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7th Grade Books from a 7th Grade Girl

7th Grade Books from a 7th Grade Girl

Today’s book list comes from my “adopted” daughter Sidnie. Despite a busy summer, she’s managed to read an impressive 16 books!

I should note that Sidnie isn’t bothered by graphic violence or scary books. In fact, against PickyKidPix’s horror, she read The Hunger Games in third grade. PickyKidPix herself defied me by reading it in fourth grade; I wanted her to wait at least one more year. They both wanted to read the book before seeing the movie which how that went down.

With PickyKidPix‘s influence (they both did their book reviews for me at the same time), she tells it like it is: the good, the bad, and the boring.

 

I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai and Christina Lamb

That was a really good book about a girl standing up for women’s education and it’s a true story. [autobiography, ages 11 and up]

A Chance in the World: An Orphan Boy, A Mysterious Past, and How He Found a Place Called Home by Thomas Nelson

This was my favorite book that I read this summer. It was about an orphan boy who had to go through a lot of bad things but he found his way out. [adult memoir, ages 14 and up]

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My 2017 Newbery Predictions

My 2017 Newbery Predictions

The Newbery Medal was named for eighteenth-century British bookseller John Newbery. It is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children.

Balderdash!: John Newbery and the Boisterous Birth of Children’s Books by Michelle Markel, illustrated by Nancy Carpenter

This is the true story of how children’s books came to be, the brainchild of John Newbery, considered the father of children’s literature. In 1726, there were no children’s books at all. His first book, A Little Pretty Pocket-Book, was marketed as a book and a toy! It was a hit! For kids who appreciate Newbery books, have them read this engaging picture book biography, about the man whose name is a book award, but his own story largely unknown. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

I’ve been trying to pick Newbery winners for some time now, analyzing what pundits have picked and noting what books seem to be getting buzz all year. Sometimes this is a good predictor; sometimes not.

I have a few theories about what I think makes a good Newbery pick, but, of course, the actual Newbery committee pays no mind to what I think and has their own criteria which may or may not change slightly from year to year. Who knows?

A Newbery Book Should Have Broad Age Appeal

There’s nothing worse, in my mind, with a Newbery winner that is too high such that only the most advanced elementary school readers can attempt it. The Westing Game is a good example of that for me. It won in 1978.

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DIY dog biscuits for charity

Join Us for 2016 Joy Maker Challenge

This is a sponsored post for Hasbro and generationOn. I wanted to share some easy and fun ways for kids to give back through the Joy Maker Challenge. My opinions, as always, are my own.

“If you wait until you can do everything for everybody, instead of something for somebody, you’ll end up not doing nothing for nobody.” ~ Malcom Bane

I’m so excited to tell you about the 2016 Joy Maker Challenge. Hasbro and generationOn, the youth division of Point of Light, have partnered for the seventh annual Joy Maker Challenge, a campaign encouraging youth ages 5-18 to spread joy to people in need during the holidays through volunteer service. Since the campaign’s inaugural year in 2010, more than 960,000 total acts of service have been completed, with 6 million dollars’ worth of toys donated to Toys for Tots by Hasbro.

Joy Maker Guide Challenge for Kids

“Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.” ~ Albert Einstein

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Our 2017 Caldecott Predictions

Our 2017 Caldecott Predictions

I’m no expert in predicting the Caldecott but it’s a fun exercise. While it’s an award for illustration, I think it’s more than that.

The Caldecott Medal was named in honor of nineteenth-century English illustrator Randolph Caldecott. It is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children.

dis·tin·guished

successful, authoritative, and commanding great respect.

Caldecott medal

Caldecott Picture Books Should Appeal to a Wide Audience

The Caldecott is determined by adults, first and foremost, so the picture book has to appeal to adult sensibilities who then imagine this book for a young audience. I think this broad audience is also a fundamental characteristic for winning a Caldecott. In fact, the broader the better, both in age and in subject matter.
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#ReadYourWorld Book Jam 2017 with CBC

#ReadYourWorld Book Jam 2017

We are thrilled to be working with the Children’s Book Council to spotlight 24 diversity authors and illustrators in celebration of Multicultural Children’s Book Day! They will each be sharing eight multicultural children’s books during the months of January and February.

#ReadYourWorld Book Jam 2017 with CBC

 

January 2: Jo Meserve Mach and Vera Lynne Stroup-Rentier

Books For Kids with Disabilities: Jo Meserve Mach & GIVEAWAY

Books For Kids with Disabilities: Jo Meserve Mach & GIVEAWAY

 

January 3: Darcy Pattison

Adoption Chapter Books: Darcy Pattison & GIVEAWAY

Adoption Chapter Books: Darcy Pattison & GIVEAWAY


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Hands On Geography Fun for Kids

Hands On Geography Fun for Kids

There is absolutely nothing that I hate more than to help my kids memorize factoids for a test. I figured out from my two older kids that their 4th grade social studies curriculum includes learning to spell and locate the 50 States, with state capitals as extra credit.

Trying to learn one section of the country every few weeks can be stressful, so I got the jump on it long before my son reached fourth grade. We played the Scrambled States Game, a board game, and did many, many rounds of geography trivial pursuit at dinner using map placemats. Beautifully illustrated atlas map books also make learning a pleasure. My kids would also credit this song about the capitals in South America and online learning games.

From my webpage: 70+ Free Education Games. This is the Geography section:

  • Name Countries of the World
  • Name the U.S. States
  • Name U.S. State Capitals
  • State Capitals of USA Game
  • Printable World Maps Free printable maps of the world’s countries. Each map is a blank outline, the better for quizzing students on cities, counties, and terrain!
  • 50 States Detailed information about each of the 50 states including abbreviations and capital cities. Excellent for teaching U.S. geography!
  • Where’s That U.S. State? This fun geography game times your students as it asks them to locate each state. How fast can your students locate each of the 50 states?
  • State Capital Crossword Puzzle

How about you? What are fun ways you and your kids are learning geography? Thanks for sharing!

Hands On Geography Fun for Kids

Barefoot Books World Atlas by Nick Crane, illustrated by David Dean

This is my go to atlas book. With large beautiful illustrations of maps and interesting details on the sidebars, some of which fold out, this is a book to savor and enjoy. There’s also a fold out atlas in the back perfect for mounting on a wall. You can use the wall atlas to point to a location and then look it up in the book, or just browse through the book continent by continent. There is also an accompanying app! [nonfiction atlas book, ages 4 and up]

Atlas of Animals Adventures: A collection of nature’s most unmissable events, epic migrations, and extraordinary behavior by Rachel Williams and Emily Hawkins, illustrated by Lucy Letherland

For animal lovers, here’s another way to look at an atlas. This book celebrates how animals survive in the wild through both migration but also through animal behavior. Animals are grouped by continent and country. This oversized book is also gorgeously illustrated and begs to be browsed. You can also make this book into a game with the Can You Find? “Where’s Waldo” section in the back. [nonfiction animal atlas book, ages 4 and up]

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Sponsorships for Multicultural Children's Book Day ends Jan 1st!!!

Sponsorships for Multicultural Children’s Book Day ends Jan 1st!!!

Wondering how fundraising is going for Multicultural Children’s Book Day? Are you an author or publisher thinking of getting involved? Our deadline to become a sponsor is CLOSING soon on January 1st, 2017!! Please go HERE to view extended details and benefits of all of our Sponsorship Levels including Author Sponsors.

ScholasticFor  our upcoming Multicultural Children’s Book Day on January 27th (our 4th year!), we have some amazing Sponsors in place. We are thrilled to have Scholastic as a Platinum Sponsor. Other Medallion Level Sponsors include Carole P. Roman, Audrey Press, KidLitTV, Capstone Young Readers, Gayle Swift, Wisdom Tales Press, Lee& Low Books, The Pack-n-Go Girls, Live Oak Media, Charlotte Riggle and Chronicle Books.

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017
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Edible Gifts for the In-Laws

Edible Gifts for the In-Laws

My mom just moved into a one bedroom apartment in Independent Living facility. My sister moved her in and it was a little like moving one’s kid into a college dorm. They got her new stuff: bed, TV, and furniture … and left a lot behind in her old house.

That’s because she has a tendency towards hoarding, so this is a chance to do things differently. And she likes having less stuff around to collect dust; it’s liberating to live more simply.

As a result, when I buy her gifts for Mother’s Day, Christmas, and her birthday, I am now giving her something that can be enjoyed but does not stick around. Edible presents fit the bill perfectly!

Edible Gifts for the In-Laws

Japanese Confections: Wagashi

My mom was born in San Francisco where her parents immigrated from Hiroshima, Japan. She likes Japanese mochi and I found a high end Japanese confectionary bakery, Minamoto Kitchoan, that delivers “wagashi” — Japanese sweets. Not all the items can be shipped but her favorite kind can.

Maccha Mochi

Maccha Mochi. Sweetened red beans covered with sticky green tea mochi.

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Circle of Gratitude custom bookmarks

Gratitude Bookmark GIVEAWAY!

There is something to be grateful for every day…Circle of Gratitude custom bookmarks

I met Charlotte of Circle of Gratitude on Instagram and today she’s giving away 11 beautiful custom bookmarks tied to these books:

Little Elliot, Big Fun

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