name mean?
  • Sing: Make rain/a thunderstorm using hands- start with rubbing hands quietly, then snap, then tap on legs, then clapping.
  • Write: Practice writing your name.
  • Play: Draw a picture of yourself or act out doing something you love to do
  • Math or Science: Talk about differences and similarities between lightning and thunder. Which one is audible and which one is visual? What are some connections between thunder and lightning?

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NOVEMBER (2)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | November - (Comments Off on NOVEMBER (2))

Sleep Tight Farm: A Farm Prepares for Winter by Eugenie Doyle. Illustrated by Becca Stadtlander. Chronicle, 2016

The transformation from autumn to winter on a small farm means “putting the farm to bed.” Strawberry plants must be covered with straw, the autumn harvest finished, oats and rye planted to replenish the fields. “Good night, fields, peaceful and still.” Brush is burned, wood is cut and stacked, hay bales placed as a windbreak for the hives of bees. “Good night, bees, sheltered and safe.” The repeated “good night” refrain follows a detailed accounting of many tasks that also give a sense of the abundant harvests that came before. The work, shared by every member of the farm family—mother, father, girl, boy—is realistically yet refreshingly non-gender-stereotyped. This contemporary story is set against warm, detailed folk-art illustrations that have a nostalgic, almost idyllic feel. Everything looks cozy, which seems appropriate for a good-night story. (Ages 3–7)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: “Big Tractor” by Nathan Clement
  • Talk: About the vegetables and fruits grown on the farm. What does the family in the book do to ready the farm for winter? What do you does your family do to get ready for winter?
  • Sing: “Farmer in the Dell”
  • Write: Use vegetables in paint or ink to make vegetable stamp prints.
  • Play: Use play materials to build your own farm. Pretend to tuck the farm in for winter.
  • Math or Science: Find all the vegetables that are orange/red/green. Find all the animals.

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NOVEMBER (1)

May 16th, 2017 | Posted by etownsend in Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers | 2017-2018 | 2017-2018 Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers | November - (Comments Off on NOVEMBER (1))

Owl Sees Owl by Laura Godwin. Illustrated by Rob Dunlavey. Schwartz & Wade, 2016

A little owl leaves his mama, brother, and sister sleeping in their nest and ventures out one night on his own. The entire story is told with just four words per page. “Stars Twinkle Mice Scamper” is accompanied by luminous illustrations that track the owl’s journey, conveying the quiet wonder of the moonlit night. When the owl lands on a log over a body of water, he looks down and sees his own reflection. This is the only time the four-word pattern is broken in order to heighten the dramatic moment: “Owl / Sees Owl.” The little owl then returns home, his journey described with words from the previous pages in reverse: “Scamper Mice Twinkle Stars,” for example, and, finally, “Sister Brother Mama Home” in a book that is lovely both visually and textually. (Ages 2–4)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: The poem “Quiet in the Wilderness”
  • Talk: About the colors, animals, and nature that the children see in the pictures (for babies and toddlers); talk about the mirror image of the poem in the book (for preschoolers)
  • Sing: Find the song “Nocturnal” by Billy Jonas at your library or online and sing along.
  • Write: Your name and think of words of things you like that start with each letter with the help of a grown-up.
  • Play: Have a mirror for kids to see themselves like Owl. Make expressions. Pretend to be an owl.
  • Math or Science: Talk about nocturnal animals. What animals would you see at night in the woods?

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