It's been a while since I reviewed any picture books here, but that's not for lack of having any good ones in my hands.
In fact, there have been so many to come my way in recent weeks, that I barely know where to start.
I am lucky to still have Little Sister as a willing audience as I read to her before bed each night, and she is a good litmus test to determine whether my students at school will enjoy a book or not.
1. Goodnight Already by Jory John is a fun book to read. Bear is so tired he can barely stay awake. Duck is bound and determined to keep him up, since Duck is not one bit tired. The text is short, and Little Sister and I took turns reading each animals lines.
2. A Perfectly Messed Up Story by Patrick McDonnell - this was a fantastic read aloud with my students as I shared the story of how Little Louie's story was ruined by peanut butter, jelly, fingerprints, scribbling and orange juice. I am also looking forward to using this one in the fall to teach book care. And for anyone wanting a book containing speech bubbles, this is also a good choice.
3. Up In The Garden and Down in the Dirt by Kate Messner - Messner never ceases to amaze me. She continues to churn out quality literature for children at a rapid-fire pace. This is a non-fiction follow up to Over and Under the Snow (which I absolutely loved), and gets into the idea of planting a garden and all the creepy, crawly things in the dirt that help plants grow. I also loved the informational section Messner includes at the end of the book about gardening and plants.
4. Sam and Dave Dig a Hole by Mac Barnett - this has got to be hands down one of the best read aloud books I've come across all year. I've used this one with lower elementary students, and upper elementary kids, too, and all of them get into the story about two boys digging a hole, attempting to find something spectacular. As they dig, they change directions, split up and yet always seem to just miss the big diamond waiting for them. This one was a Caldecott winner, but the story was just as intriguing as its illustrations.
5. Home by Carson Ellis - I love this book for its simplicity - at least of text. The concept of home is explored as Ellis illustrates a variety of houses that people inhabit in a variety of settings. Not a lengthy read by any means, the teacher librarian in me sees this one as a great springboard to a unit on homes around the world or habitats.
6. Before After by Matthias
8. I Don't Want to Be a Frog by Dave Petty, illustrations by Mike Boldt - cute and fun is how I would describe this book. Frog doesn't want to be a frog. As he picks a variety of animals he would rather be, his father explains to him what is missing from him and why this won't work. Of course, being a frog is much better than being a fly!
9. Click, Clack, Peep by Doreen Cronin - any installment in the Click, Clack Moo series by Cronin is welcome and this is a perfect spring book as the barnyard animals greet a baby duck. Unfortunately, Baby Duck isn't a very good sleeper, and Duck resorts to some extra measures to get her baby to sleep.