Archive for the ‘rockin’ kids books’ Category

The Dot | Children’s Book Review | Maggie McDonald Photography Dallas

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010

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I am a MAJOR lover of books, especially of the kid variety.  I’ve always loved to read for myself, but when I became a teacher, I had this crazy urge to purchase every book in the universe and have a library of children’s books that was out of this world.  Lucky for me, my husband and his dad slaved in the garage several weekends building the perfect shelves for my second grade classroom.  I labeled and categorized everything, visited garage sales & Scholastic book fairs, I was a maniac!!!  I still have so, so many books, but lately, the kiddos and I have really been getting into the swing of reading and checking out books from the library.  We’ve been fortunate to find some amazing reads just by chance.  SO, this is where I’ll share some of those!

A long, long, long time ago when I first started this blog, I decided I’d love to have a section for recommended children’s books. Well, I got super busy and it never really came to fruition (except for this entry). It’s ALWAYS been at the back of my mind though! So, here we go. I’m going to try my best at reviewing a book for children once a week … PLUS, my pal Jess said she’d really love it. So, Jess, here’s the first one…{mwah!}

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The Dot by Peter Reynolds (it holds an Irma S and James H Black Honor for Excellence in Children’s Literature award!)

The first time we read this book I got a little choked up.  It’s a beautiful story about a little girl who develops confidence through the gentle persuasion of a teacher and starts to believe in herself.

Vashti doesn’t think she’s an artist.  In fact, at the end of art class, she’s left at her table with a blank piece of paper.   Through humor and patience, her teacher encourages her to just make a mark on her paper and it truly changes her life.  Her teacher sees that “dot” as the work of an artist and the next day, her dot is framed behind the teacher’s desk.  This leads the young girl to see art in a new way.  Her eyes are opened.  Her confidence bursts.   Soon, she has a series of dot paintings at the school art show in all different sizes and colors.  Truly heartwarming.

The real beauty of the story, however, is when a young boy, with confidence that mirrors Vashti’s at the beginning of the story, approaches her and comments on her abilities.  This young child doesn’t believe in himself and Vashti suddenly feels the urge to pay it back — to let him know that it’s entirely possible to achieve greatness – you just have to look inside.

I hope you read it.  As a lover of the arts, this book really spoke to me.  I read this to Peach’s kindergarten classroom last week and EVERY STUDENT was wide-eyed and incredibly curious.  I could see their 5-year-old brains really processing the story.  They became alive as they saw Vashti blossom and believe in herself.  You’ll absolutely enjoy this story and the illustrations are super cute, too.

Hope you have a super day and thanks for stopping by!!!

~mm

Rockin’ Book Review: Tails by Matthew Van Fleet

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

 img_0934cballbwweb.jpg

img_0942l-copy.jpg

Here’s the thing.

I love children’s books.  Always have — as a kid, teacher, mom, I could/can never get enough.  Books and I have this special relationship :)  …I just can’t stop buying them.  SO, I thought…why not review a cool kid book every week or so for those of you that might be interested. 

I’ll say a little about the book and why we like it — have pics of my kiddos reading it.  Maybe branch out to pics of other kiddos reading a book they recommend.  That might be fun! 

So, here’s the first review.

img_0958-bookpic.jpg [click pic if you'd like it bigger]

Book: Tails

Author:  Matthew Van Fleet

Got this book:  from a friend for J’s birth (I was totally shocked I’d never seen it before — it’s great!!!)

Rating:  10 Golden Grahams (that’s good!!!  10 is the best.  :) )

About:  This board-like book is great fun for the little ones.   The text rhymes and it talks of tails of various animals.  It certainly appeals to all senses – kids touch furry tails, smell a skunk tail, drag their finger along a bumpy tail, hear the cute text, and move little strips (like a pop-up book, but durable) to see various tails move.  There’s also a fancy sparkly peek-a-boo page for the peacock, which is an absolute hit.   It’s a very interactive, colorful book and would be a great gift for someone’s child or a total hit for your own library. 

*It’s not as thick as a board book, but pages are extremely well made.  Ours has lasted for quite a while and shows no signs of trauma from little hands pulling and prodding all the time.  :)

Age: Baby-Preschool

Price: $13.95  ($10-something @ amazon right now)

=====> IF any of you have a book we should take a look at, let us know!  We’re always looking for the latest and greatest books.  I hope we can find some new, awesome books out of this, too! 

About the pics…no flash, taken last-minute before bed because the kids were being so cute (couldn’t resist!) Because of the no flash and low light, I had to use an ultra-high ISO — makes pics grainy if it’s too high, but I took care of that with some software I recently purchased.  I did have the kids reading right next to a light, which helped a bit. 

Thanks for reading and here are a couple more pics — just couldn’t narrow them down today!   ~m

img_0930yyselclrlcbal-copy.jpgimg_0931yycbalselclrlweb-copy.jpg

Rockin’ Book Review: Tails by Matthew Van Fleet

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

 img_0934cballbwweb.jpg

img_0942l-copy.jpg

Here’s the thing.

I love children’s books.  Always have — as a kid, teacher, mom, I could/can never get enough.  Books and I have this special relationship :)  …I just can’t stop buying them.  SO, I thought…why not review a cool kid book every week or so for those of you that might be interested. 

I’ll say a little about the book and why we like it — have pics of my kiddos reading it.  Maybe branch out to pics of other kiddos reading a book they recommend.  That might be fun! 

So, here’s the first review.

img_0958-bookpic.jpg [click pic if you'd like it bigger]

Book: Tails

Author:  Matthew Van Fleet

Got this book:  from a friend for J’s birth (I was totally shocked I’d never seen it before — it’s great!!!)

Rating:  10 Golden Grahams (that’s good!!!  10 is the best.  :) )

About:  This board-like book is great fun for the little ones.   The text rhymes and it talks of tails of various animals.  It certainly appeals to all senses – kids touch furry tails, smell a skunk tail, drag their finger along a bumpy tail, hear the cute text, and move little strips (like a pop-up book, but durable) to see various tails move.  There’s also a fancy sparkly peek-a-boo page for the peacock, which is an absolute hit.   It’s a very interactive, colorful book and would be a great gift for someone’s child or a total hit for your own library. 

*It’s not as thick as a board book, but pages are extremely well made.  Ours has lasted for quite a while and shows no signs of trauma from little hands pulling and prodding all the time.  :)

Age: Baby-Preschool

Price: $13.95  ($10-something @ amazon right now)

=====> IF any of you have a book we should take a look at, let us know!  We’re always looking for the latest and greatest books.  I hope we can find some new, awesome books out of this, too! 

About the pics…no flash, taken last-minute before bed because the kids were being so cute (couldn’t resist!) Because of the no flash and low light, I had to use an ultra-high ISO — makes pics grainy if it’s too high, but I took care of that with some software I recently purchased.  I did have the kids reading right next to a light, which helped a bit. 

Thanks for reading and here are a couple more pics — just couldn’t narrow them down today!   ~m

img_0930yyselclrlcbal-copy.jpgimg_0931yycbalselclrlweb-copy.jpg

Rockin’ Book Review: Tails by Matthew Van Fleet

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

 img_0934cballbwweb.jpg

img_0942l-copy.jpg

Here’s the thing.

I love children’s books.  Always have — as a kid, teacher, mom, I could/can never get enough.  Books and I have this special relationship :)  …I just can’t stop buying them.  SO, I thought…why not review a cool kid book every week or so for those of you that might be interested. 

I’ll say a little about the book and why we like it — have pics of my kiddos reading it.  Maybe branch out to pics of other kiddos reading a book they recommend.  That might be fun! 

So, here’s the first review.

img_0958-bookpic.jpg [click pic if you'd like it bigger]

Book: Tails

Author:  Matthew Van Fleet

Got this book:  from a friend for J’s birth (I was totally shocked I’d never seen it before — it’s great!!!)

Rating:  10 Golden Grahams (that’s good!!!  10 is the best.  :) )

About:  This board-like book is great fun for the little ones.   The text rhymes and it talks of tails of various animals.  It certainly appeals to all senses – kids touch furry tails, smell a skunk tail, drag their finger along a bumpy tail, hear the cute text, and move little strips (like a pop-up book, but durable) to see various tails move.  There’s also a fancy sparkly peek-a-boo page for the peacock, which is an absolute hit.   It’s a very interactive, colorful book and would be a great gift for someone’s child or a total hit for your own library. 

*It’s not as thick as a board book, but pages are extremely well made.  Ours has lasted for quite a while and shows no signs of trauma from little hands pulling and prodding all the time.  :)

Age: Baby-Preschool

Price: $13.95  ($10-something @ amazon right now)

=====> IF any of you have a book we should take a look at, let us know!  We’re always looking for the latest and greatest books.  I hope we can find some new, awesome books out of this, too! 

About the pics…no flash, taken last-minute before bed because the kids were being so cute (couldn’t resist!) Because of the no flash and low light, I had to use an ultra-high ISO — makes pics grainy if it’s too high, but I took care of that with some software I recently purchased.  I did have the kids reading right next to a light, which helped a bit. 

Thanks for reading and here are a couple more pics — just couldn’t narrow them down today!   ~m

img_0930yyselclrlcbal-copy.jpgimg_0931yycbalselclrlweb-copy.jpg