One of our primary missions here at waddleeahchaa.com is to get great children’s literature into the hands of children. Do you have all the books of your wildest imagination? If the answer is yes, consider winning books here and donating them to a needy child, a children’s shelter, a foster home or a church. Each week we highlight and GIVEAWAY a book to one lucky winner. (At the end of the post we’ll give the details on how to win the book of your choice!)
This week is all about wonderful read aloud books for back to school. Some of these might not be the newest books on the shelf but they are my children’s new favorite read alouds. We check these books out over and over again. We hope you find a few new favorites.
1. On a Beam of Light A Story of Albert Einstein
by Jennifer Berne
What? A read aloud biography about Albert Einstein? What better way to begin the year than with an inspiring story about one of our greatest thinkers?! Albert hardly said a word. He was so different. Was something wrong? When Albert’s father gave him a compass, he suddenly knew there were mysteries in the world. Jennifer Berne tells the encouraging story of a boy who didn’t want to be like other students. “He wanted to discover the hidden mysteries in the world.” The book ends by challenging children to wonder, think and imagine. Isn’t that what education should be all about?
I can’t move on without mentioning the illustrations. The are unusual and dreamy. Radunsky, the illustrator, was some how able to create uniquely, imaginative drawings that are befitting of Albert Einstein.
2. Big Hugs Little Hugs
by Felicia Bond
Of course we all know Felicia Bond as the bestselling artist of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. Her adorable book Big Hugs Little Hugs is for the wee little ones in our audience. The simple opposites text invites little ones to chime in as you read aloud. The totally unique collage art shows quite a variety of animals hugging. The message about the universal language of love is plain and simple . . . Everyone hugs . . . all over the world.
Take a peek at the illustrations. They are bold and beautiful and fabulously different.
3. Roslyn Rutabaga and the Biggest Hone on Earth!
by Marie – Louse Gay
Roslyn is a dreamer. Roslyn is creative. Roslyn in tenacious. Roslyn is loved by an encouraging father. This is a recipe for one darn endearing story!
I love Roslyn Rutabaga because Roslyn is my child! Each and every day my children kick-off their sheets and say to the world, “Look out world, I’m going to do something outrageously dreamy today!” My goal as a mother and teacher is to be as open and encouraging as Roslyn’s father. When Roslyn announces at breakfast that she is going to dig the Biggest Hole on Earth, one that even goes to the South Pole where she’ll meet a penguin, Roselyn’s father simple comments, “You’d better take a sweater. It gets pretty cold at the south Pole.”
That’s what I’m talkin’ about! Children of the world . . . You start dreaming, you start digging and don’t you ever give up! Have an adventure each and every day of your life!
by Leslie Helakoski
Just for starters, Woolbur is cute. Not a little bit cute. But all out adorably cute! My favorite picture is when he cards his own wool. And yet, my favorite might just be when he dyes his hair blue. Or is it when he stays up all night thinking and thinking and thinking.
Are you a free spirit? Do you know a little free spirit? Do you want to encourage a little free spirit? I can say yes, yes and yes to all of the above! Woolbur NEVER follows the flock. Woolbur is always too busy thinking, dreaming and experimenting to follow the flock. Consequently, Maa and Paa are about to pull out their wool. Can you relate? In the end, everyone learns to embrace the free spirit side of Woolbur.
5. Pet the Cat I Love My White Shoes
by Eric Litwin
I am selfishly including Pet the Cat because he reminds me of my time training teachers in Cambodia. (The sweetest teachers in the world!) What fun I had introducing the teachers in Cambodia to Pete the Cat. It was a highlight of my trip to hear them singing along with Pete and his white shoes. I love my white shoes, I love my white shoes, I love my white shoes. What fun!
Most of you have probably met Pete by now. A truly great read aloud book invites children to join in on the fun. Well, none does it better than Pete the Cat. Pete the Cat is strolling along loving his white shoes when he steps in a large pile of red strawberries. The book invites children to answer the question, “What color did it turn his shoes?” Did Pete cry? Well goodness no. He keeps singing his song, I love my red shoes, I love my red shoes, I love my red shoes. This fun book teaches children to enjoy life and live in the moment.
If you haven’t met Pete, you must have a turn singing his song.
6. Have Fun Molly Lou Melon
by Patty Lovell
Molly Lou Melon has a toy chest overflowing with whoseywhatsits. But then she remembers her grandma telling her that back in the olden days she made dolls out of twigs, leaves and flowers. So Molly Lou Mellon did just that! From there, Molly Lou Mellon makes a dollhouse in her backyard and a car out of a box. One day Molly Lou Mellon hears her new neighbor Gertie saying “I’m bored, bored, BORED!” Molly Lou Mellon frees Gertie from her big screen T.V and cell phone, showing her a big imagination is the best toy of all.
This book sings to my heart! I encourage my children to be the Molly Lou Mellon of the neighborhood. And guess what. Children love the freedom of playing in our big back yard, hunting for creepy critters, rummaging through our recycle, building forts and a letting their imagination be the best toy of all.
7. Sky Color
by Peter H. Reynolds
Disclaimer . . . I love, love, love and adore and love some more Peter Reynold’s books! Okay, with that out of the way let me tell you what I think about Sky Color . . . I love it! Surprised?
Simply put, Marisol learns that the sky is not the limit! Marisol is an artist. She even has her own art gallery (the refrigerator). When Marisol’s teacher challenges her to paint the sky without the color blue, she learns to look at the sky through fresh artistic eyes. I can’t wait for my kiddos to paint the sky during our family vacation to the beach. This book is truly an inspiration.
Reynold’s books encourage children to be artistic rather than perfect. Now that is a message I can stand behind! Look for the other books in his Creatrilogy, Dot and ish.
8. A Home for Bird
Philip C. Stead
I don’t know which I like more: the quirky story or the quirky illustrations. Both are totally terrific, toot, toot, honking fun! (That’s a hint, don’t skip the first page!)
Everything about this books is happiness! Vernon the frog meets a new friend, Bird. However, “Bird is shy . . . but is also a very good listener.” Bird continues to be shy and quite. Vernon begins to worry that Bird misses his home. Vernon sets out on a journey to help Bird find his home. All along the way, Bird says nothing. Finally, Vernon finds a stranger that points the way to Bird’s home. Ta-dah! Bird finally sings.
The story is sweet and the rich illustrations tell the story behind the story. My children first read this story with their Daddy and they could not wait for me to read it the next day. But they were careful not to spoil the surprise at the end of the story. I won’t spoil the cute surprise at the end.
The illustrations are as enchanting and quirky as the story. My children studied the pictures for a long time discussing the art medium. I see an afternoon of art in our future.
9. Dog Loves Drawing
Have you met Dog? Why not? I’ve been telling you about the new love of my life! Dog Loves Drawing intertwines some of my favorite things about school: books, art, storytelling and imagination . . .
Dog’s Aunt Dora sends him a sketchbook and “Dog knew exactly what to do. . . .” He drew a door and then a stickman. Next, Dog and the stickman DOODLE together because that’s the best way to come up with good ideas.You know I’ve got to love a book that doodles. They quickly color-up some new friends and soon they are spilling onto the next page. They drift in and out of pages and through colors of adventure. Before long dog has to dash out to buy some more paper.
The first time we snuggled-up to read this charming book the kiddos oohed and aahed, giggled and cheered. It ended with, “That was a good book! Can we read it again!” We have checked this book out over and over again from the library.
10. Penguin and Pinecone
Are you ready for an oh so sweet love story? This story about friendship is pure and simple. And it’s simplicity is what makes it so lovable. When penguin finds a lonely pine cone a friendship grows. In fact, “Penguin loved his new friend.” But Penguin begins to worry about his new friend. Grandpa tells Penguin that Pinecone belongs in the forest, far, far away. Out of his love for Pinecone, Penguin makes the journey to the forest. He nestles Pinecone in a nest of pine cone needles and a heart made of rocks and says goodbye. (This is when my kiddos got majorly choked-up!) Penguin dreams of the day when he will be reunited with his friend. Upon his return, Penguin finds a wonderful surprise. (This is when my kiddos cheered.) And the moral of the story is, “When you give love away . . . it grows.”
We’re GIVING AWAY one New Favorite Read Aloud Highlighted in This Post
To enter this contest, use the Rafflecopter to answer the following question. After you leave a comment, you can move ahead with more entries.
Answer the following question in the comments section of this post.
Take a peek at our new favorite read aloud books. Which would you like to win and why? (Or just say “Hey.” We’re flexible around here.)
No entries after 11:59 pm Central Time, Sunday, August 11, 2013
The winner must be a resident of The United States.
The winner will be selected at random and announced Monday, August 12, 2013. Check back to claim your prize. It might be you!
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