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At the Heart of things… Engagement and Capturing Attention

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

…ting the stage and making you fall in love with her characters. My favorite part of the book is that at the beginning of every chapter, she has included a quote from another book or story. This has been very powerful for the students as well because they may have read the story she quotes. Though we are a ways from being done, the kids are already excited about reading the next books in the series as well: Inkspell and Inkdeath . Definitely…

Read About Recycling – Terrific Picture Books Help Children Gain Environmental Awareness

Monday, August 12th, 2013

…How to Take Care of the Environment – written by Leslie Garrett Early Reader about recycling, waste reduction, conserving energy, pollution published by Dorling Kindersley Part of Dorling Kindersley’s DK Readers series, Earth Smart is appropriate for children aged 7 to 9. Generously illustrated with photographs, it is rated “Level 2, Beginning to Read Alone.” Introducing ways we can help to look after the environment,…

Cozy Picture Book about Generosity and Gratitude – Bear Says Thanks

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

…to share. But me, I have nothing. My cupboards are bare!” Bear’s many friends are not at all troubled by the fact he can’t contribute food to the meal, they know there are other ways he can share. Part of a series of Bear books (Bear Feels Sick, Bear Stays Up for Christmas ….) Bear Says Thanks is a lovely celebration of friendship, generosity and gratitude, well suited to preschool age children. Gorgeous illustrations…

Meet Author Aldo Fynn

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Aldo Fynn enjoys writing wacky, fantastical stories. Prince Iggy and the Kingdom of Naysayer is his debut novel. It’s the first book in the Adventures of Prince Iggy Series. He’s also written two wacky, laugh-out-loud picture books. He lives under his desk and promises he won’t come out until Book 3 in the series is complete. Which is a shame because his desk is based in Los Angeles, where it’s sunny and 70 degrees most of the year. Twitter…

Unexpected Twists and Turns in Measle and the Wrathmonk Will Engage Reluctant Readers

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Measle and the Wrathmonk written by Ian Ogilvy Chapter book for middle grade and reluctant readers published by Oxford University Press Measle and the Wrathmonk is one of my new favourite chapter book series for middle grade readers. Ten year old Measle lives a deplorable life. He is hungry most of the time, he is fifthy and lives in a wretched house with a menacing guardian. He has been told that his parents were killed by a snake but Measle…

Gosh, kids who love ice hockey deserve better than this…

Monday, September 5th, 2011

There are so many terrific books that I usually don’t bother to comment on those that disappoint. I’d much rather write about winners than losers……but, I’ll make an exception this time. Last evening I picked up Sigmund Brouwer’s Timberwolf Hunt. My youngest boy plays ice hockey and I was interested to see how this writer approached the subject. Intended for readers aged 7 to 9, this easy-to-read chapter book…

Meet Author Neil McFarlane

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

…rson’s work resonated with you? I graduated through three authors as my childhood progressed: Enid Blyton (The Faraway Tree series), Tolkien (Lord of the Rings), and Ray Bradbury (The Illustrated Man). The Faraway Tree series and The Illustrated Man (and the Narnia series which I also loved) all involve traveling through a magic portal into other worlds. Lord of the Rings just was another world, no portal required. The common thread – of…

Wordless Picture Book Fun with Flora

Sunday, August 14th, 2016

…4 Caldecott Honor Book Flora and the Flamingo at Amazon.com Flora and the Flamingo at Amazon.ca Flora and the Peacockscreated by Molly Idle Wordless Picture Book published by Chronicle Kids The third book in Ms. Idle’s series, Flora and the Peacocks adds another dimension to her storytelling. In this wordless picture book, Flora introduces herself to two peacocks. One of the peacocks appears quite happy to have a new friend but the other…

Dads Reading to Boys – Raising Young Men Who Will Want to Read

Monday, August 29th, 2011

…e chapters of Harry Potter and then we all charged ahead when my husband returned. I will always be grateful for the message my husband gave his boys; he has always been eager to enjoy a good book with them (another favorite series was Kenneth Oppel’s Silverwing). But that particular incident was evidence of just how important reading with the boys is to him. It is not at all unusual for parents of preteens to be frustrated by their boys’ lack…

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? A Classic, Must-Read Picture Book

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014

Our goal with this new ‘Tuesday’ series is to introduce wonderful, classic picture books that are readily available in community libraries, in classrooms and in school libraries. We hope this on-going series will help families to discover outstanding stories and illustrations that have stood the test of time. We also hope that, through this series, young children and their caregivers will discover the joys of the read aloud…

Meet Author Crystal Vaagen

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

…children’s book, Robbie Zero, Super Girl Hero. In her free time, she likes to read French poetry, go on nature hikes, and bake cookies. Her latest project includes writing the second book in the Robbie Zero, Super Girl Hero series which will be published this year. Twitter account: @robbiezero Facebook page: Website URL Tell us about your latest published children’s book. Who do you think should read it? What are you most proud of? My…

Why bother? Reading with your kids

Friday, September 6th, 2013

…l of warranted pride, always wants to read to us. She reads us her three stories with unique and funny accents and expressions that never fail to make me smile. My ten year old reads her own book, a series with her dad and a series with me. There’s no lack of reading going on in our house. She was given the green light to read the rest of the Harry Potter series this summer (something I was torn about allowing as she is only ten). This…

The Knife of Never Letting Go written by Patrick Ness

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

…book. The book keeps you guessing all the way through. It is very fast paced and I like that the author broke the book up into parts so that there are multiple climaxes through out, leading up to the big one at the end. As a series opener it was very promising and I think it will appeal to almost all readers, especially if you like adventure, mystery or science fiction. The Knife of Never Letting Go is one of the best books I have read in recent…

Meet Author Frieda Wishinsky

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

…uld have loved to meet William Steig. I love that he began writing kids books late in life. His writing and art are funny and so “true”. Our reviews of some of Ms. Wishinky’s books: Canadian Flyer Adventure Series You’re Mean, Lily Jean Do you do school or library presentations? I do many school, library and conference presentations all over Canada and beyond. I love sharing writing ideas and books with kids and adults….

St. Patrick’s Day Picture Books

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

…7;s Day! at Amazon.ca Let’s Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day written by Peter and Connie Roop, illustrated by Gwen Connelly Non fiction picture book about St. Patrick’s Day published by Millbrook Press Part of a series of “Let’s Celebrate” books, Let’s Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day answers questions children in the primary grades might ask. Who was Saint Patrick? Why do we celebrate St. Patrick’s…

Classic Picture Book CLICK CLACK MOO Cows that Type

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

CLICK CLACK MOO Cows that Type written by Doreen Cronin and illustrated by Betsy Lewin Classic Picture Book published by Simon and Schuster Today we are continuing our Classic Picture Book series with a look at CLICK CLACK MOO Cows that Type. Originally published in 2001, it is a must-read for young children. When Farmer Brown’s cows get their hooves on an old typewriter, they put it to excellent use. They communicate with the farmer via…

Anti bullying book for beginning readers: Fancy Nancy and the Mean Girl

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

…oks for children, our page about anti bullying chapter books, graphic novels and novels for children , and our Pinterest anti bullying board Fancy Nancy and the Mean Girl is part of Harper Collins Children’s I Can Read series. Ranked by Harper Collins as “Beginning Reading Level 1,” it is generously illustrated and includes words such as appetite, splendid, speechless and canceled. Field Day is just around the corner. Most of…

Journey of a Reluctant Reader…apparently, “it’s on”

Monday, November 21st, 2011

Maybe reluctant reader is not the term I’m looking for… I’m beginning to think that reluctant is not the best term to define my reader. While some synonyms of this word, such as wary or opposed, might apply to his overall attitude toward reading, this last week assured me that he is not, as the definition states, unenthusiastic or unwilling. Many of the kids were very excited by the arrival of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Cabin…

Happy New Year…here’s to starting over with middle grade readers

Monday, January 9th, 2012

…I ended 2011 in the middle or near the end of too many projects. It’s always a dilmena to me; do I start fresh, trying to re-engergize and engage the kids all over, or do I carry on from where we left off and show them the value and necessity in finishing what we start?…

Can You See What I See? Toyland Express from Walter Wick

Sunday, December 4th, 2011

Can You See What I See? Toyland Express written and illustrated by Walter Wick Picture book published by Cartwheel Books, an imprint of Scholastic I have written previously of my younger son’s fascination with picture puzzles. When he was four or five, he would spend countless hours searching for objects and noticing small differences between pictures. He loved to have a picture puzzle book as one of his bedtime stories. He is still a…

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