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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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OCTOBER (2)

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

Good Night, Bat! Good Morning, Squirrel! by Paul Meisel. Boyds Mills Press / Highlights, 2016

When Bat loses his home, he has a hard time finding a new one. One animal after another turns him away, but he finally finds the perfect spot inside a leafy nest up a tree. Squirrel’s already there, but she’s dozing and so Bat deposits the bugs he’s gathered on the bed and happily finds a twig to hang from and goes to sleep. Squirrel is startled and annoyed when she discovers the uninvited guest in the morning and writes an emphatic note telling Bat to leave. (“Dear Bat, Bug off! Sincerely, Squirrel”). When Bat finds the note he understands it to mean that Squirrel didn’t like the insects on her bed, so he politely moves them to a corner of the nest. That begins a series of misunderstandings, all conveyed through correspondence, with Squirrel telling Bat to leave, and Bat, ever the optimist, consistently misinterpreting her messages. Eventually Squirrel realizes that she’s come to appreciate the ever-cheery Bat, while Bat knows he’d be lonely without Squirrel, and so the duo agrees to be roommates. Appealing illustrations sweeten this charming comedy of errors featuring an odd couple of the animal world. ©2017 Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: The poem “Fall of the Year”
  • Talk: About how words can have different meanings.
  • Sing: Sing “Skidamarink a Dink a Dink”
  • Write: A note to a friend.
  • Play: Try some leaf rubbings by laying paper over leaves and coloring the paper with crayons
  • Math or Science: Talk about seasons. What season do you think this is? Why do you think that?

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OCTOBER (1)

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

My Heart Fills with Happiness by Monique Gray Smith.  Illustrated by Julie Flett. Orca, 2016

“My heart fills with happiness when … ” A comforting board book offers young children the opportunity for reflection, and for affirmation, too. Moments of happiness tucked into each and every day celebrated here include time with family (“I see the face of someone I love”), self-expression (“I sing”), and the natural world (“I walk barefoot in the grass”). Author Monique Gray Smith (Cree/Lakota) has written a narrative lovingly grounded in First/Native Nations culture, community, and traditions (“I smell bannock in the oven … I drum”). Illustrator Julie Flett (Cree/Métis) invites children into the book’s warm embrace with intimate and expressive gouache and digital collage illustrations of First/Native Nations children, or children and adults together in a book that invites all children to consider, “What fills YOUR heart with happiness?” ©2016 Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: A book that makes you happy.
  • Talk: What fills your heart with happiness?
  • Sing: “You Are My Sunshine” & “If You’re Happy and You Know It” Use the book to make some new verses. For example, “If you’re happy and you know it, play your drum”.
  • Write: Draw a picture of what makes you happy/or what your face looks like when you’re happy.
  • Play: Act out actions on each page. Make up your own actions to go along – pretend to play the guitar.
  • Math or Science: Talk about what the ingredients – what is used to make — bannock. Have them guess first. And if you can, find some to try?

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SEPTEMBER (2)

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

Rudas: Niño’s Horrendous Hermanitas by Yuyi Morales. A Neal Porter Book / Roaring Brook Press, 2016

Niño’s back and this time he’s completely upstaged by las hermanitas—the lucha queens. In lucha libre there are two kinds of wrestlers—the Técnicos, those who play by the rules, and the Rudos, those who don’t. The toddler twins are definitely in the second category. First introduced at the end of the popular Niño Wrestles the World when they awakened from their nap, here the duo is wide awake and running the show. The genius here is that all the Rudas’ tactics are typical toddler behaviors. They defeat El Extraterrestre with the Poopy Bomb Blowout, and when the Olmec Head steps in to vanquish them with a diaper change, they go for the famous Nappy Freedom Break. They teethe on El Chamuco’s tail and then point to the Guanajuato Mummy as the culprit and, most hilariously, grab two of La Llorona’s children, saying “Gimme!” and “¡Mio!” In the end, only Niño can defeat them by employing a classic older sibling move—deflection. As with the first book, there is a playful blend of Spanish and English, and plenty to look at in the comic-style illustrations. (Ages 3–6)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: Some of the Spanish words from the book. What do these Spanish words mean. Talk about how people use different languages.
  • Talk: About what games you play with your brothers or sisters or friends. What do you like to pretend?
  • Sing: Make an instrument and then sing a song with it.
  • Write: Talk about the shape and style of speech bubbles and how the arrows point to which character is speaking. Have kids draw a character and a speech bubble with their own fun words.
  • Play: Play some classic “athletic” songs (The Final Countdown, Chariots of Fire, We Will Rock You, We are the Champions, etc.) and practice movements- marching, running in place, etc.
  • Math or Science: What kind of tools do the sisters use? How are they used? What tools do you use every day?

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SEPTEMBER (1)

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

We Sang You Home by Richard Van Camp. Illustrated by Julie Flett. Orca, 2016

“ We sang you from a wish / We sang you from a prayer / We sang you home / and you sang back … ” The words in this board book are simple and yet sophisticated in their meaning as they communicate the unconditional love parents feel for their child. It’s as comforting as a lullaby, and the elegant illustrations by Cree/Métis artist Julie Flett complement Richard Van Camp’s text perfectly. They initially show a mom and dad sitting outside, singing up to the sky. Next they appear with a tiny baby in a carrier, watching a flock of birds move across the sky. Succeeding pages show the baby growing just a bit older until he or she is crawling. The final wordless page shows the parents in the same outdoor setting as the first page, this time the baby with them as they sing again to the sky. (Ages birth–2)  © Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Try these early literacy activities with children:

  • Read: The poem “To a Child” and listen to the accompanying song from CD.
  • Talk: About your first day at home or your first day with your family. Do you remember anything? What does your family remember?
  • Sing: What songs do you sing with your family? When do you sing them? Who do you sing them with? Sing one of your family songs.
  • Write: Together write a love “note” to each other.
  • Play: Learn American Sign Language signs for “family,” “love,” “together,” and “play.”
  • Math or Science: How many different animals can you find? Count them. Talk about daytime and nighttime. How can you tell the difference from picture to picture?

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