Eva’s Treetop Festival

January 20, 2015 by

Eva's treetop festivalEva’s Treetop Festival

By: Rebecca Elliott

 

Eva Wingdale, an owl with lots of personality, is known for her big ideas. She offers to organize the first Treetop Owlementary Bloomtastic Festival with a bake-off, talent, fashion, and art shows. With the big event only seven days away, Eva is worried that she can’t get everything done in time. Her teacher, Mrs. Featherbottom, recommends that Eva ask her classmates for help. Eva decides that is the only way the festival will get planned in time.  She learns the power of delegation and her classmates willingly chip in to help her pull off a great festival.

 

This early chapter book is a nice step between early readers and chapter books. It is written in a diary format with speech bubbles and colorful illustrations. This book and other accessible early chapter books are published by the new Branches imprint of Scholastic Books. Both children and parents will love them. Other titles published by the Branches imprint include Boris on the Move, Kiki: My Stylish Life, and Monkey Me and the Pet Show.

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Early Literacy Tip of the Week

January 19, 2015 by

Clapping along to rhythms helps children hear the syllables in words and helps them improve motor skills.

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Kid Picks

January 18, 2015 by

jack and jill 1winx 2 big nate 3neptune project 4stink 6jedi academy 7

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App Time Recommends

January 17, 2015 by

Yesterday at App Time we explored the apps Pat the Bunny by Random House LCC and Felt Board by Software Smoothie.

Pat the Bunny ($4.99) is based on the book by Dorothy Kunhardt. It has the important feature of highlighted narration. Highlighted narration is similar to running your finger along text in a printed book. This feature helps kids gain print awareness. I really like that this app is true to the original printed book and that interaction is directly related to the text.

Felt Board ($2.99) is an open-ended, versatile app. This app looks exactly like a traditional felt board. Kids can create pictures with a variety of backgrounds, people, and animals. Encourage your child to talk about what is happening in the scenes they create. This interaction helps boost narrative skills. You can also use your imagination to create games to increase number, letter, and shape recognition. I love that the possibilities are endless with this app. If you need ideas, re-create a favorite flannel you’ve seen at storytime or ask us for ideas at the Children’s Info desk at your local Plano Public Library.

Interested in coming to App Time? It is every Friday, 11:00-11:45am, at Haggard Library (2501 Coit Road). Come join us as we explore how to best use apps as a tool for early literacy!

This program is funded by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission and the Institute for Museum and Library Services.

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Boom Boom

January 16, 2015 by

Boom Boom CoverBoom Boom

By Sarvinder Naberhaus

Illustrated by Margaret Chodos-Irvine

 BOOM BOOM! FLASH! FLASH!  A classroom of multicultural preschool children listen and watch in awe during a spring thunderstorm. One little boy is frightened by the loud noise and holds his hands over his ears but is reassured by a little girl who takes his hand and leads him outside with the rest of the class to explore and splash in puddles after the storm.  We follow the class and the 2 new friends throughout the seasons as they find insects among the summer blossoms, crunch apples and jump in leaves in the fall, and finally catch snowflakes in the winter. Naberhaus employs one or two words in a rhyming pattern as the seasons progress and the children use their senses to interact with their environment.

Chodos-Irvine uses a variety of nontraditional materials and various printmaking techniques to lead viewers through the changing landscapes and the children’s accompanying activities. This is a unique and engaging exploration of the seasons for preschoolers as well as for early readers.

Reviewed by Connie (Parr Library)

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I’m a Dirty Dinosaur

January 15, 2015 by

I’m a Dirty Dinosaur by Janeen Brian & Ann James

This is an eye-catching book!  The title letters are in bright primary colored capitals on a white background, with the exception of the brown, finger-written word, “dirty.”

The text is a storyteller’s dream, with short refrains that rhyme, and repetitive choruses that beg for the listener to act them out.  This may become your child’s pre-bathtime favorite.  And of course, dinosaur lovers will be thrilled with a new book to read.

First published in Australia, I’m very glad that American readers will have a chance to enjoy I’m a Dirty Dinosaur.

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The Night I Followed The Dog

January 14, 2015 by

night i followed the dogThe Night I Followed the Dog

By Nina Laden

A little boy believes his dog is boring, average, absolutely ordinary. Until, one morning he sees his dog get out of a limousine. Now, that is definitely not normal! Intrigued, the boy decides to follow his dog that night. Check out this interesting story to find out what the boy discovers about his seemingly uninteresting dog.

This book is a childhood favorite of mine. I remembering being fascinated by Nina Laden’s typography (first page below) and wondering if my own dog had a cool, secret double life. This picture book is great for anyone who loves dogs, mysteries, and humor.

inside typography

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Strongheart

January 13, 2015 by

indexStrongheart
By Emily Arnold McCully

Strongheart is the true story of the world’s first movie star dog. He was a new breed of dog born in Germany during the World Wars, the German Shepard, used to help the police in apprehending criminals. When the war ended, Etzel von Oeringen was sent to America to be sold. Well trained and very determined, Etzel caught the eye of a movie director named Larry Trimble. The problem was, Etzel didn’t know how to be a dog! Before Larry could film Etzel for the movies, he had to teach his dog how to play.

When Etzel finally got in front of the cameras, he was incredible! He could look sad and happy and worried, something no other movie dog had done before. In all his films, Etzel was the hero, so Larry decided to start calling him Strongheart. This is a great book for any child who has an interest in dogs. They’ll learn some fun facts about the early years of the movie, and how a German Shepard became the very first movie star dog.

Recommended for ages 5-9.

Nicki P.

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Early Literacy Tip of the Week

January 12, 2015 by

Children need lots of chances to practice. Be patient. You may need to answer the same questions, read the same books, and play the same games over and over again. Children learn through repetition.

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Kid Picks

January 11, 2015 by

fancy nancy 1warthog 2dixie 3geronimo stilton 4fairy 5unfortunate events 6

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