The Smiley Book of Colors by Ruth Kaiser – Saturday Story Spotlight

Welcome to Saturday Story Spotlight, my feature where I discuss books my husband and I are reading with our son, Daniel. These are books that he, we, or all of us particularly enjoy.

The Smiley Book of Colors by Ruth Kaiser
Published by Golden Books, an imprint of Random House

Smiles are contagious, whether from a family member, or made out of macaroni and cheese. Ruth Kaiser makes a point of seeing – and photographing – smiley faces everywhere and they are highlighted in The Smiley Book of Colors. Sorted by color and accompanied by brief rhyming text on each page, there are some 30 smileys faces found in every day items in The Smiley Book of Colors in addition to those found on the end papers.

I must admit, I was skeptical about The Smiley Book of Colors, most of all whether Daniel would appreciate it. Surely 2 and 1/2 is too young, I thought, to comprehend something as abstract as faces in inanimate objects. Luckily I took a chance with it anyway, because Daniel absolutely adores The Smiley Book of Colors. He seemed to be not entirely sure what he was looking at when he first flipped through the book, but once we showed him one smile, he could see them in each and every picture and found each of them absolutely delightful. He can also tell us what most of the objects actually are as well. In addition, the book is enhanced for him by the color groupings; not only does he want to go through and find all the faces, he goes through and announces the color on each page as well.

The Smiley Book of Colors will both delight children, and teach them to look for the creative and unexpected in the world all around them.

Buy this book from:
Powells | Indiebound*

Source: Publisher
* These links are all affiliate links. If you buy your book here I’ll make a very small amount of money that goes towards hosting, giveaways, etc.
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The Danny Books – Saturday Story Spotlight

Welcome to Saturday Story Spotlight, my feature where I discuss books my husband and I are reading with our son, Daniel. These are books that he, we, or all of us particularly enjoy.

The Danny Books by Mia Coulton

When one of my husband’s colleagues heard that our son’s name is Daniel, she told us that we just had to read the Danny books, written by a friend of hers who is a former reading recovery teacher. We filed the information away to look into, but before long, a package we weren’t expecting appeared for us, filled with Danny books.

The Danny books are comprised of engaging photographs of the dog, Danny, along with simple text with lots of space between words and sentences, to make it easy to read for younger children. Although for early readers, these are not phonics-based books. Instead they use high frequency words and, in some of the books, repetitive language to tell Danny’s story.

Unlike many of the early reader books, though, from what I have read the Danny books actually have value for reading to your child beyond just recognition of sight words or phonics-building patterns. The stories, when set besides the photographs of Danny, are engaging and entertaining. Daniel can easily sit for three or more in a row and they have a tendency to make him laugh. Even though he’s too young to be trying to actually figure out the words himself, he also likes to just sit and look at the books for their photographs of dogs and make up his own stories. So far his favorite two stories are Five Danny Dogs and Danny’s Hair is Everywhere.

The Danny books can be bought either in sets with varying degrees of difficulty within the set, or by reading level.
Buy these books from:
www.maryruthbooks.com

Source: Gift
* These links are all affiliate links. If you buy your book here I’ll make a very small amount of money that goes towards hosting, giveaways, etc.
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Will You Wear a Blue Hat? – Saturday Story Spotlight

Welcome to Saturday Story Spotlight, my feature where I discuss books my husband and I are reading with our son, Daniel. These are books that he, we, or all of us particularly enjoy.

Will You Wear a BLUE Hat?by Scholastic
Published by Children’s Press, an imprint of Scholastic

First farm animals, now primary colored outerwear. I’m starting to really dig the Rookie Toddler series from Scholastic. In Will You Wear a BLUE Hat, a little boy is being questioned by an unseen other about which of his primary colored pieces of clothing he will wear in order to go outside and stay warm.

We read this book three times just today, because it is just awesome. Daniel is making really good progress on his letters (he can identify almost all of them, and say nearly the entire alphabet) and can count to 10 pretty well, and knows lots of animal names and noises, even some shapes, so I figured the next thing we need to work on is colors. I adore Will You Wear a BLUE Hat for that.

For starters, all of the color names are printed in their eponymous color. The question (for example, “Will you wear a blue hat?”) is repeated in a sing song fashion with a great cadence, with the options shown, and then on the next page the child is seen wearing the item. It was a great conversation starter about color, we talked about all the different colored items on the page, and by the third time we had read the book, Daniel seemed quite confident about naming the color of each item.

I taught elementary school, so I am comfortable pulling out textual and pictoral elements to enrich a reading time, but for parents who are not comfortable with this, this series of books has “Rookie Storytime Tips” in the back of each one, giving clues for taking the learning experience besides just the text in the book.

I’ll be looking for more from this series, and I’m sure we haven’t read this one for the last time.

Buy this book from:
Powells | Indiebound*

Source: Library copy
* These links are all affiliate links. If you buy your book here I’ll make a very small amount of money that goes towards hosting, giveaways, etc.
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Everywhere a Moo Moo – Saturday Story Spotlight

Welcome to Saturday Story Spotlight, my feature where I discuss books my husband and I are reading with our son, Daniel. These are books that he, we, or all of us particularly enjoy.

Everywhere a Moo, Moo by Scholastic
Published by Children’s Press, an imprint of Scholastic

Despite the suggestive title, Everywhere a Moo, Moo is not the entirety of Old McDonald Had a Farm. According to some reviews I’ve seen, some readers who were expecting Old McDonald have been somewhat disappointed. Instead, each page has an animal – the cow, for example – and says, “Old McDonald had a cow. Here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo, moo.” The book goes through a slew of Old McDonald-worthy farm animals: cow, pig, sheep, duck, horse.

Let me tell you, this book has been GOLDEN around here lately. We love it because it has really solidified Daniel’s naming of these basic farm animals (he was a little iffy on ‘sheep’ before) and his command of the animals’ noises (‘oink’ and ‘quack’ are now second nature). Daniel loves it because there are ANIMALS, people! Plus, he gets to interact with it, I read “Old McDonald had a…” and he gets to fill in the name of the animal AND tell me what the animal says. Plus there are pictures of real animals, not drawings, and that realism is always a plus. I think we read this every night for three or four weeks, and are still reading it occasionally.

This is a fun, well constructed way to work on farm animals. Lots of learning here, and lots of room to make it interactive for the child who is really starting to ‘get’ them.

Buy this book from:
Powells | Indiebound | Amazon*

Source: Personal copy
* These links are all affiliate links. If you buy your book here I’ll make a very small amount of money that goes towards hosting, giveaways, etc.

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