Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Spring Reading List

Now that the rain has finally stopped and the sun is out it is starting to feel like summer.  My old co-workers are out of school for the summer and the reading program is underway.  Although it's not officially summer quite yet, it sure seems like it around here so I figured it was time to post our spring reading list.  It's been fun to not just read books with Carter, but also Elise and more often than not both of them together!  Read last year's spring reading list here.

Our Top Reading Choices From This Spring:
  • More by I. C. Springman, I loved all the possibilities of this book.  It could be used to start so many different discussions.  The bird has a tag on it's leg which could spark a conversation of why and what it would be used for.  On each page there are words that describe amounts which would be good for talking with younger children about what they mean.  The book could also be used when it's time for your child to get rid of some toys.  You could read the book and talk about the problem the bird had, relating it to your child. 
  • Happy by Miles van Hout, This book was really simple.  Each page had a feeling word with a fish showing that emotion on the opposite page.  Carter loved the book and frequently asked for the "fishy book".  It would be a great read with older children as well.  You could look at the picture of the fish and have them tell you what emotion they think the fish is displaying.  It would also be a great way to talk about more colorful words you could use to describe emotions such as happy, sad, and mad.  In that sense it would be a great mentor text for writer's workshop.  You could also use the book to talk about colors and even stretch it further into art and why we use certain colors to depict different emotions.  This book provides so many opportunities for teaching!
  • Use Your Words, Sophie! by Rosemary Wells, Carter loved this book and asked to read it over and over.  I think he liked it so much because he related to Sophie since she was newly a big sister.  The book would be great for starting a conversation with an older child who is struggling with a new sibling.  I wished I'd found this book for our new baby theme, it would have been perfect!
  • Baby, Come Away by Victoria Adler, Carter wanted to read this one over and over.  He liked that it had different animals and a baby and that the baby played with the animals.  He also tends to really like books that rhyme. 
  • Hickory Dickory Dock by Keith Baker, This adaptation of the traditional nursery rhyme thrilled Carter.  He loved all the different animals and his favorite page was when the donkey kicked and broke the gate.  He would flip back to that page and laugh.  He liked it so much we'd read it multiple times in a row.  Then he'd ask me to go through and look at the animals, making up words for what they might be saying.  We had way too much fun with that and belly laughed like crazy.
  • Mommy's Best Kisses by Margaret Anastas, This was a favorite of mine.  Each page had a different animal mother kissing her baby on a different body part.  Of course I kissed Carter on the same place as it said in the book.  There were some that were his favorites.  Each time I got to the page where the giraffe mother was kissing her baby on the neck he would start giggling because he knew I was going to kiss his neck.  I loved it!  It was a perfect book to have around for Mother's Day and a great excuse to kiss my baby over and over!
  • Twinkle Twinkle Little Star by Jane Cabrera, Another adaptation to a classic nursery rhyme that Carter adored.  We read it over and over.  The only problem was then in the car he would ask me to sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and when I'd start singing he'd say, "No, the sparkle sparkle one."  I didn't know the words so I couldn't sing it!
  • Baby ABC by Deborah Donenfeld, I loved this book.  It was so simple.  Each page had a letter of the alphabet and then a baby pictured with something that started with that letter.  What I really loved about it was that the picture was all in black and white except for the item that started with the letter for the page, it was in color.  It was fun to point to the letter and tell Carter it's name and sound, then ask him what started with that letter.  I'd help him figure it out at first and then he caught on that the only thing in color on the page was the answer.
  • Little Burro by Jim Arnosky, This book is one of my picks.  I really enjoyed it and loved all the teaching points it lended itself to.  The baby burro in the book behaves just as a toddler would and leaves us with the start to a conversation about behavior.  It would also be great to talk about how sometimes it's scary to try something new, but you might actually really like it.  In the book the burro doesn't want to leave his favorite place and go to the river, but once there he loves it and it becomes his other favorite place.  Carter also enjoyed the book due to all the hee-hawing going on! It ended up being one he asked me to read over and over.
  • White Is For Blueberry by George Shannon,  This was a great book to get children to think about things in a different way.  I'd love to read this to Carter when he's older and then have him think of other objects that could be described with a different color than what we'd normally think.  It would also be a good book for practicing with colors.
  • One by Kathryn Otoshi, I'm definitely buying this book for my classroom before I go back to teaching.  I'd also like to get it for Carter.  There are so many great lessons in this book.  The most obvious is bullying and how you can stand up to a bully and how important it is for friends to stand up for others who are being bullied.  It could also be used to talk about how everyone is important and how important it is to do your best.  It would even be a good read during Earth Day because you could talk about how one person can make a difference.  This book could be an opener to a conversation about how one person could make a difference and then list out different things we can do to make a difference.  I loved this book so many times over!  It was probably my favorite children's book I've read in a while! 

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