All the animals are mixed up on the farm, and it’s delightful bedtime confusion. In the Missouri Building Block nominee “Go Sleep in Your Own Bed!” each animal heads to their bed only to find it already occupied! As each is kicked out and goes to their own bed, the cycle continues. The illustrations are done in lovely muted blues, greens and browns, perfect for a sleepy bedtime story. Each animal makes a sound before they’re kicked out of bed, which makes it fun for children to predict what animal is next! This is a great read aloud, as it’s full of fun animal sounds and onomatopoeia. If you want to extend the farm animal fun, try singing this song courtesy of Library Storytime ABC’s:
The Animals on the Farm
(Sung to: “The Wheels on the Bus”)
The cow on the farm says,
“Moo, moo, moo!
Moo, moo, moo!
Moo, moo, moo!”
The cow on the farm says,
“Moo, moo, moo!”
All day long.
Mooooooooooo! Continue reading “2018 Missouri Building Block Nominee: Go Sleep in Your Own Bed!”
The temperature outside is inching downward, but we all know that kids’ energy has no season. They’re almost always alert and ready to go! However, cold weather can put a damper on the usual outdoor activities. If you’re looking for a fun, indoor craft that will inspire creativity (and might even sneak in a bit of education) then here’s a suggestion for you!
Baker’s clay is a craft that can be made at home with simple ingredients. The clay is easy for kids to mold and fun for making letters, numbers or shape creations. With parental help to cook it up, this can be a fun afternoon activity for the family. The baker’s clay recipe comes from page 3 of Recipes for Fun, a pamphlet of activities for ages birth to five we have available at the library.
What you need:
- Mixing spoon
- Cookie sheet
- 4 cups flour
- 1 cup salt
- 1 ½ cups water
- Art Supplies (optional)
- Non-toxic water-based sealer (optional)
Continue reading “Crafts for Kids: Baker’s Clay”
Plankton likes to say hello to all his fellow sea creatures, but what happens when Mussel doesn’t return the greeting? Plankton gets pushy!
Jonathan Fenske’s book, “Plankton Is Pushy,” is a 2018 Missouri Building Block nominee that is entertaining to read aloud and requires a bit of acting. In order to get Mussel to talk, Plankton tries everything from lecturing him to begging. The surprise ending will leave you and your audience giggling. Although this book is written in conversational style, many of the pages have no words at all. Readers must rely on body language and facial expression alone to understand the character dynamics. This is a great social skill for younger kids to learn!
After you’ve finished reading “Plankton Is Pushy,” you and your little one can create an ocean themed sensory bottle. These are great for exploration and also a good way to calm down, especially when one might be feeling a little pushy! Continue reading “2018 Missouri Building Block Nominee: Plankton Is Pushy”
“I’m Bored!” Two words that every child is destined to say at some point or another. In the Missouri Building Block nominee “Barnacle is Bored” by Jonathan Fenske, Barnacle says these same fateful words as he waits for adventure to happen. Then a colorful fish swims by. Barnacle bets the fish doesn’t have a boring life. With a surprising ending, it turns out exciting isn’t always better! This picture book is a playful answer to any child’s declaration of boredom.
Extend the fun at home of the with the simple science experiment below.
Salt water sink or float
Use this experiment to show how salt water makes it easier for objects to float. Fill two small see-through tubs halfway with water and add ½ cup of salt to one of the tubs. Stir until the salt dissolves. Gather everyday objects that you don’t mind getting wet. Spend a little time predicting whether each object will sink or float before you toss them in. What happens? Some of your items that sink in the plain water will float in the salt water because adding the salt to the water made it more dense.
Once you have read at least five Missouri Building Block Picture Book Award nominees, help your child vote for their favorite. Voting is open to children in kindergarten and younger and goes through December. The winner will be announced in February.
Friends are the best! They not only help us build up our self confidence and fine-tune our social skills, but they also provide us with an increased sense of belonging and purpose. A really good friend can help us discover our true selves and can also provide support when we cope with tough issues.
In the 2018 Missouri Building Block Nominee “I Got a New Friend,” author Karl Newsom covers the basics of learning to be a friend, wrapped up in sweet and simple narrative any child will love. Here’s a sample from the first few pages: “I got a new friend. She’s kind of shy. At first, she was scared. But she got used to me.” At the very back of the book, there are also some helpful tips on how to care for your new friend.
Overall, this delightful book has a delightful twist! Who is really telling the story?
When you finish reading, here are a couple of friendship activities for you and your child to enjoy!
Have some fun with this friendship fingerplay! Continue reading “2018 Missouri Building Block Nominee: I Got a New Friend”
“I’m so glad we live in a world where there are Octobers.”- L.M. Montgomery
I have always been a fan of “Anne of Green Gables” by L.M. Montgomery. My parents read me the first two books when I was in the second grade, and I was further hooked when I watched the “Anne of Green Gables” movie starring Megan Follows. Ever since then, I have devoured anything to do with my beloved Anne—including throwing myself an Anne of Green Gables themed party for my 31st birthday! Visiting Prince Edward Island is still high on my to do list, and I’m hoping to make the trek sometime in the not so distant future. My newest Anne find is the “Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel” by Kansas City native Mariah Marden. This a great read for both die-hards like myself and for folks who may be daunted by the prospect of reading all 440 pages of the original novel. The text touched on all of my favorite scenes—Anne discovering the White Way of Delight, Matthew fretting over Anne’s puff sleeves—and the playful illustrations by Brenna Thummler fully capture the quiet beauty of Avonlea that Montgomery so lovingly describes. For a perfect fall afternoon, grab a fuzzy blanket and a cup of cider and curl up with this book!
“Pug is happy here at home.” Me too, Pug! This book made me delightfully happy. As a pug owner myself, I am of course biased, but I think this book by Sue Gallion with art by Joyce Wan is an absolute gem. Pug’s story begins with his enjoyment of routine and solitude, then everything changes when Pig arrives. Pug must adapt to this newcomer in his life, which he eventually does with grace and generosity. The simple words and clean, friendly illustrations make this an excellent choice for beginning readers, and little ones who aren’t quite there yet can try telling the story back to you after they’ve heard it once or twice. The theme of accepting changes and making new friends is one that will resonate especially with preschoolers and those facing new experiences.
Continue reading “2018 Missouri Building Block Nominee: Pug Meets Pig”
Once a week, starting today, we will be writing about all ten Missouri Building Block Picture Book Award nominees for 2018. These award nominees encourage reading aloud to children and are selected annually by a group of children’s librarians from Missouri. The books nominated for this award make for exciting and engaging story times for any group of kids. For the first nominee, we’ll start with Julia Donaldson’s, “The Giant Jumperee.”
We’ve all been scared of things that we can’t see, whether it be a situation or a mysterious monster. In this story, Rabbit comes home to find his burrow occupied by a Giant Jumperee who is “scary as can be!” Cat, Bear, and Elephant try to help Rabbit, but the Giant Jumperee is just too frightening. Will Mama Frog be able to face the unknown and help Rabbit take back his burrow? This book looks at our fear of the unknown in a lighthearted way and reminds us that things aren’t always what they seem.
After you’ve read the book, Penguin Books has provided printable activity sheets that you and your child can enjoy together. Practice observation skills by searching for the differences between two pictures, and then get a chance to draw your own Giant Jumperee!
Once you have read at least five Missouri Building Block Picture Book Award nominees, help your child vote for their favorite.