Thursday, November 19, 2015

Books, books

Kids books for two weeks!  If you don't like these posts, you are excused now.  But if you are interested in recommendations for your little and not so little ones, stay with me here!

 Ask your youngsters if they know what a baker's dozen is. More than likely they won't know it's 13.  When I was a kid and we bought our cookies individually or corn from the back of a pickup truck, the 13th was part of the deal. This is the story of the person who truly introduced the concept of  "a dozen means twelve, and then one more."

 This is the true story of how a baker fed George Washington's revolutionary war forces.  And even some of the British "enemy."  I absolutely love the illustrations, all drawn to look like gingerbread cookies.
 Mr. Squirrel finds a runaway wheel of cheese on his branch one morning and is convinced it's the moon and he will be accused of having stolen it. Thus begins his quest to return it to the sky.  The story is a charmer but the illustrations are fabulous.
 And this new one by the same author/illustrator is even cuter.  Squirrel is determined to stay awake long enough to see snow. Deer tells him it's white and soft and cold and he enlists the help of other animals who are up way past their hibernating bedtime to help him experience snow.  Again, the story is really sweet but the illustrations are a winner.
 Here in the U.S. we have the tradition of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade every year.  When I was little we watched on black and white televisions but we always watched this parade every Thanksgiving Day morning.  This is the partly true story of the parade.  I explained to the kids that you can take any historic event and write a story about it but if you change it you have to explain yourself and the changes in author's notes at the end.  In this case the idea of the parade is true, the reason for the parade is true and the consequence of that first parade is true.  But Milly and her family and the role they played is the vehicle author Shana Corey chose to tell this story.  Oh, and Mr. Macy had been dead for 50 years before the first parade in 1924, but that's him in the bottom left corner.
 After you hear the story from Milly you follow up with this one.  In the first couple of years of the parade wild animals from the Central Park Zoo, elephants, camels and bears marched with 1,000 Macy employees in the parade.  But it was when lions and tigers joined the parade and scared the children with their roars and close proximity, that an alternative was sought.  Enter Tony Sarg, marionette expert.  Tony loved to tinker and make things move.  It was his work that gave us the huge balloons we see in parades today.

 We wore this book out at school.  Had to buy a new copy.  And I bought one for myself, too.  It's that repetitive rhyme that follows the form of "I know an Old Lady that Swallowed a Fly."  The kids love it.

And I love this one.  What a little finger paint and your hand and your imagination can do!  The kids are always into this book, it's perfect for your preschooler to first grader. 

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