Published by Simon and Schuster for Young Readers 2012
Source: Library Copy
The Twilight Zone comes to the carrot patch in this clever picture book parable about a rabbit who fears his favorite treats are out to get him. Jasper Rabbit loves carrots—especially Crackenhopper Field carrots. He eats them on the way to school.
He eats them going to Little League. He eats them walking home. Until the day the carrots start following him…or are they?
I’m not sure how this 2013 Caldecott Honor Book slipped under my radar when it was first released but I am so glad that it was brought to my attention this week.
Jasper raids the carrot fields on a daily basis until he starts to think that the carrots are stalking him! Tension builds page after page as the reader sees what Jasper does…carrots everywhere, but his parents don’t seem to believe him. A great homage to bedtime experiences for many children and their parents (perhaps with monsters instead of carrots) and a fantastic twist in the end make this a dynamic read aloud for many different ages. Peter Brown’s illustrations are a compliment to the story creating a slightly ominous atmosphere, that has this “film noir” feel to it. Creepy Carrots! deserves to be more than just a seasonal “Halloween” spooky read and would be a great addition to any home library or children’s programming shelf. A new favourite. Creepy Carrots!
When a tiny fish shoots into view wearing a round blue topper (which happens to fit him perfectly), trouble could be following close behind. So it’s a good thing that enormous fish won’t wake up. And even if he does, it’s not like he’ll ever know what happened. . . .
Jon Klassen’s first book “I Want My Hat Back” is an award winner and I believe this, his second book, is destined to be one as well. His understated style and simplified text has appeal for both children and their parents.
Little fish is the narrator, but the pictures tell a different story than the text. Is the little fish really safe? The illustrations are done in earth tones, full of texture and expressive which adds a nice dimension to each page.
Too often picture books tie things up in neat little packages for kids, but in “This is Not My Hat”, Jon Klassen allows the reader to to come to their own conclusions. The possibilities for extension activities in story time at the library or in a classroom setting are endless. One to buy for your personal library. Highly Recommended.
To learn more about the author and his books visit his website:
A clever counting book and fable unlike any other and winner of the 2011 Governor General’s Award for Illustration. Ten birds are trying to figure out how to get to the other side of the river. The bird they call “Brilliant” devises a pair of stilts. The bird they call “Highly Satisfactory” engineers a raft. One by one, nine resourceful birds make the crossing until a single bird is left behind ? the one they call “Needs Improvement.” This bird’s solution proves surprising ? and absurdly simple.
Aside from the stunning pen and ink illustrations, this book has so many wonderful aspects. Numeracy (Math Literacy) as it is a counting book. Problem solving, critical thinking as using the resources around them each bird creates a way across the river until only one is left. I can see this inspiring many “build & construct” activities and contraption building at home and in the classroom. I think one of the more outstanding parts of the story is the message within it. Each bird is given a label “Brilliant, Excellent, Highly Satisfactory” as they design their way across the river. It is the last bird that has been labelled “Needs Improvement” that seems to uncover the most obvious way to cross. I love the subtlety to that message. It’s done in a way that isn’t preachy, as some children’s books can be… it reminds us that labels don’t mean anything. When I’ve shared with families, they children often shout out but birds can fly!! They’ve found a way across too! I’ll be presenting a special program for families in November based on the book.
Ten Birds is my communities “Let’s Read” selection for 2012. Each year a book is selected for families around the region to share together. There are special events, contests and author events planned. For more information about the program visits here : Let’s Read.
Ten Tiny Toes by Todd Tarpley, Illustrated by Marc Brown
Published by Little Brown Books for Young Readers
September 4th 2012
I am very picky when it come to books I share during my baby time programs at the Library. I was delighted when I opened Ten Tiny Toes. Yes, it’s as sweet as it sounds. Is there anything better than the tiny toes of a baby?
” They kicked and they crawled,
they dangles and danced,
they wiggled and wriggled
they preened and they pranced”
The simple story follows little ones as they grow through the years. The fact that in the end the book comes full circle will delight parents. Marc Brown has done a wonderful job with the illustrations. Large images grace every page and are full of texture. The perfect length for sharing during story time or a quiet moment at home; Ten Tiny Toes is one to buy for your home library and would make a fabulous baby gift.
You can take the experience one step further by adding a simple rhyme either before or after your read. This Little Piggy or This Little Cow are always favourites.
This little cow eats grass;
(Wiggle baby’s big toe)
This little cow eats hay;
(Wiggle baby’s second toe)
This little cow drinks water;
(Wiggle baby’s third toe)
This little cow runs away;
(Wiggle baby’s fourth toe)
This little cow does nothing
But laze around all day;
(Wiggle baby’s little toe)
We’ll tickle, tickle, tickle her
Because she lazes around all day.
(Tickle baby from top to bottom!)
Another activities I enjoy doing with the babies and their caregivers-usually during our last program of the session is making footprints. I pre-cut card stock in a variety of colours and use washable white paint and a sponge. I set up a table with the paint and cards and then another with a wash bin with warm water and paper towels.
Parents come to me at the painting station and then I assist them as they paint their child’s foot and press it gently on the card. It’s a bit of work, but a popular activity and the parents are delighted with their “souvenir” of their time in class. This would also work as an activity for home.