Perfect Picture Book Friday – Meet The Dullards

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday, Everyone!

As you all know, I am behind (not even going to say how far!) in updating the Perfect Picture Book List.  One of my problems is that Blogger overloaded due to how much I was trying to put on that page.  I’m trying to sort out a better system.  Stacy, the wonderful and generous, put together a possible plan which I haven’t had time to figure out yet, but in the meantime, at the very least, I have two (2!) things to mention.

1.  I am experimenting with using Pinterest for the theme lists, so many Perfect Picture Books, grouped by theme, are on Pinterest HERE.

2.  The complete alphabetical list of books that have been done through April 10, 2015, is on another blog HERE.  It is grouped into titles A-H, I-P, and Q-Z.  Although all the titles are listed, the vast majority have yet to be linked to their reviews because I haven’t figured out how to get an eighth day into the week just for PPBF updating 🙂

There is a theme list on the new blog and it is complete – all the themes are listed alphabetically, and they connect to the Pinterest boards… but the Pinterest boards are only partially loaded.

There is a list of contributing bloggers on the right side of the new blog which I know is incomplete.  If you’re a contributing blogger whose site isn’t mentioned, please feel free to email me and I’ll add you in – I just couldn’t remember everything off the top of my head so have been adding slowly as I go along – and I apologize for not getting you up there already!

As I said, I’ve been experimenting, so things are a bit at sixes and sevens and this is a stop-gap measure until I can figure out what is going to work best for this amazing and impressive list.  In my dreams, I’d also like to list the books in a way that would be helpful to writers looking for mentor texts – examples of parallel stories, or wordless picture books, etc…  But like I said, I lack an eighth weekday… so we’ll see 🙂

As for today’s Perfect Picture Book, I have a fun one for you, because sometimes books should just be fun 🙂

Title: Meet The Dullards
Written By: Sara Pennypacker
Illustrated By: Daniel Salmieri
Balzer & Bray, March 2015, Fiction

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics: humor, family

Opening: “One day, Mr. and Mrs. Dullard received quite a nasty surprise. [art: children are reading books: Becoming One With The Tightrope and The Nicest Way To Befriend A Lion]  The Dullards collected the books and handed their children some nice blank paper to read instead.  Then they left the room to discuss the problem in private.”

Brief Synopsis: Mr. and Mrs. Dullard are committed to raising a dull family, doing everything in their power to keep their children safe from the evils of applesauce cake, puppies, and thinking.  If only they knew… 🙂

Links To Resources: talk about family traditions: what are some things you do as a family? How are these things alike or different from what other people do with their families?  Do you think people are “weird” if they do things differently?  Discuss things to do together as a family.  In this book, the kids are completely focused on joining the circus while their parents concentrate on being dull – in a group or individually, think up and illustrate another Dullards story where the kids have a new plan and practice making the story say one thing while the pictures show another.  Why is this funny?

Why I Like This Book:  I have long been a fan of The Stupids and, more recently, The Dumb Bunnies.  The Dullards are full of tongue-in-cheek humor.  Mrs. Dullard faints at the sight of flowered wallpaper.  The Dullards’ idea of fun is (actually!) watching paint dry.  And when Mr. and Mrs. Dullard see a snail crossing the driveway they pack up their family and move away from such dangerous excitement.  Meanwhile, readers (young and old alike) will enjoy the illustrations which depict the elder Dullards picking out paint (gray or beige?) oblivious to their offspring juggling paintbrushes, climbing on clotheslines and befriending puppies.  The contradiction of the text and the deadpan illustrations is entertaining every time through the book!  This book is just plain fun! 🙂

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF bloggers please be sure to leave your post-specific link in the list below so we can all come visit you!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! 🙂

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Perfect Picture Book Friday – Mathilda And The Orange Balloon

Would someone please tell me how it got to be Friday?

Seriously!  Where did this week go?  I am still somewhere back around midday Monday…

But since the rest of the world seems to agree that it’s Friday, let’s have a Perfect Picture Book, shall we?

Title: Mathilda And The Orange Balloon
Written By: Randall de Seve
Illustrated By: Jen Corace
Balzer & Bray, Feb. 2010, Fiction

Suitable For Ages: 3-7

Themes/Topics: imagination, be yourself/individuality

Opening: “Mathilda’s world was small.  Here’s what was in it: Green grass.  Green barn.  Gray skies.  Gray stones.  Gray sheep.”

Brief Synopsis: Mathilda lives in a small, familiar world, which is all very nice, until one day she spies an orange balloon.  She is captivated, and she believes that she can be an orange balloon too!

Links To Resources: Preschool lesson plan for the color orange; learning activities for the color orange; preschool lesson plan for sheep; pair this book with other sheep books like Sheep In A Jeep by Nancy Shaw and discuss how the sheep in the books are alike and different; pair this book with other imagination books like Harold And The Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson and discuss how Mathilda uses her imagination compared to how Harold uses his.

Why I Like This Book: This book is just darling!  Mathilda is so delightful, so cheerful, so optimistic and imaginative and determined.  “What is a balloon?” she asks, and when the others answer that it is round and it flies, Mathilda (who is a gray sheep) shows them that she too is round and can fly.  “What is orange?” she asks, and when the others answer that it is fierce like a tiger, warm like wool, and happy, she shows them that she is all those things too.  The art and the text are simple and sweet, and the message that you can be anything you want if you believe in yourself is one that is near and dear to my heart (since it is the same message that Punxsutawney Phyllis has :))  And I just have to share my favorite line from the story when Mathilda first catches sight of the orange balloon: “Mathilda had never seen anything so magnificent.” 🙂

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF bloggers, please be sure to leave your post-specific links in the list below so we can all come visit you and enjoy your selections for this week!  And please remember there will be no PPBF for the next two weeks because of the March Madness Writing Contest – so no PPBF March 21 or 28!!!

Have a great weekend, everyone!  I guess we will all be working on writing our fairy tales… wink wink nudge nudge… right??? 🙂 (For March Madness Writing Contest guidelines go HERE.)

Oh and P.S.  Be sure to stop by Monday for a guest post on a very interesting topic! (At least I think it’s interesting! :))