Perfect Picture Book Friday – Bugs! Bugs! Bugs!

Happy Friday, All!

Before we get to today’s Perfect Picture Book, I’d like to thank everyone for their enthusiastic response to last week’s book, Diva Delores And The Opera House Mouse, and all the nice comments for author Laura Sassi!

AND…

I’d like to announce the winner of the hot-off-the-presses copy of Laura’s wonderful book!

Chelsea Owens, come on down!  You are the lucky winner of this fabulous prize!  Please email me (susanna[at]susannahill[dot]com) with your snail mail address so Laura can get your book out to you as soon as possible!  Congratulations! 🙂

Now.

In spite of the fact that every time I turn around it is snowing, it IS in fact officially spring!  And what says spring like bugs?

In an effort to encourage spring to show herself, let’s talk about bugs! 🙂

Title: Bugs! Bugs! Bugs!

Written & Illuatrated By: Bob Barner

Chronicle Books, 1999, Non-Fiction

Suitable For Ages: 2-6

Themes/Topics: Bugs

Opening: “Bugs! Bugs! Bugs!  I want to see bugs!  Butterflies that flutter in the sky.  Spotted ladybugs that go creeping by.”  (This is actually the first three spreads.)

Brief Synopsis: Simple facts about familiar bugs in a rhyme.

bugs 1

illustration copyright Bob Barner 1999

Links To Resources:  One back page of the book includes a display of actual-sized bugs so young readers can see how big they are in real life and how they compare with each other.  Another back page compares facts about all the insects mentioned in the book: can it fly, where does it live, etc.  Here are a few activities, and here are a bunch of coloring pages.

Why I Like This Book: This book is delightfully simple.  Easy enough for youngest readers to enjoy, but with enough information in the back to interest slightly older children.  The pictures are bright, colorful, and engaging and do a great job of making bugs look friendly and non-threatening.  I’m not really much of a bug person, but I find this book very appealing 🙂  This is also an interesting example for writers to study.  The author gets across information in a fun way in only 76 words!

bugs 2

illustration copyright Bob Barner 1999

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

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out 🙂 ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! 🙂

 

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Sleep Tight Farm

Hurray!  It’s Perfect Picture Book Friday!

I’m excited because this weekend I’ll be at the New York State Sheep & Wool Festival in Rhinebeck, reading during story time with my author friends Iza Trapani and Nancy Shaw, and signing copies of Can’t Sleep Without Sheep and some of my other books alongside them.

If you’ve never been to Sheep & Wool, I highly recommend it if you’re in the area!  It’s like the fair, only with lovely autumn weather, every kind of sheep under the sun,

llamas and alpacas,

llamas

craft workshops, gorgeous yarns,

yarn

knitting and crochet patterns, beautiful clothing and other gift items made from wool, all kinds of fun activities for kids, AND delicious treats like apple crisp made from local apples! 🙂

I hope you’ll join us!

Meanwhile, today’s Perfect Picture Book fits rather nicely with the sheep and wool theme since it’s all about farming and getting ready for winter!  Have a look!

sleep-tight-farm

Title: Sleep Tight Farm: A Farm Prepares For Winter

Written By: Eugenie Doyle

Illustrated By: Becca Stadtlander

Chronicle Books, August 2016, nonfiction

Suitable For Ages: publisher says 2-5 but I think 3-7 is equally doable

Themes/Topics: nature, seasons (fall/winter), farming, jobs/careers

Opening: “The December days shorten and darken.  We are busy putting the farm to bed.”

Brief Synopsis: This peaceful book shows a family getting their farm ready for winter after the cycle of spring growth, summer heat, and fall harvest.  Beautiful and informative.

Links To Resources: author’s note at the end describes her life on the farm; extensive list of Autumn Lesson Plans from Scholastic; fun Fall & Harvest-Themed Lesson Plans from Bright Hub Education; 10 Easy Steps To Making Homemade Jam With Your Kids; draw a picture of a farm; draw the fruits and vegetables you would like to grow and pick!

Why I Like This Book: This is a very quiet book.  It shows a family harvesting the fruits of their year-long labor – fruits and vegetables, honey from the beehives, wood to warm their home – and tucking their farm in for the winter.  The harvest is pictured ripe and colorful.  The indoor scenes of home and barn are cozy and filled with warm, bright colors, animals and loving family.  By the last page where the light is blue and silver and the snow is falling gently you feel just as tucked in as the farm 🙂  But in addition to being a calm and cozy read, it is extremely informative about how the things we eat are grown and harvested, so young readers will get a sense of where their food comes from.  A pleasant and educational read!

screen-shot-2016-10-13-at-1-04-40-pm

text copyright Eugenie Doyle 2016, illustration copyright Becca Stadtlander 2016

screen-shot-2016-10-13-at-1-05-29-pm

text copyright Eugenie Doyle 2016, illustration copyright Becca Stadtlander 2016

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do 🙂

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

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out 🙂 ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!!  Work on your Halloweensie entries!!!  🙂  Come to NYS Sheep & Wool if you can!!! 🙂

 

 

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Because Of An Acorn

By golly, it’s Perfect Picture Book Friday again!  Woo hoo!!!

I must admit, I am not sorry to see the back end of this week.

Some philosophical proverb spouter said that into every life a little rain must fall.  There is both truth and beauty in that statement (…also potentially a picture book! 🙂 )  In nature rain is life-giving, restorative and essential, and in life the metaphorical rainy days help us appreciate the sunshine all the more when it returns.  But it can be a little hard to remember that when you’re standing bare-headed in the downpour 🙂

Be that as it may, the weekend approacheth with sunshiny promises of family time, maybe a hike if it doesn’t rain, maybe a movie if it does, and at least a few minutes curled up with a good book and a cup of tea (I’m finishing Laini Taylor’s YA Daughter of Smoke And Bone trilogy which I highly recommend if you haven’t read it yet! and if you haven’t tried Celestial Seasonings Bengal Spice I highly recommend that as well as the books – I’m a die-hard coffee drinker but this tea has me questioning my long-standing allegiance 🙂 )

Anyone else read a great book recently that they’d like to share here?  (and for this purpose it doesn’t have to be a picture book 🙂 )  Or has anyone been to the movies lately or planning on going this weekend?  What do you recommend?  Please share in the comments!!!  We’re getting to that time of year where a stockpile of good books and movies is oh-so-lovely to have 🙂  My daughter and I saw Bridget Jones’s Baby last weekend and what can I say?  I love Bridget Jones no matter what she’s doing 🙂

Anyway, speaking of nature and sunshine and rain, have a look at today’s Perfect Picture Book – an absolute delight of simplicity and beauty!

acorn

Title: Because Of An Acorn

Written By: Lola M. Schaefer & Adam Schaefer

Illustrated By: Frann Preston-Gannon

Chronicle Books, August 2016, fiction based on fact

Suitable For Ages: 3-6

Themes/Topics: nature, animals, ecosystem, environmental preservation

Opening: “Because of an acorn, a tree.”

Brief Synopsis: (from Amazon) “Because of an acorn, a tree grows, a bird nests, a seed becomes a flower. Enchanting die-cuts illustrate the vital connections between the layers of an ecosystem in this magical book. Wander down the forest path to learn how every tree, flower, plant, and animal connect to one another in spiraling circles of life. An acorn is just the beginning.”

Links To Resources: the book itself contains back matter about white oak trees, the ecosystem, and the importance of forest, as well as a “What You Can Do To Help” section; Acorn Crafts For Kids

Why I Like This Book:  This book is so simple and accessible, but explores so beautifully the vital interconnectedness of all things in an ecosystem.  Everything exists within the context of everything else, and all are interdependent.  In addition, it shows how something small can be the beginning of something big – a concept all children can appreciate 🙂  The art is enchanting – so inviting and appealing – just drawing you into the world of the forest (no pun intended 🙂 ).  A wonderful choice for the young naturalist in your home or classroom! 🙂

acorn-int

text copyright Lola and Adam Schaefer 2016, illustration copyright Frann Preston-Gannon 2016

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do 🙂

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

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out 🙂 ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! 🙂

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Bugs! Bugs! Bugs!

Happy Friday, All!

So!  I think we had some success with the google form last week.  Do you?  I mean, there were a few kinks, but once I got the size adjusted and such like, it seemed like it worked pretty well.  Yes? No? Maybe so?  What are your thoughts?

I like this model because I can see how easy it would be to archive Perfect Picture Books into the Google Form right from the list here each week – it would be sort of self-managing.  The only part I have to figure out is how to add the themes in an efficient and easily navigable way.  But all the rest will load directly into the form and can be easily viewed by week and searched by book title, author, illustrator, key word, etc… (and eventually theme.)  It sounds too good to be true!  We shall see 🙂

Anyhoo, onto today’s Perfect Picture Book!  As you can probably tell from my recent posts, I have spring on the brain, and what says warm weather like bugs? 🙂

Title: Bugs! Bugs! Bugs!

Written & Illuatrated By: Bob Barner

Chronicle Books, 1999, Non-Fiction

Suitable For Ages: 2-6

Themes/Topics: Bugs

Opening: “Bugs! Bugs! Bugs!  I want to see bugs!  Butterflies that flutter in the sky.  Spotted ladybugs that go creeping by.”  (This is actually the first three spreads.)

Brief Synopsis: Simple facts about familiar bugs in a rhyme.

Links To Resources:  One back page of the book includes a display of actual-sized bugs so young readers can see how big they are in real life and how they compare with each other.  Another back page compares facts about all the insects mentioned in the book: can it fly, where does it live, etc.  Here are a few activities, and here are a bunch of coloring pages.

Why I Like This Book: This book is delightfully simple.  Easy enough for youngest readers to enjoy, but with enough information in the back to interest slightly older children.  The pictures are bright, colorful, and engaging and do a great job of making bugs look friendly and non-threatening.  I’m not really much of a bug person, but I find this book very appealing 🙂  This is also an interesting example for writers to study.  The author gets across information in a fun way in only 76 words!

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

PPBF peeps, please leave your picture book title and post-specific link in the google form below along with as much of the other information as you feel like putting in (nothing but title and link are required, but you will earn mucho brownie points with Yours Truly if you enter the other info because it saves me having to do it at some later time 🙂 )

NOTE:  As you can see, I’m still learning how to use google forms and spreadsheets.  I’ve made some kind of error that is causing a big blank spot at the top of the list, but all of today’s Perfect Picture Books DO appear on the list… you just have to scroll down.  Technopoop.  That’s me 🙂

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone, and for those of you who celebrate, Happy Easter! 🙂

(And for everyone, Happy Chocolate 🙂 )

choc bunny

Perfect Picture Book Friday – President Squid

It’s a brave new world, darlings!  We are going where no technomoron has dared venture before… into the Land of Google Forms!

In my ongoing quest to find a way to get our Perfect Picture Book Link List to show up in the actual blog post, I asked my talented web designer (who made this beautiful new website for me) if he had any bright ideas.

He did.

A Google Form.

So we’re going to try it today and see how it works and how we like it!  Please feel free to share your thoughts on this new system in the comments.

All you have to do is fill in your Perfect Picture Book title on the line that says “Title” (for example, The Opposite Zoo) and then copy and paste your post-specific url into the line that says “link” (for example, https://susannahill.com/2016/03/11/perfect-picture-book-friday-the-opposite-zoo/), and then scroll down a smidge within the form box and hit the Submit button.

In an ideal world, your title and link will then show up on the list below!

Wouldn’t that be awesome?

I’m not sure if it will work instantly… or if you’ll have to refresh your browser to get it to show up… or exactly what will happen…

But that is why we are so daring!  We shall try it!  If it works, wonderful!  If it doesn’t, we’ll move on to Plan J or whatever we’re up to at this point… 🙂

Here is MY Perfect Picture Book for today – tons of fun!  Then we’ll get to the newfangled Google Form and see if all of YOUR Perfect Picture Books line up nicely and behave 🙂

President Squid

Title: President Squid

Written By: Aaron Reynolds

Illustrated By: Sara Varon

Chronicle Books, March 1, 2016, Fiction

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics:  leadership, politics, responsibility, humor

Opening:  “I HAVE REALIZED SOMETHING VERY IMPORTANT.  Something that changes everything!

No giant squid has ever been president before!

Which means I will be the first.

President Squid!

Now that has a nice ring to it.

I WILL BE THE GREATEST PRESIDENT WHO EVER LIVED!

Wanna know why?

Here are five important reasons.”

Brief Synopsis: In a persuasive style reminiscent of campaigning politicians, Squid presents the compelling reasons why he should be president… until he decides maybe there’s an alternative.

Links To Resources: US Government For Kids (K-5); discuss with your children or students whether or not they would like the job of president.  How would they go about campaigning?  What kinds of things would they like to change, and how would they go about creating the change they’d like to see?  Write letters to the president and tell him in what ways you think he’s doing a good job and what things you’d like to see him do if he’s able (or she, given that it’s an election year 🙂 )  Write a letter or give a talk in which you present 5 reasons why you’d be very good at something, or why you should be chosen for something (persuasive writing exercise)

Why I Like This Book:  Very simple: it’s funny! 🙂  And Squid has a very believably childlike twist to his personality in that he is absolutely sure he wants something, totally committed to getting it, right up until the moment he decides…actually…he wants something else 🙂  The story is clever, light-hearted and fun, and teaches a good lesson about making sure you know what it is you’re asking for because you just might get it!

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

Okay, PPBF peeps!  It’s time!  Please leave your post-specific links in the brandy-spandy-newfangled google form below so we can all come see what fabulous books you’ve chosen this week!  Fingers crossed it works! 🙂

 

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! 🙂