Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Dr. Seuss Day!

We had fun for Dr. Seuss Day this year!

I wanted to have a fun carnival-style party for the kids to celebrate one of the most influential authors of early literacy.  (For more information on Theodor Geisel, click here)

Can you guess who I dressed up as?

I read a book and I had a guest reader (special guest and regular storytime reader... my awesome sister!).  I read Green Eggs and Ham and Jill read Fox in Socks.

Thanks, Jill, for reading!!! (Fox in Socks is her specialty--those tongue twisters don't phase her)

Green Eggs and Ham!

The view through the truffula trees!

Yummy snacks! Truffula seeds, and Lorax oranges, just off to the side are the "1 Fish, 2 Fish Goldfish" and the Hop on Pop-corn!

Can't be thirsty if you have Pink Yink Ink Drink, right?

My staff got into, it too!

Oobleck... some kids loved it and some were hesitant.

Cat in the Hat Stack!

Oh, the Places You'll Go Suitcase Journal (made from a lunch bag!)

We had a very good time and are looking forward to next year!!

Monday, 6 March 2017

New Book Review--Scar Island

Welcome to Scar Island.  Actually, un-welcome...

Island, lighthouse, asylum, boys' reform school, sanctuary or prison?


I found this book to be strongly written, great character development and excellent pacing.  While I usually lament the lack of plot resolution in action books--this one didn't actually  need it.  The resolution is built into the characters and continues to tell the story after the last page.  The story is dark but not too dark, scary but not overwhelming.  While an experienced reader can't help but draw comparisons between this and Lord of the Flies the author deflates any arguments of comparison by referencing that and other classic titles--incorporated so that I now want to read or re-read the books mentioned.

The adult/parent/educator part of me really enjoyed the homage paid to classic literature as well as the emotional appeal of reading aloud that plays a part in the plot as well as an unexpected librarian who acts almost as an oracle.

I am taking this book home for my boys to read--they are going to love the dismal setting, the well-paced action and the strong characters.  Z and E will identify with some, shy away from others, and feel the sense of healing they undergo as the story reaches its peak. Fantastic adventure with just enough poignancy to satisfy but more than enough action to keep things exciting!

Thank you Dan Gemeinhart for this superb story!

Thursday, 2 March 2017

New Book Review--Children's Books!

Woo hoo!  New picture books came in and I really enjoyed these:

The Secret Project by Jonah Winter and Jeanette Winter

This nonfiction picture book is an excellent introduction to an incredibly powerful part of recent science history, the invention of the atomic bomb.  Living in New Mexico, close to Trinity Site anything set here peaks my interest.  In an understandable way, the author details the secrecy and importance of what the scientists did in the secret lab in the secret town and captures a little of how their daily lives were lived in such a remote area.  The text concentrates on the secrecy and scientific importance of the project but does not overlay moral judgement of if it "should" have been done.

The Unexpected Love Story of Alfred Fiddleduckling by Timothy Basil Ering

Apropos of the title, I unexpectedly fell in love with the story of Alfred Fiddleduckling.  From his beginning as a precious cargo to his lonely adventure on the sea, Alfred Fiddleduckling is special.  I melted when I saw the illustration of him discovering the fiddle (I play violin so I already have a soft spot here) and learning the magic of the sounds he could make.  The rest of the story is haunting but beautiful and the author cleverly lets the young readers finish the story on their own.

Good Night! Good Night! by Carin Berger

If you've ever had to put a toddler (or toddlers) to bed... read this! You'll laugh at the accuracy!

Bob, Not Bob! by Liz Garton Scanlon & Audrey Vernick, illustrated by Matthew Cordell

Poor Little Louie has a cold.  And, even though he's a big boy, he wants his mom when he doesn't feel good.  Unfortunately for him, his stuffy nose confuses everybody so that his beloved dog, Bob comes trotting to the rescue every time Louie calls for "Bob (mom)!"  I love the indicative font that shows who Louie is calling when the mistake happens (hint, look for the heart).  It's just a sweet story of how important mom really is and how she can make things better even when you're sick.

More to come!