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My Lucky Day
by Keiko Kasza
A hungry fox is sure that it's his lucky day when a delectable-looking pig knocks on his door by mistake. Mr. Fox grabs his squealing guest and starts to prepare a feast, but the pig asks him to wait, pointing out, "I'm filthy. Shouldn't you wash me first?" The fox prepares a lovely bath and the pig compliments him on being "a terrific scrubber." But then, the pig continues, shouldn't he be fattened up a bit? And shouldn't he be massaged so that he won't be tough? Mr. Fox grudgingly complies with these requests and soon finds himself so exhausted that "He couldn't lift a finger, let alone a roasting pan." The pig heads home, clean, well fed, relaxed, and ready to plan his next call on an unsuspecting predator. (Excerpt: School Library Journal)
Mother, Mother I Want Another
by Maria Polushin Robbins
When Mother Mouse puts her child to bed, she kisses him good night. But he starts to cry, declaring, "I want another, Mother." She assumes he wants another mother, and the story continues from there as she enlists various animals to be his other mother (even as she looks rather stricken at the prospect). A cumulative, satisfyingly repetitive story, this also offers young children a chance to get the joke well before the adult does. (Excerpt: School Library Journal)
by Margaret Wise Brown
Large, almost tactile paintings of birds, butterflies, and bunnies combine well with the flow of Brown's charming poems, originally published in 1959. "Here comes a bunny/The first to stray/Out of April/And into May" is the first verse of "Song of Summer." Spring flowers, a loving mother and baby mouse, and a young fox and curious rabbit eyeing each other across the pages are some of the vignettes that grace this appealing book. A variety of sizes of paintings, ranging from a single animal on a crisp, white background to full-color, double-spread scenes, accents the verses. Onomatopoeic and motion words are reflected in the pictures with their ground-level perspective. These five beautifully and newly illustrated poems will enchant another generation of children. (Excerpt: School Library Journal)
Cassie's Word Quilt
by Faith Ringgold
This is a wordbook, but much more. It is a lesson in the history and culture of New York City, 1939. Through Cassie, from Tar Beach (Crown, 1991), Ringgold presents a simple exploration of the child's life. In the well-patterned layout, readers see the roof of her apartment house, her bedroom, her block, her classroom, and her neighborhood. Two spreads introduce each area. One side of the first spread has a sentence such as, "Cassie's school is a good place to learn and have fun." The opposite side has a second explanatory sentence above a block of nine labeled pictures, laid out like a small quilt, that show things in the school, like "Classmates," "Teacher," and "Apple." The next spread takes those nine words and puts them into the classroom, so that students, the teacher, the apple, and the six other words reappear in that spread in action. The era and place come to life in Ringgold's boldly colored, heavily outlined paintings that show busy streets, Cassie's orderly multiracial classroom, the details of her neighborhood such as the grocer selling a quart of milk for six cents, a horse-drawn fruit stand, and a hand-pushed ice cart. Sentences and vocabulary are simple enough for beginning readers to handle on their own, but the book is also a wonderful vehicle for one-on-one sharing and classroom use. (School Library Journal)
What's What? A Guessing Game
by Mary Serfozo
Serfozo uses a question-and-answer format with spare text and simple rhymes to turn learning into a delightful guessing game. "What's light?" asks the text in bold black type on a bright white page. "Daytime is light." These words, accompanied by a lovely watercolor illustration of two African American children outdoors at play, are
immediately followed by yet another poser: "What's dark?" Once again, young readers can make their own guesses before turning the page to discover the same brother and sister huddled under a blanket-improvised tent with an owl and the moon looking down upon them in still another glorious illustration. But, Serfozo isn't finished yet. She offers kids a real tantalizer: "What's soft and hard and warm and cold and wet and dry...all at the same time?" Children turn the page to find an exuberant puppy almost literally jumping off the pages. (Excerpt: School Library Journal)
The Show-And-Tell Lion
by Barbara Abercrombie
Matthew has nothing to share for show-and-tell, so he informs his class that a lion is living at his house. Everyone believes him, and this initial lie spawns many others, as the boy must answer questions about his pet's daily activities and invent fresh excuses as to why no one can come to see it. Eventually Matthew confesses the situation to his mother, who tells him he must be honest with his classmates. (Excerpt: School Library Journal)
by Piers Harper
A young polar bear leaves his cozy arctic den on the first day of spring to meet the world. His mother warns him to stay close, but exploring is so much fun that he soon becomes lost. A girl who is fishing feeds him and takes him home in her dogsled. Full-spread illustrations contain lots of white accentuated mostly with blues, greens, purples, and browns. (Excerpt: School Library Journal)
by Gail Gibbons
This charmingly illustrated book is full of facts about this Arctic animal: where it lives, what it eats, how it gets its food, when it mates, how it rears its young, and the dangers it faces. Temperatures are given in Fahrenheit and Celsius, weight in pounds and kilograms, height in feet and meters. Although lots of information is imparted, some readers may be left with questions. For example, the text states that a polar bear "is able to catch a seal about every five days." (Excerpt: School Library Journal)
The Thanksgiving Bowl
by Virginia L. Kroll.
Grandma hosts Thanksgiving each year. In the front hall sits the yellow "Thanksgiving Bowl". As each member of a family arrives she writes an "I'm thankful for" note and places it in the bowl. Grandma reads the notes during dessert and family members guess who wrote each note. The Thanksgiving, the bowl is accidentally left outside, where it rolls off on month by month series of adventures and then returns to where its journey began. -- Summary by Mrs. Chauncey (Holiday, Sequence of events.)
Grandma's Feather Bed by Christopher Canyon. Hooray for feather beds! Huge and soft, the perfect place to play ... and before you know it ... sleep. One of John Denver’s most popular songs brings back favorite childhood memories. This is the fourth in Dawn Publications' highly acclaimed John Denver & Kids picture book series, adapted and illustrated by award-winning artist Christopher Canyon. The hardback edition comes with a CD of John Denver singing this children's classic. -- Amazon Editorial Review (Music & Literacy)
Gentle Giant Octopus
by Karen Wallace
Kindergarten-Grade 2-Brief text and watercolor paintings describe how a female giant octopus moves, protects herself, and lays her eggs. The illustrations have a sense of drama; in one picture, the octopus fills the whole page, her long tentacles flying behind her in the blue-green ocean. At one point, a crab attacks and an eel rips off a tentacle with its daggerlike teeth. Each page has just a few sentences in large print, but they provide a basic introduction to the animal and many interesting facts. Although this book is classified as nonfiction, the information is related as a story. -- School Library Journal excerpt (Non-Fiction, Informational Text)
Welcome to the World of Octopuses
by Diane Swanson.
With no bones and no nose, octopuses use their eight long arms for touching, smelling and even tasting! While some are as small as a paper clip, others can grow to the length of three doors. These intelligent animals enjoy living by themselves and eating a lot of seafood -- crabs, scallops and fish. Filled with amazing facts and color photographs, this book provides a fascinating look at the undersea world. Each book in the Welcome to the World of Series introduces children to wildlife through color photographs, lively description and amazing facts.-- Amazon excerpt (Non-Fiction, Informational Text)
An Octopus is Amazing
by Patricia Lauber.
An assortment of facts are presented in this charming introduction to the truly amazing octopus. Lauber's chatty, fact-filled text makes the book a good read-aloud, and Keller's amusing and colorful drawings enhance it by depicting exactly what is described on each page--a perfect match of text and illustration..... -- School Library Journal excerpt (Non-Fiction, Informational Text)
Little Panda by Joanne Ryder. K Ryder introduces readers to Hua Mei via photographs taken inside the panda den, and then shows how her days unfold during her first year of life at the San Diego Zoo. The large sans-serif text is infused with adjectives and exclamations, giving a storylike quality to the primary narrative: "Look at her! She is sitting and standing now, eager to take her first steps." Smaller, italicized text gives a factual account of her biological development such as, "Pandas are born blind.-It can take up to four months before a panda will take its first steps." Full-color photographs capture the adorable youngster and her mother engaging in typical panda antics.-- School Library Journal excerpt (Non-Fiction, Informational Text)
Panda Goes to School
by Jaye Morrow
Panda is getting ready for his first day of shcool. He begins to worry that Mama won't be able to get along without him. Will she be lonely when he is at school? Who will help her to make lunch? Mama reassures Panda that he need not worry. When Panda gets to school, his fears overwhelm him. With the help of a kind teacher and a wise mother, Panda makes it through the day. -- Mrs. C.
(Unit: Individual Development & Identity - Family, Independence)
Lola At the Library
by Anna McQuinn
Lola recounts trips to the library with her mom. Every Tuesday she packs up last week's books and her library card. She walks to the library, enjoys story time, and selects new books. On the way home, Lola and her mom enjoy a snack together. Mom shares the foam on her cappuccino. The day ends with mom reading Lola one of her books as a bedtime story. A great introduction to the library, comfort of ritual, and parent-child bonding. Bold illustrations and clear, simple text make it the perfect read-aloud for Pre-School and Kindergarten. ... -- Mrs. C.
(Unit: Individual Development & Identity - Family Rituals, Independence)