We didn’t do a FIAR book this week. Smarty’s kindergarten has a “take a book home” program, when they will be bringing a new book home every Monday, read it (with parents for those who cannot read) and write a book report. In the beginning of the year a book report form is simply a title, author and an illustration, but the format gets more advanced later in the year when more writing is expected. Everyone gets a different book each week, and I was thinking of doing a FIAR-like activities around whatever book she gets.
Our reading week got very exciting on Wednesday when a whiny and slightly sick daughter got a big box from Tiger Tales. We really appreciate their generosity and being part of their review team. Tiger Tales books always have fantastic illustrations with stories that are engaging and quirky at the same time. Smarty read all of the books in one big gulp, and then we continued to read her favorites together. Here they are:
Naughty Toes by Ann Bonwill is an interesting story about following your own feet, so to speak. Two sisters in the story are very different in what they like, how they dress and how they dance. I personally thought that the dance teacher was absolutely awful, but Smarty didn’t pick up much on how badly she treated a less graceful girl. Smarty mostly enjoyed the fact that “an ugly duckling” did find her own calling in the end of the book.
Limelight Larry by Leigh Hodgkinson was probably the quirkiest of the bunch in the story. I noticed that many newer picture books use a dialogue or even a monologue a lot more than classic picture books. The book did require me to use a lot more theatrics when I read her to Smarty, but this is what makes her fun. Of course, younger audience might also be very enchanted by a special shiny page inside – my daughter was kind of blah about it.
When I read The Dancing Clock by Steve Metzger, I immediately thought of my blog friend Erica who lives in New York City. This could be a good book for her Storied Cities blog even though the whole story focuses on one New York landmark. The book (which is written in verse) also has beautiful illustrations by John Abbott Nez. The only problem for us with the story was the character breaking the rules which always upsets my daughter.
My kindergartener deemed A is for Apple “a baby book” and didn’t want to read it, but I really wish I had this book and its companion 123 Count with Me when Smarty was about 2 or 3. I really liked an interactive component of the book – kids can trace the letters and numbers with their finger (hopefully learning the correct letter formation early) and open little tabs with words or numbers. These board books are really well done and I am sure they will be appreciated by Smarty's baby friends.