Sunday, January 21, 2018

It's Monday!

        Visit Jen at Teach MentorTexts and Kellee and Ricki at UnleashingReaders to discover books you'll love!  Thanks to Jen, Kellee, and Ricki who share so much with us by taking time to support this meme!

       Last week was warm, then yesterday we had more snow in one day than we've had in over a year, 5 or 6 inches! It was a lovely day to be home and for skiers up in the mountains, but perhaps not for those who had to work. Nevertheless, it is needed!  Happy Reading!
 
          It’s so hard to move, hard for everyone but especially kids who have to change schools. This time, it’s Lily and her sister who must face that first day at a “new” school. Neither feels very good, but their mom just thinks it’s first-day nerves. Sadly, it isn’t, so Lily spends the first recess with new kids and then throws up playing four square, some on Darby’s shoes, a girl that might have been a new friend.
           As the year moves on, Lily does become friends with Darby who lives on the other side of the lake where Lily has moved, but when Darby’s long-time friend Jill moves back from London, the days take on new flavors. Jill takes on her old role as the boss and getting the others in a lot of trouble. There are ghosts, name-calling, a nice teacher and a not-so-nice recess lady, and strains of friendships we adults may not always realize happens. Some fun comic illustrations (supposedly done by Lily, budding artist) add to the fun, ghost stories surrounding the lake and Darby’s house (being written down by her dad), and lots and lots of frogs add to the storyline. One thing I enjoyed was seeing the parent attitudes, some looser than others, but often with a humorous slant. Lily was talking to her mother about how much she hates this new place. Her mother claimed a wider perspective and said she knew things would get better. Lily thinks, “I don’t know why Mom thinks that I don’t have perspective. I learned it in art.” Another great thing is when Lily finally decides to make decisions for herself and even helps Darby make changes, too. It felt as if anyone reading it could gain from “her” perspective!  
          Often, making friends doesn't take long but learning to keep them while not agreeing on everything they want to do is a challenge. It’s also not easy to speak up when one just wants to crawl into a shell. With Lily’s strong first-person 
voice, Leslie Patricelli has written a book that will connect with young readers and work well as a read aloud. The story is for older elementary, maybe third through fifth.  Thanks to Candlewick Press for the arc!

 I wanted to share this wonderful and brief poetry by Myra Cohn Livingston before January ends. We have begun the year and this is a lovely picture book that celebrates all the months. Will Hillenbrand fills the pages with one highlight of the month, like a box kite in March, picnics in July.



         Complete directions, if you only look carefully, you may find one. It’s a book full of whimsy, maybe magic, and it’s delightful. The matter-of-fact hand-hiding-a-giggle text how-to by Kate Banks is dependent on the marvelous, imaginative illustrations of Boris Kulikov. I just wrote about the habit of “looking long” and this is one book that requires it. Readers will giggle as they point and say “there! There it is! And “it” might not be an elephant. Wait to read and see!
              It’s a social whirl that gets more serious as the story moves along. Nerdy Birdy, whom we loved in the first book, has become a “tweetster” and tries to show how fun it can be to his best friend, Vulture. He’s proud that he has 500 friends, one from Iceland, and a flamingo too! As he spends more time “tweetstero-ing” Vulture becomes bored, then furious, because Nerdy Birdy posted a funny picture of Vulture eating his “ew” lunch. Conversations about social media and doing the right thing in friendship will bring big discussions. It wil be fun to share this with a wide range of ages, to discover “perhaps” different reactions to these two friends’ actions. Matt Davies is back with his brash and fun illustrations. It’s hard to misunderstand both Nerdy Birdy’s and Vulture’s feelings during any of the predicaments that occur.


      The author, Brenda Reeves Sturgis writes that she wanted a way to give a voice to children who are homeless, living with their mother and with their father in a second shelter just for men. And of all the sweet things included or happening, they are "still" a family. Illustrated in  child-like drawings, this young girl talks about the rows of cots and the noise, standing in line for long minutes for meals and playing with another girl and sharing her doll. Each one gives it a name. It's her birthday and one candle, one cupcake makes just enough for one wish. And the picture shows her room and a dog, and they are still a family. It's a simple presentation, one that will be easy for adults to read and discuss this with young children. 
    
           I certainly love moon books and this is one to pair with Windows by Julia Denos and The Way Home In The Night by Akiko Miyakoshi. Each tells a tale about lovely, and interesting, neighborhoods in the night, people walking by, storefronts, and peeks into windows. This time in the early evening, a mother and her young boy leave their home to go for a walk to look for the moon. He learns that there is only one moon, and it has a reflection in puddles, and those "glittery dots" are stars. They find the moon, and then, wow, it disappears. The simple questions and answers, a quiet walk and then they're back at the stoop, yawning and ready for bed. Blanca Gómez illustrates the story with creative collages, adding peeks into the windows to see parents putting children to bed, people looking out, dancers at nightly practice at the studio. This book about the moon will bring joy and curiosity to young children. 


Still Reading: Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

And starting another #MustReadin2018Beyond The Bright Sea - Lauren Wolk

20 comments:

  1. I adore this list of books! My own children and I love to look at the moon together. Even though they are in 6th and 4th grades now, we still love reading Jane Yolen's Owl Moon. I need to check out City Moon!

    Thank you for sharing this list.

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    1. You're welcome, Trina. As you saw, I love those moon books, too. Enjoy this one with your children! You might also love "If You Were The Moon" by Laura Purdie Salas!

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  2. Best Buds Under Frogs is on my #imwayr list this week, too! It's a fun book and one that will be accessible for readers in the upper elementary grades who need text with lots of illustrations to break up their reading. I have never read Calendar, but a poetry book that I use a lot is Once Around the Sun by Bobbi Katz. It has a poem for each month.

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    1. Thanks for that title, Lisa. I will look for it, probably find it at my library!

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  3. I will keep an eye out for Best Buds. I did put all the pic books on hold at my library. Thanks for the suggestions.

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    1. You're welcome. Hope you enjoy each one!

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  4. City Moon looks really special - I have Still a Family in my radar, and waiting for it to be available in our library. Nerdy Birdy Tweets sounds hilarious. :)

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    1. All are special in unique ways, Myra. Nerdy Birdy holds a special message in this day of social media use taking time from friendships in real time.

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  5. I loved Nerdy Birdy Tweets! The social media aspect of it is so important as younger and younger kids are getting involved in apps like Facebook and SnapChat. I definitely need to check out the other books on your list. Have a great week and stay warm and safe.

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    1. Thanks, Jana, I agree that Nerdy Birdy may help send a good message to younger kids.

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  6. We carry most of these at our store. Your reviews actually make me want to read them!

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    1. I hope you read and enjoy them, Earl! Thank you!

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  7. Can't wait to read Still a Family. This is a book that so many children need to hear. Thank you for sharing that title with us.

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    1. I was so happy to find, then read it too. Enjoy!

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  8. Nerdy Birdy Tweets. Yes. I must have this one. Also, Still a Family. This is an important read, I was thinking of my friends who I made lunch for last spring, and often wonder where they are. Thanks for sharing the titles.

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    1. Both good to read and ponder for us adults, Kendra and then to share with as many children as we can. I hope you love them! Thanks!

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  9. So many great books here! I want to get a copy of Calendar! I have had Nerdy Bird Tweets on my list for awhile, too. I love Nerdy Bird!

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    1. Thanks, Ricki. Calendar is just right for young ones just trying to understand a year, and being by Myra Cohn Livingston makes it more special. Hope you enjoy both!

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  10. Nerdy Bird Tweets has such an important message about social media for youngsters. I love how Aaron Reynolds achieves this so sweetly. I adored The Way Home In The Night by Akiko Miyakoshi so I'll be on the lookout for City Moon and Windows. Neither are in my library system.

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    1. Yes! to Nerdy Birdy Tweets! It's great. I loved each one of these "night" books, hope you will be able to read the others, Cheriee. I did love The Way Home In The Night, too! Thanks!

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