Cathy Mere (Reflect andRefine) and Mandy Robek (Enjoy andEmbrace Learning) are hosting our favorite PB(picture books) 10 for 10 sharing today! There is amazing sharing, your lists will grow!
It’s actually hard not to share the books I’ve shared before here and here; they are still favorites, but here are ten more. This time I focused on the goal of sharing stories that show diversity in some way. It is important to me to show students that there are many kinds of people who accomplish wonderful things in different ways. It’s a good thing to celebrate differences.
Coming On Home Soon – written by Jacqueline Woodson and illustrated by E.B. Lewis
Through tough times, some children have to give up their parents for a while. This story tells about Ada Ruth whose mother, during wartime, has found a job in Chicago, so has to leave the daughter and her grandmother. They do a lot of waiting for news, first letter and there is mention of those-in war-who don’t “come on home”. For us today, this will touch children whose parents are far away, serving our country. Illustrations are gorgeous, realistic watercolor.
The Goat In The Rug - written by Geraldine, as told to Charles L. Blood & Martin Link and illustrated by Nancy Winslow Parker
This is a true story of a weaver and her goat who lived in the Navajo Nation at Window Rock, Arizona. The story is a how-to book, telling the tale of shearing the mohair from a goat, who tells the tale, to taking the rug off the loom. It uses the proper terms for preparing the wool for weaving like cleaning, carding, spinning and dyeing. Amazingly, it is not silly, but although we know goats cannot talk, the illustrations and the story show the close relationship between natural objects and their use by Native Americans.
We All Went on Safari - written by Laurie Krebs and illustrated by Julia Cairns
A wonderful new counting book takes readers on a journey through Tanzania, learning about the animals that live there and some names that are given to the children by the Masaai natives who live there. Beautiful and colorful illustrations are painted in bright primary colors with children walking along 'on safari' as they observe the animals on the journey. The backmatter is extensive, offering a short piece about the Maasai people, more Swahili words like the animal names along with the meaning of the children's names. It's a good book for beginners to learn about people from other countries.
Brave Irene – written and illustrated by William Steig
You must have read at least one of William Steig's books. This is not a funny one, but I thought I'd share that I've used this in a variety of ways, and lately for studying using strong verbs in writing. I taught the lesson to students who are 2nd and 3rd graders. It can also be used for predictions. It tells the story of Irene, who is taking a dress to a duchess from her seamstress mother, who is ill. The struggles she faces are tough, but Irene is a brave soul. It's just a terrific book with some important lessons to learn.
The Camel Who Took A Walk – written by Jack Twordov and illustrated by Roger Duvoisin
This is an old book that my children and now my grandchildren have loved, a simple story of a camel walking through a jungle, building such suspense as four animals make plans assuming the camel will walk their way. Young children are so excited as the pages turn, and gleeful at the ending. It gives a brief introduction to a jungle and animals who live there and an excellent way to build suspense a little at a time for young writers.
How To – written and illustrated by Julie Morstad
This book was specifically recommended to me by a Goodreads friend and I'm so glad she did! I purchased it and read it, then read again. It's that marvelous, helps get the creative juices going, as I imagine it will be of great value across the grades, for creative writing and poetry. The illustrations are rather whimsical line drawings with a little color, of all kinds of things that may appear boring until one sees the illustration. "How-to make a sandwich is just one example, where several children lie between blankets and quilts on top of each other, hence, a sandwich. I can just imagine this as both a writing and art project, with students doing their own "How-To" illustrations!
Forest Has A Song – poems written by Amy Ludwig Vanderwater and illustrated by Robbin Gourley
If you love the forest like I do, you will also love what Amy and Robbin have offered in this new book of poems. They have shown the real things, like in the poem Puff, telling about those earthy wonders that one finds in the damp and dark of the forest, emitting a little cloud of spores when squeezed. And the poem Squirrel, pleading for the whereabouts of its secret stash. Amy's poems take us from entering the forest in full flower with a kind invitation, "I'm here./Come visit./ Please?" through the autumn in poems like Maples In October, to winter celebrated in poems like Snowflake Voices. And then there are the magical forest voices which appear in an young owl's voice, First Flight; along with the beautiful Lady's Slipper, named in the poem as "Forest Cinderella." Robbin's illustrations take us further into the poems with her beautiful and sometimes whimsical illustrations. A young girl is "us", wandering through, seeing all the wonder of this forest, and keeping the theme of the invitation to visit, we can pretend we're there too! For those ‘city’ kids who rarely get to be that child in the woods, this would be a lovely introduction to the forest.
The Matchbox Diary – written by Paul Fleischman and illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
I've owned this book for a while, but never took time to read it until recently. I immediately wanted to create my own unique diary. Wonderful teller of stories Paul Fleischman tells about a great-grandfather showing his own story of immigration through small objects saved in matchboxes like a ticket from his first baseball game or an olive pit his mother gave him to suck on to try to alleviate hunger when there was no food. It's a story made even more real by Ibatoulline's beautiful full page illustrations. I can visualize using this as a text in writing in a variety of genres.
Jouanah, A Hmong Cinderella – adapted by Jewell Reinhart Coburn with Tzexa Cherta Lee and illustrated by Anne Sibley O’Brien
In certain studies of literature, I’ve helped students study different cultures through experiences with various Cinderella stories. I’ve read several books about the Hmong culture and love this book because it holds some of those cultural parts, like the great respect for elders and the idea that spirits guide us in our daily lives. There is much to discuss in this book and to compare with other Cinderella stories. Illustrations of the beautiful costumes and traditions of the village celebrations are filled with details.
Tia Isa Wants A Car – written by Meg Medina and illustrated by Claudio Munoz
Sharing books about people who don’t have a lot of money, but save for something important, like a car, and still send money back to family in their former country are to be respected for their sacrifice and discipline as they save. A little sister tells the story about her older sister, Tia Isa, who wants a car so they all can go to the beach. There are some sweet actions by the little sister in the book, doing what she can do to help. Some Spanish is included, but the country of origin is not told. The illustrations are watercolor, simple and realistic.