Thursday, June 30, 2011

June: Around the Block with Sesame Street, Stevie Wonder and Grover

Oh, how awesome is this? Stevie and Grover! I am also "the short note singer." :~)

June: Community Service

This is so easy, but it's also helpful to your entire community. With you, totz can clean up trash at your local park. Make a difference today!

I found this adorable drawing on The Harmonica Pocket! Which makes me think how fun it would be to include more children's drawings at readertotz. Thoughts?

Monday, June 27, 2011

I like bugs: Lorena Siminovich

I was just out gardening this morning and put some time in with the roly polys. It now seems appropriate to share  I like bugs by Lorena Siminovich.

This touch-and-feel board book from Templar Books is a tactile discovery of five insect-y spreads. Your totz will have the opportunity to count beetles, butterflies, and bees. The texture inserts are inventive: glitter mylar for the dragonfly's body, satin for the butterflies, and fuzzy bottoms for the bees.

Lorena's collages provide variety in the layered papers which create foreground, objects, and backgrounds. There's so much subtle movement to see and appreciate; your totz will want to look at this work again and again. I like bugs is charming, especially outside, on a summer day!

I like bugs
by Lorena Siminovich
Templar Books, 2010

Friday, June 24, 2011

Poetry Friday: Humpty Dumpty

Wikipedia asserts Humpty is the most well-known Mother Goose rhyme in English. And I had forgotten Alice interviews Humpty in Through the Looking Glass. Here's to Humpty!


Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall;
All the King’s horses, and all the King’s men
Cannot put Humpty Dumpty together again.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Pig Takes A Bath: Michael Dahl

The title of this book and the cover design made this book stand out on the shelves. Once I ventured inside, I enjoyed the simple story with its striking, colorful art. It begins with an off-stage parent calling:

Little Pig WHERE are you?

Little Pig is having a great time in a mud puddle--that’s where he is. But now it’s time for a bath. Although Little Pig tries to dodge the whole bath thing, he winds up in the tub and undergoes the annoyance of a thorough, step-by-step de-mudding procedure. Until finally:

Little Pig, you’re CLEAN!

I won’t give away the ending, but Little Pig winds up more or less as he began. Totz will sympathize with this pig. They know what it’s like to have their playtime interrupted by the nuisance of bathtime. And they’ll giggle at the ending!

Also keep an eye out for Pony Brushes His Teeth and Bunny Eats Lunch!

Pig Takes A Bath

by Michael Dahl

illustrated by Oriol Vidal

Picture Window Books / Captstone Books, 2010

Friday, June 17, 2011

Poetry Friday: Little King Boggen

Little King Boggen He Built a Fine Hall - Mama Lisa's House of English Nursery Rhymes, Intro Image
Illustration by Frederick Richardson, Mother Goose, Volland Edition (1915)

Little King Boggen, he built a fine hall,
Pie-crust and pastry-crust, that was the wall;
The windows were made of black puddings and white,
And slated with pan-cakes,- you ne’er saw the like!

I'm craving some pancakes now, on this Poetry Friday! 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

June Older Sibling Pick: Cloudette

The minute I saw this cover, I wanted to read this picture book. Tom Lichtenheld's art has that effect on me. The book trailer is adorable, too. It's Cloudette's job resume as she searches for a way to make a difference in the world.

Cloudette has personality. The text and art manage to make her so believably childlike that totz and kidz will identify with her. She isn't as big as the other clouds and wonders what she can possibly contribute. She likes being small, but the big clouds can do a lot that she can't -- like creating thunderstorms, for instance. When one of the big clouds' storms whooshes her far away, she meets a frog with a problem--an empty pond. Her solution is perfect and I was cheering for her.

Tom Lichtenheld is also the illustrator of the New York Times bestselling Duck! Rabbit! and Shark vs. Train, and Zero the Hero (Feb 2012 / written by totz co-founder Joan Holub.)

author-illustrator: Tom Lichtenheld

Monday, June 13, 2011

Play, Baby: Disney Baby

Don't let this little cover image thwart you from finding this sweet board book! I had trouble finding a larger pic, maybe because attached to the top back cover is a clever rattle handle. Little hands will grab and hold onto this one!

Play, Baby, a Disney baby board book, features multicultural children with superimposed Disney characters, playing together. Dumbo shakes a rattle, the dalmatians stack cups, while Cinderella's mice help a tot push a ball.

I found the graphic combination charming. The palette is gentle and retro, causing the red handle to pop. The left spreads carry text and silhouettes of the Disney characters.

Grab Play, Baby for your totz and rattle around sweet images and words!

Play, Baby
Disney Press, 2010

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Photo Friday: Ellen Elizabeth Grover

How is it even possible my own sweet tot has graduated high school and earned her AA? How did 17 years fly past? Enjoy every moment and read, read, read to your totz before they fly...

Monday, June 6, 2011

1 2 3 4 U: David Horvath and Sun-Min Kim

I think this sturdy “Ugly Boards” board book is funny! It’s a counting book: 1 through 10, done in comic book style. The characters are all simple, cartoon monsters, who speak in speech bubbles.

Although the book looks simple, the more you look at the drawings, the more funny things you notice. Like the spread for number 8, for instance. On the left-hand page there are eight monster heads to count. Also, as concept reinforcements--the numeral “8” and the word “Eight.” On the right-hand page, there’s a monster at a lunch table, munching what looks like an 8-shaped pretzel. As you study more closely, you notice that there’s a small jar of “8 DIP” nearby to add a little flavor. And the speech bubble reads:
I ATE 8.

On the back, there’s a little monster holding two cookies in each hand. His speech bubble reads:
I wish 2 + 2 = 5.
(As a confirmed cookie monster myself, I know just how he feels!)

This is a quirky, enjoyable counting book that totz will likely want to ponder more than once. There are others in this series, including ABC U LATER, and UGLY COLORS.

About the creators:
Ugly Dolls creators David Horvath and Sun-Min Kim met at Parsons School of Design. Their characters grew out of letters they wrote to each other after Sun-Min returned to Korea.