It’s Monday and I’m happy to be participating in a weekly event with a community of bloggers who post reviews of books that they have read the previous week. Check out more IMWAYR posts here: Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers
It’s hard to keep up with all the amazing books that are being released this summer! Here are some of the new picture books I read this week.
1. The Summer Nick Taught Cats to Read – Curtis Manley & Kate Berube
An adorable story about a determined boy who teaches his two cats to read. A perfect way to illustrate that not all readers learn the same way and that finding the ‘just right book’ for every reader is an important part of the process. A delightful book to celebrate reading!
2. Follow the Moon Home: A Tale of One Idea, Twenty Kids, and a Hundred Sea Turtles
– Deborah Hopkinson &
WOW! Take note of this book! It is ah-mazing! So much to love about this book, written by the grandson of Jacques Cousteu. I especially love that it combines so many amazing ‘teachable’ themes including: creative problem solving, animal activism, young people making a difference, community as well as fascinating sea turtle facts woven into the story. This one’s a winner!
3. On The Farm, At The Market – G. Brian Karas
A delightful, informative look at how produce gets from the farm to the farmers market to a restaurant. This book would make a great introduction to farmer’s markets, gardening, community and farming. Charming illustrations.
4. More-Igami – Dori Kleber
This book totally surprised me when I read it! It is the story about a little boy named Joey who loves folding things. When he tries to make an origami crane, his determined effort unfortunately results in a lot of frustration and crumpled paper. (Think ‘Most Magnificent Thing‘) A lovely book about perseverance and passion and would also inspire some origami art! Lovely illustrations by G. Brian Karas – who has been busy as the previous book was written and illustrated by him as well! Instructions in the back to make an origami ladybug (a little odd because the book was about a crane! )
5. Come Home, Angus – Patrick Downes
Great book dealing with how to manage when sometimes our small frustrations can lead to big emotions. Clever clues in the illustrations to help capture the growing emotion in Angus. I like that even when Angus runs away, Mom is never far behind him.
6. The Class – Boni Ashburn
Well, I know that there are hundreds of ‘BACK TO SCHOOL’ books to choose from but I couldn’t help myself – this one is must have this year! What makes this one special is we follow 20 different students from 19 different homes as they get ready kindergarten. This book is a true celebration of diversity with children from many different backgrounds, morning rituals, routines, families, and ways of getting ready to go to school. Adorable illustrations and a perfect ‘CONNECT’ book!
This is My Dollhouse – Giselle Potter
A celebration of imagination and creativity! A young girl creates a detailed dollhouse out of a cardboard box but worries her friend will not like it as much as a ‘real’ dollhouse. When I was younger, my sister and I spent hours designing houses for our dolls and stuffies – I would have loved this book then, and I love it now! Would be a great book to inspire creative thinking and play!
Yaks Yak – Animal Word Pairings – Linda Sue Park
A funny, playful look at homophones through animal pairings and word play. On each page, animals act out the version of their names as verbs – Fish fish with lines and hooks; Bats swing bats at baseballs; Slugs try to slug one another with boxing gloves. I loved the chart at the end of the book which gives the etymology for each of the words. Great fun and if you love words, like I do, you will love this book!
7. Madeline Finn and the Library Dog – Lisa Papp
This is a delightful little story which highlights the use of therapy dogs in libraries to help reluctant readers. Madeline Finn doesn’t like to read because she doesn’t read well. But Bonnie, the beautiful dog who comes to the library, listens patiently and doesn’t laugh when she stumbles on some of the words. Unconditional love and suppport goes a long way when you are struggling reader.
For those of you who do not know this story of the Recycled Orchestra of Paraguay- it is a must read and a must share with your class. This non-fiction picture books tells the remarkable true story about a visionary teacher who finds a way to help children escape their lives of extreme poverty through music. A beautifully told, hopeful, inspiring story with gorgeous colorful collage art. My personal connection to this book is that my next-door neighbour is involved in a recycled instrument campaign here in Vancouver and hosted this group when they came to play here in May. When they left, they presented him with one of their recylcled instruments – one of only 4 that they have ever given away. The documentary film Landfill Harmonic about this extraordinary journey will be released this fall. You can watch (and share) an inspiring 4 minute video, with the ‘real’ Ada here or a longer report 60 Minutes did on this story here.
This book has not yet been released but I was fortunate enough to read the a copy of the ARC that Kidsbooks had. It is a powerful and poignant story of the damage of wastefulness. It is an important one to share with your students and would be a great companion book to Ada’s Violin. With the help of his grandfather, Arun learns how every wasteful act, no matter how small, affects others. “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” This is definitely a Transform book and I would use the ‘one word’ activity with it – using the word WASTE.
THANKS FOR STOPPING BY!
Which book or books have caught your eye?