Perfect Picture Book Friday – The Sandcastle That Lola Built

Tomorrow is the first day of summer, which means vacation for Perfect Picture Book Friday until September.

What better way to kick off summer than with a wonderful beach story?!

sandcastle

Title: The Sandcastle That Lola Built

Written By: Megan Maynor

Illustrated By: Kate Berube

Knopf Books For Young Readers, May 2018, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 3-5

Themes/Topics: seasons (summer), cooperation, perseverance, cumulative tale

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text copyright Megan Maynor 2028, illustration copyright Kate Berube 2018, Knopf

Opening: “This is the sandcastle that Lola built.

Brief Synopsis: Lola is building a sandcastle. One challenge after another is surmounted by resourcefulness and cooperation.  Until the wave…! Will Lola ever get that sandcastle built?

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text copyright Megan Maynor 2028, illustration copyright Kate Berube 2018, Knopf

 

Links To Resources: design and build your own sandcastle at the beach, playground, or your own back yard! Draw a picture of what you think would be the perfect sandcastle.  Write your own cumulative tale about something that gets bigger and bigger, or more and more complicated, or crazier and crazier!

Why I Like This Book: I love this book because the story is cheerful and friendly and the  illustrations are sunny and fun.  Lola is trying to build a sandcastle to signal mermaids, but first a foot kicks it over, than a bulldozer digs into it, then a bucket of shells falls on it… In each case, Lola cheerfully invites the newcomer to join in, recruiting them to build protective walls, dig a surrounding moat, lay a pathway of shells… and the sandcastle becomes better and better the more children join in.  When the wave comes along and washes Lola’s beautiful castle out to sea she despairs of ever seeing the mermaids (who appear in the clouds above her), but her new friends encourage her and are keen to try again.  It’s a lovely story of determination, friendship, and cooperation all at the beautiful, sunny, summer beach!  You’ll want to pack a copy in your beach bag 😊

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do 😊

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text copyright Megan Maynor 2028, illustration copyright Kate Berube 2018, Knopf

 

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 fantastic summer, everyone!!!  There will be sporadic posts here during the rest of June and July – mostly a few Tuesday Debuts unless anyone signs up for Would You Read It, or I get the hankering for another hare-brained scheme 😊, but a bit of a blog vacation so enjoy reading and writing and sunning and funning! 😊

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Will You Be Friends With Me?

Welcome to Perfect Picture Book Friday, Everyone!

I have a sweet and lovely book to share with you today.  It is technically a board book, not a picture book, but its message of acceptance, tolerance, and appreciating difference  seemed so apt and so timely in the midst of current events that I wanted to share it.  We can all use a friend 😊💕

Will You Be Friends cover

Title: Will You Be Friends With Me?

Written By: Kathleen Long Bostrom

Illustrated By: Jo de Ruiter

WorthyKids, July 7, 2020, fiction

Suitable For Ages: Baby – 3

Themes/Topics: friendship, appreciating difference, acceptance

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text copyright Kathleen Bostrom 2020, illustration copyright Jo De Ruiter 2020, WorthyKids

Opening: “I wake early.
You sleep late.
My hair’s curly.
Yours is straight.
I say, “Now!”
You say, “Wait?”
Will you be friends with me?

Brief Synopsis: We’re all different but life is more fun that way! Anyone can be a friend!

Links To Resources: draw a picture of yourself and a friend doing something you both enjoy; write a poem about what makes a good friend; make friendship bracelets for your friends Easiest Friendship Bracelets; host a baking party where each child brings an ingredient and make Friendship Cookies; Friendship Keychains; Friendship Flowers

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text copyright Kathleen Bostrom 2020, illustration copyright Jo De Ruiter 2020, WorthyKids

Why I Like This Book: This book is simple and sweet and shows youngest readers that embracing difference is a good thing.  Kids can be different from each other in many ways, but that’s part of what makes life interesting and fun.  Friends are everywhere. The rhyme flows smoothly and is a pleasure to read, and the art is engaging and sweet, depicting a pleasantly diverse array of children. A lovely choice for any little one’s library, especially now.

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 – Library’s Most Wanted

Yee-haw! It’s Friday!

And I’ve got a rootin’-tootin’ choice for y’all to lasso and mosey on home to your corral with 😊

It’s extra perfect for the front end of summer when you might want to (and will hopefully be able to!) git-along down to your local library and stock up on books for those lovely summer days – if not at the pool or the beach, at least in your back yard hammock or pleasant window seat.

Check it out! (hehe)

Library's Most

Title: Library’s Most Wanted

Written By: Carolyn Leiloglou

Illustrated By: Sarah Pogue

Pelican Books, May 25 2020, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 3-8

Themes/Topics: books/reading, perspective, responsibility

Opening: “When Aunt Nora asked her to be deputy librarian, Libby took her job very seriously.

Brief Synopsis: (from the publisher) “Libby longs to be a great librarian like her aunt Nora, and it just chaps her hide when kids vandalize books. She hangs up Wanted posters to drive the “outlaws” from her “territory.” But when she realizes that a librarian’s real job isn’t protecting books but connecting them with readers, she must find a way to lure them back.”

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text copyright Carolyn Leiloglou 2020, illustration copyright Sarah Pogue 2020, Pelican

 

Links To Resources: activities from the author’s website (coloring page, wanted poster, word search); library activities for elementary school

Why I Like This Book: I love the concept of an assistant librarian being like a deputy sheriff, and the whole western theme of the book.  It makes the story fun and accessible.  The story is also a wonderful introduction to the idea that there can be more than one way to look at a situation.  Libby’s love for books makes her want to take good care of them and make sure they are never damaged, but that is not everyone’s idea of how to love books.  Libby has to learn that the important thing is that everyone love books – not how they love them.  The art is appealing, and I especially love all the Wanted Posters – first for the “outlaws” and then for the readers.  A wonderful celebration of reading!

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!!! 😊

P.S. PPBF will go on summer hiatus as usual in a week or two. . . just a heads up.

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Federico And The Wolf

It’s Perfect Picture Book Friday and I have such a terrific title to share with you today!

Wait until you see this one!!! 😊

Federico

Title: Federico And The Wolf

Written By: Rebecca J. Gomez

Illustrated By: Elisa Chavarri

Clarion Books, May 19, 2020, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 4-7

Themes/Topics: fairy tale retelling (Little Red Riding Hood), courage, quick thinking

Opening: “Once upon a modern time
a boy named Federico
left to buy ingredients
to make the perfect pico.”

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text copyright Rebecca J. Gomez 2020, illustration copyright Elisa Chavarri 2020 Clarion Books HMH

 

Brief Synopsis: In this modern day retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, a young boy named Federico, dressed in a red hoodie, rides his bicycle to the store to shop for the ingredients for pico.  When he arrives at Grandpa’s shop, Grandpa’s beard is so thick! and his arms are so grande! and what on earth is up with his dentures?  He does not look the way he should!

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text copyright Rebecca J. Gomez 2020, illustration copyright Elisa Chavarri 2020 Clarion Books HMH

 

Links To Resources: the back of the book has a recipe for pico and a glossary of the Spanish vocabulary included in the story; read with other retellings of Little Red Riding Hood – Ninja Red Riding Hood by Corey Rosen Schwartz, Little Red Gliding Hood by Tara Lazar, Little Red Writing by Joan Holub; make up your own version of Little Red Riding Hood (or another fairy tale 😊); Little Red Riding Hood Teaching Ideas and Activities (for preschool, kindergarten, and elementary school)

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text copyright Rebecca J. Gomez 2020, illustration copyright Elisa Chavarri 2020 Clarion Books HMH

 

Why I Like This Book: I love that in this retelling Little Red is a boy!  He rides a bike through the city streets and park instead of skipping through the woods 😊 His bike basket is filled with ingredients for making fresh pico.  The text is written in perfect rhyme and sprinkled with lots of accessible Spanish vocabulary for kids to learn from. The story is delightful from start to finish and the art is bright and engaging.  Clever and fun!  You won’t want to miss this one!

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!!!  I hope you’ll all get to celebrate Memorial Day in an appropriately socially distant way!!! 😊

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Baby Bear Discovers The World

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday!

It’s May on Blueberry Hill, and you know what that means:

Baby goslings.

Baby foxes.

Baby snakes.

Baby rabbits.

Baby groundhogs.

And given the black bear you all know was hanging out on my porch last week eating bird seed,  I’m betting there are some baby bears around too, even though I haven’t seen any… which is probably just as well because no one needs an overprotective mama bear too near their house! 😊

In the spirit of baby animals, I have chosen this very delightful book for today.  I dare you and your young reading companions not to love the pictures 🙂

Title: Baby Bear Discovers The World
Written By: Marion Dane Bauer
Photography By: Stan Tekiela
Adventure Publications Inc, 2006, Factual Fiction with great photos

Suitable For Ages: 3 and up

Themes/Topics: wild animals, growing up, independence, nature

Opening: One fine spring morning Baby Bear said to his mama, “Mama, I’m a big bear now.  It’s time for me to go out and discover the world.  Then he kissed his mama so she would know he meant business.”

Brief Synopsis: From the jacket: “Follow Baby Bear’s excursion into the big world as he tries to prove his independence, wandering closer and closer to places he doesn’t belong.  Using twin cubs and the assistance of a handler, Stan [the photographer] succeeded in getting all the photos for this book from the cubs’ natural reactions to their surroundings.  His ability to capture everything from their inquisitive faces to actually tumbling from a log is delightfully documented.”

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Links To Resources:  Everything you need is right here!  The back of the book has a section on bear facts – characteristics, activity, diet, cubs, and hibernation.  It also has a section on how the book was photographed, and another section of “outtakes and bloopers” photos – SO CUTE! 🙂  You can also go for a walk and look for signs of animals – paw prints, nests, etc.  City or country, you’re likely to discover some fun things, just like Baby Bear 🙂

Why I Like This Book:  I just absolutely adore wildlife photography.  This book combines a fun story about learning independence with exquisite photography of lots of animals besides the bears along with the surrounding flora.  It’s fun just to look at the pictures 🙂  The outtakes and bloopers photos are also tons of fun and make the experience of the book even better.  Wait until you see the picture of Baby Bear licking a mouse 🙂

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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!!! 😊

And for those of you who want to join in the Eenie Meenie Miney Mini Writing Challenge, here’s the link to week #1 for easy access 😊

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Bloom

It’s Perfect Picture Book Friday and . . . my youngest’s birthday! 😊

So I’m sharing a book that celebrates May flowers and extraordinary girls 💐🌸🌟💕

Bloom

Title: Bloom

Written By: Doreen Cronin

Illustrated By: David Small

Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books, February 2016, Fiction

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics: girl power, appreciation/gratitude, encouragement, believing in yourself

 

Opening: “Once upon a time, in a beautiful glass kingdom, there lived an unusual fairy named Bloom.  Her boots were caked with mud.  There was dirt between her teeth.  Beetles rested in her wings.  Bloom’s magic could spin sand into glass, turn weeds into blossoms, and grow a trickle of rainwater into a racing river.  Bloom was a helpful creature, but her footsteps were HEAVY, and she left a trail of tiny cracks and mud wherever she went.

Brief Synopsis: A glass kingdom is a tough place to be a Mud Fairy. Bloom and her mud fairy magic can turn weeds into flowers and spin sand into glass, but all the people of the kingdom do is complain about the trails of dirt and puddles of mud she leaves behind so, feeling unappreciated, she leaves.  When the kingdom falls into disrepair, the King and Queen search out Bloom, but it takes the most “ordinary” girl in the kingdom to restore the magic.

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Links To Resources:  Here are some resources to get kids outdoors to celebrate earth and gardens.  Plant A Family Butterfly Garden, Big Seeds For Little Hands, Information & Resources For Gardening With Children

Why I Like This Book:  This story has the delightful “Once upon a time” opening that creates the delicious anticipation of a fairy tale about to unfold.  Bloom is an unusual fairy – dirty, willing to work hard, not traditionally “girly”.  Genevieve, the “ordinary” girl whose only job has been to polish the queen’s crystal sugar spoon has never had the opportunity to discover what she’s capable of.  Working alongside Bloom, she learns that she is anything but ordinary and that she can save the kingdom.  Favorite line: “Tell them there is no such thing as an ordinary girl!” said Bloom.

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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!!! 😊🌷

A very happy birthday to my daughter and a very happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there 💕💐💕🐣

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Evie’s Field Day

It’s May! It’s May!
The lovely month of May!
That darling month when everyone goes
Blissfully astray. . .

(Okay, I confess to monkeying about with those lyrics a bit to make them acceptable for this G-rated blog, but you get the idea. . . 😊)

It’s also Perfect Picture Book Friday, and today’s pick is celebrating its Book Birthday today, so HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY!!! 🎉🎉🎉

It is here just in time for the Field Day season (although unfortunately, due to the current state of the world, a lot of Field Days may be postponed or cancelled this year.)  Kids don’t need Field Day to know about competition, sportsmanship, winning, and losing, though, so Field Day or no Field Day they will enjoy Evie’s story. 😊

Evie's Field Day

Title: Evie’s Field Day

Written By: Claire Noland

Illustrated By: Alicia Teba

Cardinal Rule Press, May 2020, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 5-7

Themes/Topics: good sportsmanship

Opening: “Evie loved to win.
She could jump the highest,
run the fastest, and hop
the farthest.”

Brief Synopsis: (From the publisher) “Evie loves to run, jump, hop, and win. She even has ribbons and trophies to prove it. So, when the school’s field day comes around, she is sure she will add to her winning collection. When Evie finds herself ahead of the pack, she is faced with an important decision. Does she choose the chance at a trophy or the chance to be a good friend?”

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Links To Resources: Jump Rope Rhymes; Fun active games (that you can play indoors or in your yard while we’re #stayingathome)

Why I Like This Book: This book celebrates competition, teamwork, consideration for others, and being a good sport, while also giving young readers the opportunity to think about how to be a good loser. In addition, since it’s about field day, it models activity and physical fitness.  I like that Evie is a little too competitive, a little too full of herself at the beginning.  It makes her a believable kid and gives her room to learn and grow by the end of the story.  All kids take part in school games, competition, Field Day, and/or sports on some level at some point and will appreciate and benefit from this book. 😊

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 – This Book Is Gray

It’s Perfect Picture Book Friday and I have such a fun book to share today!

It might look dismal and gloomy but it isn’t – it’s lovely and perfect 😊

I love books that are sweet and books that make me laugh, and this one is both!

This Book Is Gray

Title: This Book Is Gray

Written & Illustrated By: Lindsay Ward

Two Lions, December 2019, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics: colors, story-within-a-story, humor

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text and illustration copyright Lindsay Ward 2019, Two Lions

Opening: “I’m going to make the GRAYtest book ever. . .
Once upon a time, a wolf, a kitten, and a hippo lived in a small house by the sea. (Some would describe the house as dismal, bleak, or gloomy.)
But it wasn’t. It was lovely.
And GRAY.
And perfect.”

Brief Synopsis: All Gray wants is to be included. But the other colors are always leaving him out. So he decides to create his own project: an all-gray book.  Gray just knows it’s going to be perfect. But as he tries to write it, the Primary and Secondary colors show up…  Will anyone ever realize that Gray can be interesting too?

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text and illustration copyright Lindsay Ward 2019, Two Lions

Links To Resources: 20 Color Activities for Preschoolers; List of Color Activities; make your own story and/or pictures using only one color!

Why I Like This Book: For starters, it’s funny! 😊 Not only do the Primary and Secondary colors try to shoulder their way into the book, but in guessing at the story line they go off on quite a tangent.  There is also some fun color word play.  But what makes the book even better is that, underlying the story and the humor, is Gray’s heartfelt wish to be appreciated for himself, something all kids (and grown-ups 😊) can relate to.  The other colors, while a little boisterous and pushy, are not unkind, and in the end a solution is found that makes everyone happy!  A delightful way for younger readers to learn about colors and for all readers to enjoy!

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text and illustration copyright Lindsay Ward 2019, Two Lions

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 – Tap The Magic Tree

I’m so excited it’s Friday because I have the best book to share with you today, and it’s perfect for Earth Day next week!

It’s one of those “man-I-wish-I’d-thought-of-that!!!” books 😊

Are you ready?

Tap The Magic Tree

Title: Tap The Magic Tree

Written & Illustrated By: Christie Matheson

Greenwillow Books, August 2013, Fiction

Suitable For Ages: 4-8 (according to pub. – I think kids as young as 3 would love it.)

Themes/Topics: following directions/listening, magic, seasons, nature

Opening: “There’s magic in this bare brown tree.  Tap it once.  Turn the page to see.”

Brief Synopsis: The seasons change as if by magic, all at the reader’s touch!  From spring, to summer, to autumn and winter, with a lovely little surprise at the end 🙂

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Links To Resources: Classroom activities, draw pictures of different kinds of trees – apple trees, pine trees, what else can you think of and how can you make them look different from each other?  Talk about what trees wear in different seasons (and how some trees (deciduous) lose all their “clothes” and others (conifers) don’t) and compare to what you wear in different seasons.  Project Plant It: Trees For Kids And Their Communities.

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Why I Like This Book:  Who needs an app for interactivity?  This book has it all.  Tap the tree to make the leaves come out.  Rub the tree to make it warm so it blossoms.  Jiggle the tree and wiggle your fingers to make a rain of petals.  Brush the petals away and blow the tree a kiss to make apples form.  The reader is in charge and gets to do all the activities.  So clever and fun!

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 – Except If

Hi Everyone!

Time for another week’s round-up of fantastic picture books!

As you can tell by the age of the last few books I’ve reviewed, I am calling on my personal library for choices during this time when visits to the bookstore and local public library are impossible.  Luckily, I have so many gems! 😊

With Spring in the air, and Easter this weekend, it seems like a perfect time for a perfect picture book about eggs!  This book is an amazing example of how much story you can convey with only 125 words!

Except If

Title: Except If

Written & Illustrated By: Jim Averbeck

Atheneum Books For Young Readers, January 2011, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 2-8

Themes/Topics: imagination, potential, unexpected outcomes

Opening: “An egg is not a baby bird
but it will become one
except if
it becomes a baby snake.

Brief Synopsis: From the Amazon book description: “In this young, clever, and whimsical picture book in the spirit of Not a Box and First the Egg, an egg is not just an egg, but a symbol of the potential a child’s imagination holds. As each image melds smoothly, but unexpectedly, into the next, readers are invited to stretch the limits of their imagination.”

except if int.

text and illustration copyright Jim Averbeck 2011 Atheneum Books For young Readers

 

Links To Resources: Chick Hatching Activity including video, craft, song, snack idea, and more! And to make it even more fun, you could let kids put whatever they want inside the egg – frog, turtle, snake, dinosaur, etc…!

Why I Like This Book: I love this book because the first time I read it it stretched my imagination!  I turned the pages wondering where would the author go next? How could he keep the surprises going? As a writer, it’s a great example of giving your imagination free rein and letting it take you to unexpected places, as well as how much story you can tell in very few words.  As a reader (child or adult 😊), it gives just enough hints to make you think you might know what comes next…only to discover it’s something else!  For teachers, it’s a great model of how you could encourage students to explore their own concepts/ideas in a story form in an unexpected way.  The book is deceptively simple, a fun read for youngest readers, but just as intriguing for older ones!

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!!!  Happy Passover and Happy Easter to those who celebrate! 🙂

Easter eggs