Another of my favorite seasonal picture books is this companion book to Baby Bear Sees Blue. In an autumn landscape, a curious bear cub asks Mama Bear questions about the sounds of animals around them, and then counts the animals as they make their preparations for the winter.
Among my very favorite picture books are those with the theme of changing seasons. This story by Wisconsin author Miller is at the top of the list. At a fall farm market with her mother and father, Sophie picks out a yellow squash. The squash is just the right size for Sophie to hold, and--it turns out—to love. “I’m glad we met,” says Sophie.
A wide-eyed spotted snake from the zoo wanders into “the wrong pit,” and wends its way among the instruments of an orchestra: brass, winds, strings, percussion. It is impressed by all the sights and sounds—and hiding places: charmed by the oboe, cozy in the tuba. The snake’s fascination is not returned by the musicians, however, and the zookeeper is summoned. Time to hide! As the musicians warm up their instruments, the snake likens the sounds to those of other animals in the zoo.
Believing is magical, and Amy Krouse Rosenthal is a champion of always trusting magic. In Uni the Unicorn, Rosenthal invites you to discover the beauty in believing, no matter how ridiculous an idea might seem.
Uni is a unicorn. On the surface, she looks and acts like your typical unicorn. She has a beautiful mane, sparkling eyes and golden hooves. She even brings wishes to life.
“Storywoods” blog creator Rebecca Dudley uses her expert photography and multi-media diorama art in this beautiful wordless picture book story featuring Hank, a sweet little animal of the woods. While on a walk, Hank finds an egg on the ground beneath a bird’s nest. When he fails in his valiant attempts to return the egg to the nest before nightfall, Hank cares for the egg and keeps it warm until he can try again the next day. This time, he has some help, and makes new friends as a result.
“Yawns are sneaky. They can creep up on you when you least expect them.” And--yawns can lead to pajamas, bedtime stories, lullabies and tucking in—whether you’re ready or not! The book serves as a witty warning for all those readers who are definitely not ready for bed, with challenges to resist anything cozy, cuddly, sleepy or snuggly. But, also heed my warning: this book will make you yawn, not because it’s boring, but because--as author Hélène Boudreau knows all too well--yawns are contagious! This charming funny book with the lively, distinctive ca
In this clever, Christmassy take on a beloved fairytale, Papa, Mama and Baby are polar bears; when they are out walking, waiting for their Christmas pudding to cool, a certain special visitor comes to call, hungry and tired after finishing most of his holiday rounds. Santa Claus thinks the pudding has been left for him, and thereby hangs the rest of the tale! Santa, the bears, and their cozy house and surroundings are charmingly detailed in soft watercolors by mother-daughter duo Jane and Brooke Dyer.
A traditional nursery rhyme is given a cute Christmas twist with a little help from Santa Claus, and a lot from de Las Casas and Stone-Barker. Based on “The House that Jack Built,” and similar to the team's Halloween version, The House that Witchy Built, The House that Santa Built is a rollicking romp of rhythm, with elves and reindeer and snow and—of course—children taking part of the arctic antics in and out of Santa’s castle. The cut-paper collage illustrations are fun and fanciful. There are plenty of sound effects that make this a p
These opposites, and other concepts, are delightfully explored in this wordless picture book by artist Lizi Boyd. The front cover depicts a boy, dog at his side, peering out the window of a cheery house, while birds and other creatures fly and frolic in the yard. On the title page, the boy is at the open door, inviting the reader/viewer into his peaceful, happy world of dreams, plans, projects and play. Inside, he contentedly makes preparations for spring planting, while out the windows, two snowmen are in view. Each subsequent page shows a scene from a room in
I love Jan Thomas’ silly, charming books with her bold, colorful comic-style illustrations, from Rhyming Dust Bunnies to Is Everyone Ready for Fun?Let’s Sing a Lullaby with the Brave Cowboy is her latest to date, and in my opinion, another hit. The cowboy of the title is actually not so brave; in his attempts to settle his cows down for the night, he interrupts his own lullaby with startled exclamations about what he imagines is lurking in the dark. The cows calm and reassure him--until, that is, something really IS in the shadows!
April is National Poetry Month! Celebrate it, the Fox Cities Book Festival, nature, too, with a sweet and simple poem by versatile author Marion Dane Bauer. Its lines provide the text for this beautiful picture book, with intimate portraits of various wild baby animals and animal families by renowned nature photographer Stan Tekiela (one of the featured authors at this year’s Fox Cities Book Festival). Tekiela captures on camera many young critters, from slow turtle hatchlings to a frisky cougar kitten; from a soft rabbit kit to prickly porcupettes; from little possums hit
Meet Wendell, Wilmer, Willy Woody and Walter—5 bird-like juggler brothers who perform together in a hilarious stage show, while demonstrating basic math concepts such as counting, addition, subtraction and comparison. The reader audience will learn as they laugh at the Wing Wing Brothers’ antics and comic appearance. Parents and teachers will appreciate that the book meets the Common Core Standards for kindergarten mathematics; kids will appreciate the goofiness and fun.
Part of the Touch, Look, and Learn! series, Animals Talk features wonderful single, textured illustrations of animals that make noise. Very young children will enjoy cuddling up to share this book while they feel the raised surfaces in the illustrations and make the fun animals sounds on each page. Try others in this series including Animals Go, Colors, and Counting.
We’re in the midst of a white winter wonderland in Wisconsin. But for those who long for something green, you’ll find it, in all its many shades, in this lovely picture book. Author/artist Seeger combines simple rhyming text, lush paint-on-canvas illustrations and with cleverly positioned cut out accents, inviting readers to explore and enjoy the presence (and sometimes absence) of green in nature and in everyday objects.
This picture book explores the many types of quiet a child may encounter in their everyday lives. Quiet can be cozy and nice, shameful and remorseful, or shocking and scary. Liwska portrays these different types of quiet experiences with furry woodland friends that are drawn with a beautifully detailed hand. Children will relate to many of the examples of quiet, especially “bedtime kiss quiet.” A great story for bedtime.
Attention-grabbing large colorful pictures of dragons and a spirited plotline that parallels a child’s morning routine will win over young children in Jane Yolen’s latest picture book. A small knight awakens huge sleeping dragons, feeds them pancakes with a catapult, brushes their fangs and hurries them out so they can fly him to Knight School.
A little brown bunny and a little blue bird become friends one spring and play with one another until it is time for the bird to fly south. The friends miss each other through the long winter months until they are reunited again the following spring. This book showcases the theme of friendship with a beautiful message that distance can’t hinder friendship. Berger’s illustrations are the showpiece of this picture book, containing backdrops of loose-leaf and graph paper, newspaper clippings embedded in objects, and illustrations that look textured.
Fear is a natural part of growing up. Parr recognizes that sometimes children are scared because they don’t understand something. In his story, he recommends that children tell someone why they are scared and maybe after, they won’t be so scared anymore. The book touches on many prevalent childhood fears like being afraid of the dark and monsters or scary first-time experiences like riding on an airplane or being separated from a parent for the first time. Each fearful experience Parr writes about includes a positive result or answer to the fear.
How to Hug is a complete hugging manual for children. It includes instructions on how to properly hug both humans and animals in a comical approach. It is the perfect story for those that hug too long, those that hug too tight, or even those that try to hug the cat! Christy’s humorous illustrations supplement proper hugging techniques on each page. So prepare children for the many impending hugs they will receive this holiday season by sharing How to Hug.
Young children will delight in this charming story of the famous American cook Julia Child living in Paris with her husband Paul and her mischievous tortoiseshell cat, Minette. Julia Child learns to cook with passion and endless energy. Minette inhales the delicious aromas and dines on the most scrumptious meals, yet being a cat, still prefers a good fresh mouse.
Everyone will find something to giggle about with this great CD, one of many produced in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the“Music for Little People” Company. From great action songs like Raffi’s “Shake Your Sillies Out,” and “Everyone Loves to Dance” by Aaron Nigel Smith; funny story songs like “I’m My Own Grandpa,” sung by the late great Chet Atkins, and “My Name is Cheech, the School Bus Driver” by comedian Cheech Marin; new treatments of old favorites such as Tom Glazer’s “On Top of Spaghetti,” sung by the Persuasions; and other great tracks by Buckwheat Zydeco,
It’s Christmas Eve and Santa is on his way to deliver toys around the world. Suddenly his reindeer harness breaks, sending him downward “like a BIG, FAT, JOLLY RED SKYROCKET!” Santa crashes into a barn and recruits the barnyard animals. A magical journey ensues with an old dog, cows, sheep, a goat, a horse, and a pig pulling his sleigh. Bright, colorful, luminous pictures draw young children into this riotous tale.
Uh-oh! Little Owl has fallen from the nest and cannot find Mommy! With the help of a dizzy but well-meaning squirrel, Little Owl sees many animals with some of the same traits as Mommy Owl, but that are definitely not her. Whooo--I mean, who-- knows where she is? Originally published in Europe with the title A Bit Lost, this book features gentle humor, charming animal characters and simple landscapes in bright colors with contrasting earth tones. It's great for reading aloud, with enough of a pattern to make it good for beginning readers as well.
With rhyming text and whimsical but natural landscapes featuring two cheery, bright red birds, this beautiful picture book by the author/artist is a celebration of both the winter season and the idea of individuality: while there are distinct similarities among various things in nature--snowflakes, leaves, animals and plants of the same species, even people—no two are exactly alike. Observant children will be able to point out the subtle differences in the birds as they flit through the pages with their antics.
Heart-warming story of eight year old Johnny’s love for his grandparents’ Connecticut tree farm and a very special antique toy horse. He dreams of giving the toy horse to his little brother, Liam, but the horse is lost. Wishing for a Christmas miracle, Johnny realizes that no gift will equal that little white horse, but he searches for another just in case. A loving, family story to share during the Christmas season.
One of the “My First” holiday series by popular author/artist Karen Katz, this picture book is told in the first person by a perky, round-faced little girl as she describes the many ways her family, friends and neighbors celebrate the seven days of Kwanzaa. The book is divided in seven sections, with a Swahili word or phrase for each of the principles that give meaning to the celebration, along with a pronunciation guide, and clear, simple descriptions of the activities. Brilliantly-colored folk art illustrations and borders add to the liveliness of the family’s festivities.