The Bookbag, Books for Ages 4 to 8, July/August 2006

Between technology issues and Ernesto, it has been one wild week here in the Tub. Now that the power is back let’s get rolling on telling you about some terrific books. You might notice a theme here.

Hippo! No Rhino! , Jeff Newman. This book (mostly) without words is a tale of mistaken identity that gives kids a chance to create their own story. (Little, Brown and Company, 2006)

Molly McSholly Conquers Kindergarten
, Tracy Uttley. Molly likes being home. It’s the place she feels safest. She loves playing with Sir Lance, and he keeps her safe. She decides that the key to being safe at school is to be like Sir Lance. So Molly decides that wearing armor to school will protect her. Does it work? This is a picture book that uses humor to help soothe those first-day-of-school fears. (Beaver’s Pond Press, 2004)

The Rainbow Web, Cheryl Block. Little spider’s favorite thing is the rainbow that is reflected on his web each morning. When he discovers that by eating berries he can spin his own rainbow, he is most excited. That is, until the insects stop getting caught in his web. This is a picture book with lessons for being one’s self, as well as understanding how nature works. What sets this title apart from other books with similar focus is the CD. You can read the story as an e-Book (or have it read to you); enjoy activities related to the book; or learn more about real spiders. “This is a book with long-term value for pre-readers through mid-grade elementary school students. We can envision any number of science projects heading our way.” (Block Publishing, 2005)

Something Shiny, Something Round, Julie Goulis Sam, Sally, and Suzy waste no time getting out in the snow. It may be melting, but their imaginations are soaring. This book is a prelude to lots of pretend play, any time of year! (Bubblegum Books, 2006)

Trudy and the Captain’s Cat, Yetti Frenkel. Every day, Trudy looks out the window and sees the world go by. She is itching for an adventure and wants to see the world. When Mrs. Gardini leaves for the market, Trudy sneaks out behind her. Determined just to LOOK at the fish, Trudy can’t help herself and steals one. The angry fishmonger chases her to the pier, leaving Trudy at the water’s edge. It is there she meets Albi, a seafaring cat who tells Trudy of her own adventures. This is a picture book that doubles as a folk tale or ghost story. (Snow Tree Books, 2004)

What a Day it Was at School!, Jack Prelusky. Pick a topic related to school, and you’ll find a poem about it here. Whether you’re in pre-K or high school, these cats have tales to tell about their day … from math to history, from your backpack to lunch in the cafeteria. This is a collection of poems in a picture-book format. “This book will provide some much needed after school humor!” (Greenwillow Books, an Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, 2006)

What Went Right Today?, Joan Buzick and Lindy Judd. From the moment he woke up until he fell off to sleep, a young boy offers thoughts about the positive things in his world. Throughout the book he follows up his activities with questions for the reader/listener about his/her own day. This is a rhyming picture book with a story and questions to help kids think affirmatively and engage them in the material. A CD offers a musical rendition of the book’s content. (Buz-Land Presentations, Inc., 2005)