Reading Together

Posts Tagged ‘read alouds

I am beginning a new series of blog posts.  One of the things I enjoy doing the most is reading to my children and doing arts and crafts projects with my daughter.  With Monday being my day off I usually try to do some small art project with my daughter.  I will share those here as well as one of the books we read together on Mommy Mondays.

This Monday’s Art Project:

My daughter loves to paint and I recently bought her watercolors.  She has been painting outside all summer but with fall just around the corner I wanted to make sure she had something else to use inside to keep her painting going. 

When I took out the watercolors she was thrilled.  She went through each color and painted with each one, naming them as she went along.  Then it was mommy’s turn to paint.  I painted some flowers and asked her which colors I should paint with. 

Then I gave the brush back to her and she started painting her fingernails blue!

Then it was Mommy’s turn again.  She asked me to paint a bunny and an octopus.  I wished I could share pictures with you of my masterpieces! After this we made her hand prints which she loves to do! I also painted her name.  She named each letter of her name as we went along!

 Color and letter recognition were the lessons of this simple art project.  I’m sure she’ll be asking to paint again soon!

Book we Read Together Today:

Yummy: Eight Favorite Fairy Tales by Lucy Cousins

yummy

We are loving the stories in this book. Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel, Goldilocks and the Three Bears and The Three Little Pigs are our favorites! Lucy Cousings illustrations are wonderfully eye catching.  This would make a great gift this holiday season.  Be wary however, the author does not change much from the orginals.  Grandmother is eaten by the wolf and the pigs are all gobbled up as well.  Still, I wonderful read aloud.

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It has been awhile since my last post and I have a very good reason! The best reason actually.  My new baby boy was born on May 3rd.  He is wonderful but life has been very busy since then.  He is a month old and I have just been able to get back to writing recently.  In his short life he has, of course, been introduced to books.  He has sat in my lap on more than one occasion when I have read to his big sister.  He doesn’t look at the book though but stares at me while I am reading like I am the only thing in the world.  Motherhood is beautiful! I have read to him exclusively, although moments without his big sister around are few and far between and often when I am in need of sleep.  I enjoy reading my favorites to him: Goodnight Moon and Guess How Much I Love You. 

blackandwhiteI have also introduced him to the Tana Hoban books.   These are wonderful board books with black and white contrasting pictures.  Babies are better able to see these high contrasting black and white illustrations.  I use them during his “tummy time” to get him looking up.  There is only one object on a page and I tell him what they are and talk about them.  Talking to your baby is so important to increase language skills.  I also get big sis involved.  She will tell him what the pictures are as well and turn the pages.  It is never to early to read to your baby!

Books by Tana Hoban include the following titles: Black & White, White on Black, Black on White, and Who are They?

Beginning with Books is an early literacy outreach organization in Pittsburgh, PA.  Every year they come up with the “Best Books for Babies”.  This year’s list has just been announced:

http://www.beginningwithbooks.org/best-books-babies-11

I haven’t seen them all yet but I imagine I will soon.  They usually put out a great list.  Here are two I would definitely recommend for babies and toddlers that are on the list this year.

buckle1,2 Buckle My Shoe by Anna Grossnickle Hines.  Great illustrations and a wonderful book to learn to count with.  My daughter and I spent quite a bit of time talking about the colors and counting with this book.

fingers1Ten Little Fingers, Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox.  Such adorable babies and a smooth flowing text perfect for reading aloud.

 

I also love to see the inclusion of a book about sign language for babies on the list (Baby Signs: A Baby-sized Guide to Speaking with Sign Language  pictures by Joy Allen) .  I am passionate about using sign language with babies and taught my daughter sign language.  I have another blog which I have not updated in forever but will once I begin to teach my son (on his way any day now) how to sign.  You can find it at http://signingmommy.blogspot.com.

Karen Katz is a prolific author/illustrator of children’ books.  Her books for babies are among my favorite and my daughter’s favorites.  Her folk-art  illustrations of babies are nothing short of cute and adorable.  She has created a series of holiday books for babies and toddlers that feature flaps which are always a hit with little ones.  Flaps in a book are great for babies and toddler because they get your child interacting with a book.  Some of the titles in the series are:

Where is Baby’s Valentine?

Where are Baby’s Easter Eggs?

Where is Baby’s Pumpkin?

Where is Baby’s Dreidel?

Where is Baby’s Birthday Cake?

This year she has already published several new titles.  1The first is Shake It Up, Baby!  featuring again Katz’s charming baby illustrations and a fun, interactive text.  Making it a sure hit with babies and toddlers is the spine filled with tiny beads so when the book is shaken it sounds like a rattle.  The babies in the book are shaking their rattles and clapping their hands. 

Next is a sequel to Princess Baby, which introduced the sweet baby who was called everything else besides what she wanted to be called, “Princess Baby.”  In Princess Baby, Night-Night, Princess Baby is getting ready for 2bed.  As her parents are asking her if she is putting her pajamas on or brushing her teeth, she is preparing her stuffed animals for bed instead of herself.  She ends up on her bedroom floor curled up with all her animals.  This is relatable for all toddlers who love to play pretend with their animal friends.  I hope Princess Baby returns for more.

A Child’s Good Morning Book  is a poem written by Margaret Wise Brown 3which Katz illustrated.  The babies in this book, as in all Katz’s books, are sure to catch the attention of babies and toddlers and make them favorites.  Babies and toddlers can relate to the books as well because the babies are all doing things they do themselves; whether it’s searching for a Valentine, shaking a rattle, putting their favorite toy to bed or as in A Child’s Good Morning Book, waking up and starting the day. 

 

I always enjoy reading books about rain this time of year.  Usually it is pretty rainy out and there are some nice books to read aloud.  Enjoy these stories with your children and extend with songs and storytelling. 

Books to Read Aloud:

Listen to the Rain by Bill Martin, Jr.

One of my favorite read alouds.  It has a great stanza that repeats throughout the text.  I also enjoy playing with my voice as I read aloud making it softer at the beginning and louder in the middle and soft again at the end when the rain stops.

Rain Dance by Kathi Appelt

A simple counting book good for toddlers and preschoolers.   

Mushroom in the Rain by Mirra Ginsburg

Great for preschoolers and kindergarteners.  Also has a strong science tie-in. 

Rainy Day! by Patricia Lakin

This one is fairly new and I’ve only read it aloud once so far.  I like to share it with kids because of the “library” message it promotes.

Puddles by Jonathan London

A nice read aloud with a fun story about jumping in puddles.

 

Songs:

The itsy bitsy spider went up the water spout

down came the rain and washed the spider out

out came the sun and dried up all the rain

and the itsy bitsy spide went up the spout again.

Repeat with big hairy spider and teeny weeny spider going up and down the spout.  The big hairy spider has a deep voice and the teeny weeny spider has a high squeaky voice!

 

If all the raindrops

were lemondrops and gumdrops

Oh what a rain it would be!

I’d stand outside with my mouth open wide

saying Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah

 

Storytelling:

Flannel story:

Five umbrellas stood by the back door

the red one went outside, and then there were four

Four umbrellas, pretty as can be

The blue one went out, and then there were three

Three umbrellas with nothing to do

The green one went out, and then there were two

Two umbrellas, hoping for some fun

The yellow one went out, and then there was one

Just one umbrella, alone in the hall…

The purple one went out, and that was all!

 

Cut and Tell Story:

Find the pattern in Paper Stories by Jean Stangl or fold a piece of paper in half and draw half an umbrella on one side.  When you cut out the half and unfold it should reveal an umbrella.  Say the rhyme:

Rain on the green grass

rain on the tree

rain on the house top

but not on me.

Repeat until you are done cutting asking the kids to join in as you say it.  Then ask why is there no rain on me? and reveal the umbrella.



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  • Amber: Thanks for sharing my blog with your readers! You summed up the reason for the name better than I've been able to :) Good luck in the giveaway!
  • Musing: I wasn't able to finish Twilight myself, but I'm always glad to hear of young people being turned on to reading. :)
  • juliannahelt: I forgot about Twelve Hats for Lena. It is a great book! Thanks for mentioning it.