Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Children's Book Review Round-Up


Invites the reader to join a bear and other woodland animals on a cold, moonlit walk to investigate strange noises and observe the arrival of spring.

My Review:

My boys and I loved this book!  What a beautifully illustrated book about the end of Winter and the wondrous beginnings of Spring!! You follow along as the bear and child step through Winter in all its glory collecting other animals along the way.  They listen to the sounds and take in the sights of Winter and finally take in the magical sights of Spring.  I love this book and I cannot wait to use it in my classroom.  It has so much potential for wonderful and creative art projects!!! 4 stars

In this simple, brightly illustrated tale, some of the littlest words have the biggest meanings! 

"Ah!" A rabbit, delighting in the beautiful day, sets out for a walk. But "ah" takes on an entirely different connotation as the rabbit finds himself in a dark tunnel full of mysterious inhabitants. Back in the sunshine, he discovers a little spider has hitched a ride on his shoulder, which he acknowledges with a squeamish "Ahh . . . AHHHH!"

My Review: 
A funny story about a silly spider surprising a rabbit throughout the day.  Great pictures and a funny story that keeps little ones interested. 4.0 stars

Anna and her toy dog, Toto, are all set for the beach. Today Anna will give Toto a swimming lesson, and she has no time for the boy in the silly cowboy hat who watches them from the shore.
Toto is an excellent swimmer—but before long, he's bobbing out of reach. "TOTO!" Anna cries. None of the adults know what to do, but the boy in the silly cowboy hat has an idea. In no time at all, he has rescued Toto with his trusty lasso. Maybe that hat of his isn't so silly after all!

In this heartwarming story about mistaken first impressions, Hildegard Müller strikes the perfect endnote as the two new friends mosey off with Toto into a richly-hued sunset.
My Review:
Sometimes your first impression is wrong.  This book teaches young readers to take time to get to know somebody before you judge them.  It is never a good idea to judge a person on looks alone.  That reflection of what kind of person they are may not be accurate.  3 stars


Ann is playing school with her friend Bess. "Oh, no. Here comes Min!" Ann says. "This is a school zone, Min. School is hard. You are not ready. Here is the line. You may not step over it." Min is clever and resourceful. She gets a board, a tube, a rope, and a rock and builds and launches a rocket that catapults her right into the middle of her big sisters playdate without stepping over the line! Beginning readers will cheer underdog Mins triumphant landing in this easy-to-read book that celebrates ingenuity and perseverance.

My Review:
An adorable story about determination.  Little Min wanted to play school with her friends and instead of taking no as an answer she took to her imagination  and creativity to be included in the games her friends were playing!!! 4.0 stars


Abe Lincoln is known for his many memorable adages. As the sixteenth president he needed all the wisdom he could muster to guide the country through the Civil War, preserve the union, and end slavery. This nontraditional tribute to the president who brought the homespun humor of his humble beginnings to the White House uses the alphabet to organize a wealth of information about his life and accomplishments. Filled with witty cartoons by John OBrien, this colorful book offers an unusual and insightful perspective on Old Abe.

My Review: 
My son has admired Abe Lincoln for as long as I can remember.  I am not sure where this admiration came from, but it has been going strong for several years.  So when we got his book to review...he went nuts!  He has been plugging away at it and learning so much along the way.  He comes over to me every few minutes to tell me what he has read.   This book has such amazing facts, quotes, pictures and a story all in one.   It is the must have for any child who loves Abe Lincoln or is learning about Abe Lincoln in school.   I loved this book because it had so much to keep his interests and to really highlight what an amazing person Abe Lincoln was.  I highly recommend this book and rate it 5 stars.


With simple text and lush watercolor illustrations, Caldecott Honor winner Ted Lewin invites readers to explore animal camouflage in the rain forest.

My Review: 
A great book that takes the reader into the rain forest to see all the creatures hidden there.  A great I LIKE TO READ book for early readers.  I will use this one in my class too!  4.0 stars


Eight trucks hit the highway in a colorful and mesmerizing maze book that helps kids understand how food gets to their tables. In eleven intricately drawn mazes, eight vehicles, each carrying a different product, are on their way to the city. Fish, apples, dairy products, corn, vegetables, flowers, eggs, and baked goods all travel through colorful and minutely detailed landscape mazes to reach the city farmers market. Information on all of the products and their journeys is included along with solutions to all of the mazes. For additional fun kids are challenged to look for objects hidden on each spread.

My Review: 
I wish I had this book when we traveled across the US last summer.  It is a perfect book for road trips, raining days, bedtime and any time, really.  My boys and I loved racing to see who could find the pictures first.  It requires focus and patience, which are good skills to have.  I think what is great about this book is that the pictures are so colorful and interesting to look at, so it keeps the kid's attention (and Mom/Dad's too).  I really enjoyed this book and rate it 4.5 stars.


Magic School Bus illustrator Bruce Degen tells the story of a little boy who discovers there's more to his bed than meets the eye.

My Review:
A cute book about all the places your imagination can take you at bedtime...ride the magical bed as it becomes a car, a plane and a boat...until it lands back in your room and you snuggle into bed and go to  sleep! 3 stars


While the blowing wind makes "porch doors sway" and "sea waves spray," it is responsible for much, much more. These same breezes send electron power traveling down windmills and circuits to ignite electricity. Electrons travel through power lines, and electricity charges the national grid so that lights may be turned on, cold homes may be warmed, and warm homes may be cooled. The gusts can help make "Factories hum / Harbors light up / Smart cars run." In a poetic text and sweeping landscape paintings, this picture book explores the many facets of the wind.

My Review:
I used this book in my classes for kids ages 2-4 and they really enjoyed it.  The colorful and vibrant illustrations keep the kids interest.  The poetic way the book is written makes it fun to listen to.   I love that there are interesting and easy books that teach children some interesting facts out in the world.  I love reading books the kids have not heard before.  Such fun!  4 stars


Al loves owls. He reads books about owls, watches movies starring owls, and draws pictures of owlshe even sleeps with a stuffed owl. Al wishes he could be just like an owl instead of a kid! His dream comes true at summer camp, where he gets lost on a hike and spends the night in the forest with a bunch of owls. But when Al gets hungry, he learns that owl life isnt all its cracked up to be. Maybe being a kid isnt so bad after all. 

My Review:
A boy is in love with all things owls (as am I!!!).  He only thinks about owls...day and night..owls, owls, owls. Then he heads off to camp and meets the owls...will one meal with the owls make him realize being human is not so bad???  This is a cute story about how some times things are not as wonderful as you first thought. 4.0 stars.  I love the pictures in this book!!!


Some birds are huge and some are tiny. Some birds are fantastically colorful and some are plain. What do all birds share? Early nonfiction expert Lizzy Rockwell explains that birds have beaks, wings, and feathers, and are hatched from eggs. Other animals might have some of these features in common, but only a bird has them all. Only a bird is a bird! A clear text and graceful illustrations cover dozens of different birds and their shared characteristics, as well as the unique qualities of unusual birds, such as penguins and peacocks.

My Review:
I love birds and I love this book.  It is a informational and colorful book about all things birds.  It contains drawings of all kinds of birds.  This book will become my staple book for my bird lessons.  Kids of all ages and their parents will really enjoy this book.  5 stars


Knight and Horse are drifting off to sleep when Knight has a magical dream. In his vision, he sees the most scrumptious soft golden cookies he has ever laid his eyes on. The delicious treats call to him: Go and find the golden cookies. When Knight wakes up, he gets Horse ready for their journey, and they go trotting along in search of the golden goods. But the cookies are nowhere to be found! Knight and Horse finally return home to the castle, where a surprise in the kitchen rewards their valiant quest. This kid-friendly knights tale with a simple text and delightful illustrations is a mouthwatering treat for emerging readers. 

My Review:  
An adventure in your dreams.  A cute I LIKE TO READ book that young early readers will surely enjoy.  I am also looking forward to using this in my classes.  There are some amazing applications that can be used...art projects...dreaming big...horses and knights.  Fun, fun, fun!!!  4.5 stars


Robug tries to obey when Jake instructs it to "Fix this mess!" but somehow manages to make things worse.

My Review:
Such a cute book about helpful Robug who tires to help, but makes things much more complicated! A great story about sharing responsibilities and team work.   Another book I cannot wait to get to use in the classroom!!  5 stars


After the rain a rainbow follows, begging the question, What is at the end? A young girl sets out to answer this and along the way invites Rabbit, Bird, Turtle, and Horse to join her. The group is anxiously awaiting the rainbows end, when suddenly, the arc is gone. While the group does not find the end of the rainbow, they realize that they have found something even better: wonderful new friends! 

My Review:
A fabulous story about inclusions and making friends.  Follow a little girl who tries to find the end of the rainbow and along the way makes some amazing new friends!  Another great book for classroom application.  I plan to use this book for my rain lesson!!!  5 stars


Farmer Fred forgot to feed the horse! Mouse nibbles holes in the horse's feed bag and all is well for the horse, but not for Mouse. Look out, Mouse! A cat, a snake, an owl, and a fox pursue him. But the horse neighs, the dog barks, chickens cluck, Farmer Fred comes out of his house, and Mouse is safe. Meanwhile, Mouse runs into the house. Look out, house!

My Review:

An easy to read book that takes place at the farm.  See what happens when the lazy farmer forgets to feed the horse.  3 stars


Jane Cabreras signature bold hues and lively animal characters are a delight in this version of the well-loved children's song, with new lyrics that encourage young readers to sing along.

My Review:  
Love, Love, Love this book...you need to take a look....I adored this new take on Row, Row, Row Your Boat!!! I cannot wait to use it in my ALL my classes.  There is one class where I have all boys and this book it a sure fire hit!  We will count all the animals in the book and act them out!  I loved the illustrations!  They are colorful and vibrant and sure to please.  The updated lyrics are adorable and fun!  I cannot wait share this book with my classes!!  5 stars!


Astrid the fly loves exploring. With her big eyes, two wings, and four legs, she can fly super-fast. She likes to zoom around looking for sweet treats and her favorite Danish salami. But Astrids family isnt keen on her risky behavior. They try to scare her with stories of flyswatters and vacuums, and warnings of an uncle who went missing. Astrid doesnt listen, until one day she encounters real danger: the refrigerator. Astrids irresistible thirst for adventure will have readers rooting for her from start to finish. 

My Review:
Get ready to go on an adventure with Astrid the Fly and see what this little guy does all day to keep busy!!!  You children will find it to be a delightful tale of exploration and discovery!!  4 stars


In Tim Hamiltons humorous and heartwarming debut picture book, a boy learns the value of telling the truth and makes a new friend in the process.

My Review:
I like this book for a few reasons:
1.  I love that boxes are still a kids favorite thing to play with and create hours of endless fun!
2.  It teaches kids to tell the truth and and to tell fibs.
3.  This books highlights that friends come in all ages!
4.0 stars


The whole family is in bed, and the house is now quiet. Or is it? Drip, drop. Creak, creak. Achoo! A curious bird, who happens to be a lamp, investigates. Jeffrey Ebbelers whimsical nocturnal fantasy explores the world of sound as an endearing bird makes himself useful putting the home he shares with his humans in order.

My Review:
An adventure story about he nighttime noises in a house.  These noises  peek the curiosity of a bird who happens to also be a lamp. He roams the house and shines his light on all the things making the noises.  This book may help kids who get scared by noises at night... to show them they are just the common things in the house making those noises.  4.0 stars  


"Ping and Pong are friends, even though they like to do different things"

My Review:
Everyone is different and that is good because sometimes friends compliment each other ...just like Ping and Pong.  4.0 stars


Illustrations and easy-to-read text relate a trip to the beach that features a man in a funny hat--or hat on a funny man, a sandy lunch and swimsuit, and a high-flying kite.

My Review:  
If you like SpongeBob then you will really enjoy this book.  It is about some quirky characters and their day at the beach.  3 stars


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