Archive for February, 2017

I Appreciate You: Sports Team Bonding Idea

I Appreciate You: Sports Team Bonding Idea

I posted on two of my kids’ I Appreciate You graduating gift idea — Grasshopper and Sensei and my son’s 5th grade I Appreciate You class certificates are on my blog. The ideas is that each student in the class writes one sentence about every other student, and these are typed up on a certificate. It’s a snapshot of how they were perceived during their year in 5th grade.

I Appreciate You: Sports Team Bonding Idea

The problem is that I can’t find PickyKidPix’s I Appreciate You certificate! I searched and searched, and I can’t find it. She doesn’t seem too unhappy about this, but luckily I found something similar for her from her old soccer team. In 5th grade, her town soccer coach had each player write I Appreciate You cards and exchange them before a game. It was a nice way to build team bonding. To be honest, PickyKidPix often forgot to do hers so she had to give a verbal one. These were the cards that she received.

I Appreciate You Because…

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Picture Books Celebrating Imagination and Friendship

Picture Books Celebrating Imagination and Friendship & GIVEAWAY

I’m delighted to have Jackie Azúa Kramer guest posting today with a picture book list that celebrates imagination and friendship. She picked some of my all time favorite picture books in her ten book list; half about Imagination and half about Friendship.

Her newest picture book is also a perfect blend of friendship and imagination. We are giving away a copy of The Green Umbrella too! Please see the giveaway at the bottom of the post.

The Green Umbrella by Jackie Azúa Kramer, illustrated by Maral Sassouni

Elephant’s green umbrella is also Hedgehog’s boat, Cat’s tent, Bear’s flying machine, and Rabbit’s cane. Elephant doesn’t limit the use of the green umbrella to keeping himself dry either; it’s his sword, balancing pole, and baseball bat. As the rain clears up, the animals each want their toy back. Instead of fighting, they come up with the perfect solution for more adventures together. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

How about you? What are your favorite books that spark the imagination, celebrate friendship or even BOTH?! Thanks for sharing!

Picture Books that Spark a Kid’s Imagination

1. The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires

A little girl has an amazing idea that she’s going to make the most magnificent thing! All she has to do is make it. But making her magnificent thing leads down a frustrating path of trial and error. This book best reflects–Inspiration + motivation + passion = Endless possibilities. The girl’s emotional journey reminds a child not to quit. [picture book ages 3 and up]

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Diverse Children's Books

#DiverseKidLit Theme is Love for Feb!

Our theme for #DiverseKidLit in February is Love. Please consider sharing diverse books and resources that support love and families. (As always, the theme is only a suggestion. Diverse posts on alternate topics are always welcome.)

For February’s #DiverseKidLit theme of love, I chose this wonderful documentary novel of Loving vs. Virginia. A few things to note:

  • Their last name is Loving.
  • Their crime was loving each other.
  • This happened in the state of Virginia, whose state slogan is “Virginis is for Lovers.
  • Had Richard Loving been African American and Mildren white, this case would never had been tried. He would have been lynched.

Loving vs. Virginia: A Documentary Novel of the Landmark Civil Rights Case by Patricia Hruby Powell, illustrated by Shadra Strickland

2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the landmark case that made mixed race marriages legal. That Richard and Mildred’s very last name is “LOVING” and that their crime is loving each other says something about fate perhaps. In 1955, in Virginia — state slogan: Virginia is for Lovers (formerly Virginia is for history lovers)– two teenagers fell in love amidst segregation, racism and cruelty.

Their marriage broke a Virginia 1924 law to preserve racial integrity and keep children of partial white ancestry out of all white schools. The fact that this law implied that one race was superior to another — this legislation allowed Negroes to marry those of other races, thus subjecting them to losing their racial purity — was an inconsistency that won their case.

It took nine long years during which they lived in exile in Washington DC for them to win their case. Told in mesmerizing free verse that makes you feel like you’ve stepped back in time, this chapter book is as important as their landmark case. Novel in verse, ages 8 and up.

What Is #DiverseKidLit?

Diverse Children’s Books is a book-sharing meme designed to promote the reading and writing of children’s books that feature diverse characters. This community embraces all kinds of diversity including (and certainly not limited to) diverse, inclusive, multicultural, and global books for children of all backgrounds.

We encourage everyone who shares to support this blogging community by visiting and leaving comments for at least three others. Please also consider following the hosts on at least one of their social media outlets. Spread the word using #diversekidlit and/or adding our button to your site and your diverse posts.

DiverseKidLit

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Fun Nonfiction Fact Books for Kids & GIVEAWAY!

Fun Nonfiction Fact Books for Kids & GIVEAWAY!

I’m not sure if it’s a boy versus girl thing, but my son loves nonfiction fact books much more than my two daughters ever did. I have to say that I’m enjoying learning about various topics; I feel like I’m preparing for Jeapordy! or an intense round of Trivial Pursuit.

I’m giving away a copy of My Encyclopedia of Very Important Things by DK, a gateway book for younger kids to explore nonfiction reference books. Please fill out the Rafflecopter at the bottom to enter.

What about you? Do you and your kids like nonfiction books? Thanks for sharing your favorites in the comments!

Fun Nonfiction Fact Books for Kids

My Encyclopedia of Very Important Things by DK

This is a four-color appealing encyclopedia for younger kids. With illustrations mixed with photographs, there is plenty of explanations written in short, simple sentences to keeps kids engaged. It’s perfect for young learners with lots of questions. [nonfiction illustrated encyclopedia, ages 5 and up]

It Can’t Be True 2 by DK

This is similar to National Geographic Kids 5,000 Awesome Facts [About Everything] so when you finish up that book and feel a void, continue with this series by DK. My son and I are working our way through the National Geographic Kids series of fact books and these fact based trivia books make perfect bedtime reading material because you can start and stop at any point, making for easier “lights out.” It Can’t Be True 2 series has more illustrations with bigger type than the National Geographic Kids 5,000 Awesome Facts so it might be more appealing to reluctant readers. If you read aloud to your child, you can start at a younger age, like 5 or 6. If your child is reading independently, then this series would be perfect for ages 8 and up. [nonfiction fact book, ages 6 and up]

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Scholastic Kids and Family Reading Report

Kids & Family Reading Report from Scholastic

Scholastic released its latest research from Kids & Family Reading Report, 6th edition. Read to learn what kids – and parents – want in books. One key finding: kids need for more guidance on books to read for fun.

For 10 years, this nationally representative research from Scholastic has surveyed kids ages 6-17 and their parents (with an additional sample of parents with children ages 0–5) around attitudes and behaviors about reading books for fun.

This year, key findings include the growth of reading aloud to young children, inequities around access to books, a look at diversity in children’s books, and a focus on reading attitudes and behaviors of African-American and Hispanic families as well as parents’ list of books/series every child should read, kids’ favorite books, and summer reading.

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Family Vacation in Quebec City, Canada

Family Vacation in Quebec City, Canada

Our short but sweet driving vacation to Quebec City was a lot of fun. We always have a great time in Canada so much so that our youngest wants to move there someday.

Family Vacation in Quebec City, CanadaLast summer we drove to Ottawa to catch the Women’s World Cup Soccer Quarter Finals: U.S.A. versus China. This time, the old walled city beckoned.

Family Vacation in Quebec City, Canada

I did some research to supplement my husband’s guide-book to plan our family vacation to Quebec City. I had earmarked: Aquarium du Quebec, Old City, Musee National des Beaux-Arts du Quebec, Montmorency Falls, Samuel Champlain Walkway, and The Battlefields Park: Abraham’s Bus and the Odyssey experience at the Plains of Abraham. Read more…