Thursday, February 27, 2014

February 2014 Favourite Read-Aloud Roundup

These days, I often do my library book-browsing online, place holds on what looks interesting, and pick the books up at my local library in the middle of my busy errand day. It is very convenient, and it allows me to choose books from across the entire provincial library system.

I found Keep Looking! almost by chance. I was looking for some easy readers by Millicent Selsam that I had seen mentioned in the forums at Ambleside Online. My library system did not have them, but I placed a hold on a couple of books by the same author, just to see what they were like.
This is a sweet, gentle book. It begins with an empty house and yard, but when you keep looking, you find all kinds of little animals. If your little ones like nature study in the winter, they will connect to this book. The watercolour illustrations by Normand Chartier are incredibly beautiful. I found that JJ (3) and MM (1) especially loved this.

I stumbled across Emily while I was browsing through books illustrated by Barbara Cooney. It is a sweet story of a child meeting the reclusive poet Emily Dickinson. My little boys love her poem "A Bird came down the Walk". I read this book at our Poetry Teatime this week, and they enjoyed it very much. This is the first time I've introduced them to the person behind one of the poems they enjoy so much. I hope there are more books like this out there, because this was a success! I could see that SA (5) was especially taken with the thought that someone writes the poetry that we read.

The Story of Little Babaji is a classic story that somehow I had never come across before finding it on the Ambleside Online Year 0 Booklist. 3-year-old JJ especially enjoyed it, and asked me to read it many times. He is also requesting The Little Red Hen constantly these days.

If you are looking for a good collection of nursery rhymes, Lavender's Blue is an excellent choice. The only thing I'm realizing is that while I love the well-drawn illustrations by Harold Jones, they do not appeal as much to my children. They would just as soon choose the collection illustrated by Rosemary Wells (which I personally find somewhat grotesque...sshhh, don't tell anyone!). Their taste clearly runs to simple and colourful rather than delicate and detailed. Still, I'm glad I chose this collection to buy, since it seems to have all the nursery rhymes I have ever heard and then some. We have been using it regularly at our Poetry Teatimes.

I will be linking up with Read-Aloud Thursday at Hope is the Word, and also Book Sharing Monday (next Monday) at Life on a Canadian Island.