I'm down to the wire to make my selection for Story Time with pre schoolers. I've read a wide assortment of children's books and many of them are quite good. Here are my top six contenders.
“The Cow Loves Cookies” by Karma Wilson. Who doesn’t like cookies? In this book it’s a farmer and a cow who treasure the sweet treats while the other farm animals eat their usual diet of hay, slop, corn, and chicken feed. The combo of rhyme and repetitive phrases make this a book children will find easy to grasp and memorize. And no doubt hunger for a chocolate chip cookie. Might need to bring a bag of Oreos if I choose to read this title.
“Moo” by David LaRochelle. Big surprise with this book: it only uses only six words to tell the story. The word “moo” turns up over 50 times. The story is simple, short and involves one cow who creates his own adventure. It’s a happy read providing there is creative expression and dynamics in the voice of the reader. Excellent way to show boys and girls how voice inflection is important when reading a story out loud.
“Mouse Went Out to Get a Snack” by Lyn Rossiter McFarland. Talk about a cute mouse! And a great illustrator. They are what make this book excel, along with a creative tale. Kids will enjoy the 10 different snacks the mouse attempts to confiscate, the mishap along the way, and cheerful ending.
"How Do Dinosaurs Love Their Dogs?” by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague. This series of ten books about dinosaurs are popular among boys. The simple stories are told in rhyme which most pre schoolers find fun. The colorful illustrations make these dinos seem friendly and aid in conveying the book’s message. One pre school director told me recently, “I bought the entire series simply because the kids love them.”
“Boom, Chicka, Rock” by John Archambault. Don’t get this book confused with “Chicka, Chicka, Boom, Boom,” the very popular title also by this author. This one is entirely different and just as good. Perfect for any child who is trying to learn to count, or tell time. The rhyming text and silly phrases make this book a winner.
“Joseph Had a Little Overcoat” by Simms Taback is more suitable for a group of first graders, but could be enjoyed by a younger child with adult’s guidance. The artwork is unique and it's no wonder it won the Caldecott Medal for best illustrated book. The use of die-cuts to convey the story definitely keeps children interested and guessing. The theme to "make something out of nothing" provides opportunity to talk to boys and girls about re-purposing rather than discarding old objects.
And which one did I choose to read at Story Time?
I went with "The Cow Loves Cookies."
But I'm also taking "Moo!" with me. If there is time I'll have my puppet, Spice, read that title. She loves tacos, books and being around kids.
Plan to be back later this week with a batch of books for we "older" readers. Happy to report a number of them rate at least four stars!
P.S. What are you reading these days? Any worth four stars? Would love to know about them.