…storytime, books, and ideas

Posts tagged ‘vocabulary’

From the Picture Book Pile…

A big pile of books to share this time! Here we go…

Dad and the Dinosaur by Gennifer Choldenko, illustrated by Dan Santat.Dad and the Dinosaur

Nicholas, afraid of the dark, has a little toy dinosaur that gives him strength. He sees his dad as brave and bigger than life. When the dino goes missing, his confidence is gone, until Dad helps him find it and lets him know it is ok to have the dino as a helper. Santat’s signature illustrations fit just right with the story, and looking for a dinosaur on every page will be a fun task for young readers. Delightful choice for Father’s Day!

We’re all wonders by R.J. Palacio

What does it mean to be different? Here’s a book that celebrates the ordinary and the extra-ordinary. We ARE all wonders, indeed. A simple-to-read book that asks the reader to look with kindness, and see what they can see. Nice pairing with Happy Dreamer (see below).

I lost my sock! : a matching mystery / by P.J. Roberts

Need a quick book with rhymes and matching for your next storytime? This one is not terribly original, but it is fun, and storytime kids will likely be in on the joke well before Fox is.

I am (not) Scared by Anna Kang, illustrated by Christopher Weyant

These bear-like creatures are back (You are (not) Small) and this time, they show us differing perspectives on what is scary, and what is not. A fun choice for storytime or for opening a discussion on what is scary.

Up!: How FamiliUp! es Around the World Carry Their Little Ones / by Susan Hughes, illustrated by Ashley Barton

Upsy-daisy baby! How do babies get carried? In a sling, in a parka, on a hip, in a pack – diverse families from around the world show the young reader that all babies get carried by those who love and care for them. Cut-paper collage illustration fit the tone nicely. Good for toddler storytimes and one-on-one exploration.

Places to Be by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Renata Liwska  Places to be

This book has such wondrous vocabulary, in a simple setting: beastly, vibrant, brave, sneaky, acrobatic – and the illustrations, made with “brush and ink and digital hocus-pocus” take those words to a new level. Two little bear siblings take us through a range of activities, emotions, and places. A winner for quiet storytimes, bedtime, or sharing in a small setting.

Happy Dreamer by Peter H. Reynolds

Do you know a child who always seems to have their head in the clouds? Who sees things in their own way? Who daydreams, creates, and plays? This book helps to remind us that there are many kids of dreamers, and there’s nothing wrong with dreaming. Reynolds’ cartoon-style drawings help the dreamers leap off the page, and soar to their own tunes. Full of great vocabulary and plenty to dream about.

People of the SeaFor Teachers:

The People of the Sea by Donald Uluadluak, illustrated by Mike Motz

This story, based on an Inuit legend and told by an Inuit storyteller, is a great addition to First Nations studies. The story feels very much like a storyteller sitting right there with you telling the tale, and the illustrations help to put the story in the setting. There is plenty of extra information about the teller and the book includes a pronunciation guide, making this an excellent mentor text for writing a personal tale.






Some dogs and guessing games

For some reason, there are a lot of dogs in the books I picked up this week. So, if you are hankering for a doggie storytime, I have you covered.

First off, Smicbear atek, by Doreen Cronin. Her books are so active, you can really get moving with them. In this one, very sparse vocabulary featuring a dog, a bird, and a stick turns into a fun guessing game. Could work well for a multi-age group.

It’s only Stanley by Jon Agee – Stanley is a fix-it dog who wakes up his family with his late-night repair jobs. A slightly complex rhyme scheme and great vocabulary compliment the humour. Repeated verse and a good chance for guessing make this a great choice for older preschoolers. Plus, Agee’s cartoon  illustration style really appeals.

The Bear Ate Your Sandwich by Julia Sarcone-Roach is a surprise-ending tale that does not seem to feature a dog, but read it and you will find a dog. Another “Bear goes to the city” book, but still a fun tale with bright, large illustrations. Look at that bear’s face! what ship

Another guessing game book, which was published in 2014 but new to our system is What Ship is Not a Ship? by Harriet Ziefert. This fun play on words may be a bit long for younger preshcoolers, but you could certainly use a few pages & get them to try to guess. Lots of new vocabulary. (PS, the answer is friendship).

A new dino book is nearly always a hit.  The Dinosaurs are Having a Party by Gareth P. Jones will fit the bill. In a jaunty rhyme, a boy goes to a dinosaur birthday party …but where’s thraindropse food? The story is slight but the pictures are bold and silly, and will make a good addition to dinosaur storytimes.

Raindrops Roll by April Pulley Sayre is a fine way to add a bit of non-fiction into storytime. The clear nature photography and rich vocabulary make it a good choice for rainy-day storytimes.

And I have to mention Ron Lightburn’s new book, Frankenstink. It has just about everything you need to get a reluctant reader on board: funny rhymes, underwear, gross garbage, and farts. It would work well for ages 5 -8, so it makes a good frankenstinkchoice for class visits or after-school groups. If you are doing a recycling theme, this book will fit in just right. Or read it at a Grossology program. It is sometimes hard to find a good school-age book to read aloud, but keep a copy of this on hand for just that purpose. And don’t forget to check out the glow-in-the-dark cover! Oh, and there’s a dog in this one, too.

App of the Week: Bugs & Bubbles

App: Bugs & Bubbles                                                bubbles

Developer: Little Bit studio

Price: $2.99

Platform: iPad/iPhone

Educational Use:  colors, counting, letters, patterns, shapes, sorting

Age: 2-7

Why I like it:  Lots of games, different levels, and many ways to learn. Nice graphics, too.

There are 18 games in this app, so the $2.99 pricetag is pretty reasonable (and it looks great on the iPad, which is how I tested it).  Each game has levels, so the youngest can play and older kids will probably be interested as well.  It has soothing background music and  really nice graphics. And who doesn’t love bubbles? There are games for learning colors, counting, recognizing patterns, learning about opposites, vocabulary, matching, a game that uses “pinching” -(building those pincer muscles again),  a letter drawing activity, and several more! The games are entertaining enough to play more than once, and the skills that can be developed are many.


A few fun books to share


Good news, bad news  by Jeff Mack

The classic “when life gives you lemons” story is told in only 4 words and a cleverly illustrated story. You’ll need to extend the book with lots of questions and have the kids help you tell this one, but it could be great fun!

Don’t Copy Me! by Jonathan Allen

Poor puffin – 3 little gulls are so annoying as they copy everything he says and does. This is a fun little romp with a tiny little lesson in patience and friendship. Vocabulary builder: kids will certainly understand the meaning of the word “annoying” after reading this book. Delve into more of Allen’s books, including I’m not Santa, I’m not cute, and others.

Too Tall Houses by Gianna Marino

Owl and rabbit are great neighbours until one day when their house-building obsessions get out of hand. They finally realize that working together is best. This is a good little tale of cooperation and friendship. Could be extended with a building exercise—how about LEGO, toilet paper tubes, or boxes?

The King Who Wouldn’t Sleep by Debbie Singleton

Kids who know about counting sheep will get the joke in this tale of a king who swears he will not sleep until he finds the perfect prince for his daughter. Add it to bedtime and pajama storytimes for a fun twist on the “counting sheep” theme. Need I say that you can add in some intentional counting when sharing this one?

Underground by Denise Fleming

See what happens under the ground in this sparsely worded yet rich-in-vocabulary exploration. Young nature lovers will enjoy seeing the underground world that Fleming has created. Would be a nice addition to a storytime featuring worms and dirt. Worm races anyone?

Tag Cloud