picture books: read 'em!

I love picture books and nobody is ever "too old" for them. There, I said it, now we can move on. There are so many amazing picture books that appeal to all ages. I was inspired by sweet Danielle to write this post -- I have been wanting to share more recommendations from my day job as an elementary librarian. I am constantly browsing and buying kids' books, I might as well share the love. Each week I want to highlight a couple books, new and old, that I love. 

Aviary Wonders, Inc. Spring Catalog and Instruction Manual (Kate Samworth)

This is an experimental book that is both hilariously weird and depressing. It shed light on the rapid extinction of many species while at the same time making you laugh and gawk at the beautiful illustrations.

The Man Who Walked Between the Towers (Mordicai Gerstein)

This is a fun, medium length book with lots of fun foldouts and vertical/horizontally flipped pages. It tells the (now overplayed) story of Phillipe Petit walking between the Twin Towers. The kids cannot believe it's based on a true story, so I always show this the trailer for the documentary Man on Wire directly after reading it to them. They can't believe their eyes!

 

elementary library picks of 2015

Closing out another year. These were my favorites this year at work.

PICTURE BOOKS

Lenny and Lucy
Phillip and Erin Stead are at it again. I love their illustration's so much. The story here is unique and slightly creepy. I paired this as a read aloud with Wild by Emily Hughes and Where the Wild Things Are. Kids loved these three together.

The Day the Crayons Came Home
I don't think it's possible to write this post without including it. They are insanely popular for a reason. So clever and funny.

Float
One of the many beautiful wordless picture books out there year. I want them all for myself!

The Only Child
Another wordless--this time  with over 100 pages of brilliant, heartbreaking illustrations. It is a combination picture book/graphic novel. 

First time illustrator, quojing, is from China and this story addresses the overwhelming loneliness felt by the massive generation of single children now coming of age.

 

 

MIDDLE GRADE

Screenshot 2015-12-06 07.28.37.png

Roller Girl by Victoria Jamison
Endearing graphic novel about roller derby. Great for girls or boys. It's funny, has a little edge to it, but with good taste.

Serafina and the Black Cloak by Robert Beatty
Creepy story that takes place in the basement of the Biltmore Estate? Ca. 1920? Sign me up!

The Marvels by Brian Selznick
Over 600 pages which are gilded along the edges. Beautiful book! Over 2/3 of the pages are just pictures, similar to Selznick's other books. This is a very sophiscated tale of New York City, Shakespeare, and the theater in general. I was way impressed.

Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate
Boy, Katherine Applegate really knows how to make you feel ALL the FEELS. Her last novel won the Newbery, The One and Only Ivan. I read it aloud to third grade every spring, so when this came out a couple months ago, I snatched it up. We are about to finish this one with fourth grade. It is a bit of a downer, but so so good. Short chapters, it gets right to the point.

Q1 2015: music, books, and tv

Can you believe that we're a quarter of the way into 2015?

How is that POSSIBLE?

paper cut book sculptures by  Barbara Wildenboer .

paper cut book sculptures by Barbara Wildenboer.

January, February and March were cold, snowy, and good for consuming things. Here are my highlights.

TELEVISION

Better Call Saul 

Do I dare say it? That this show has hit the ground running and might be filling the Breaking Bad shaped hole in my heart?

The Jinx

Finished this show last night. Wow. That's all I have to say.

The Great British Bake Off

I've raved about this show before, but seriously, it's amazing. Here's a taste of it's greatness.


I wish I could say that I've watched The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and loved it, but I started the first episode and was definitely not in the mood. Will try again. 

I have to say that this season of GIRLS has been dreadful. Anyone else out there think so? Where is it going?! No plot and no real character development. When will I put myself out of my misery with that thing...I need an intervention.The only reason I watch it now is for the soundtrack, which I have to say is fabulous.

MUSIC

Here are some songs that I PLAYED OUT. Like on repeat all day, every day.

Just Kids // Mat Kearney

Love Me Like You Do // Ellie Goulding

What Kind of Man // Florence + the Machine
I'm a Ruin // Marina and the Diamonds

BOOKS

Leaving Before the Rains Come // Alexandra Fuller
The Neapolitan Novels by Elena Ferrante
The Imaginarary // A.F. Harrold

I've blabbered about the first two picks enough, but The Imaginary. OH MY GOODNESS. It's kids book, but not so much. Scary, scary, scary. Read it.


You can listen to my Winter 2015 playlist on Spotify here.

Looking forward to lots of fun stuff this spring...aka the MAD MEN final season.

Happy reading, watching, and listening.

this week in the elementary library

2014-09-22 08.41.01  

Since last week was basically none existent for me at work...I had a different sub every day! Which means this morning I found the library in the state pictured above. Whoa. Things get a little crazy around this time. In two weeks we've got fall break, everyone's burned out and coughing.

No better time than to start on our spooky Halloween read alouds. Kids love spooky stuff. I don't read anything truly scary, but things with a subtle level of creep. Started with Lemony Snicket's The Dark today.

9780316187480_p0_v2_s260x420

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YS9WEFJrFfY[/embed]

This book came out last year and it became an immediate favorite with all my library patrons. We love it's playful language and Jon Klassen's illustrations are always amazing. The kids always know them from other favorites like I Want My Hat Back and Extra Yarn. One of my favorite things about Klassen's illustrations is the color palette. Not the typical colors used in children's books...they are muted, earth tones most of the time, but it works.

dark1 Dark3 DSC_0381

 

If you want to read this alongside another book, I suggest I Need My Monster by Amanda Noll. That's what we're doing this week and the two pair very well together.

 

this week in the elementary library...

cover-lennon We'll still loving our picture book biographies in third grade. This week it's time to learn about...The Beatles. WAH!

I love this biography of John Lennon, John's Secret Dreams: The Life of John Lennon by Doreen Rappaport, illustrated by Bryan Collier. The illustrations are strewn with lyrics, which is always nice.

Picture-13

To enhance the experience, I've been showing Ed Sullivan clips along with other fun Beatles videos.

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sclfhlScwkk[/embed]

I love my job, but a little part of me dies every time a kid says gleefully that Big Time Rush (who? what?!) is better than The Beatles. HA! They were trying to get me and they did.

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55ssSDV9LWc[/embed]

this week in the elementary library

Morris I have posted about this before, but I can't help myself, I've got to share it again. This week in the library we broken in our new Smartboard by watching The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore. I show this to all grades every year. They all love it--it's just 15 minutes of perfect. Watch it here:

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VljJIQuPDSE[/embed]

 

 

life is better with...Oliver Jeffers

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=5KZu0X82l7k]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=hipx6HJs4XQ

Amazing right?

I'm reading Oliver Jeffers books all week to kids at school and we are all loving it. He's pretty much perfect. Not only does he do many, many wonderful picture books, but has some truly enchanting iPad versions of his books! Read by the one and only Helena Bonham Carter!?!? The kids go crazy for this. Dying. Check it out:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Wc3fghSJvBM]