Perfect Picture Book Friday: Hello, My Name is Tiger PLUS Giveaway

Today’s Perfect Picture Book Friday selection is coming just at the right time!

But before we get to the review, we have TWO giveaway winners to announce!

I feel blessed that our author guests and their publishers have been so generous this year.

The winner of a copy of CHICKEN WANTS A NAP by Tracy Marchini is….

INGRID BOYDSTON

And the winner of a copy of A FAMILY IS A FAMILY IS A FAMILY by Sara O’Leary is…

LILY ERLIC

CONGRATULATIONS, dear ladies. I will contact you ASAP.

And now for our Perfect Picture Book!

School is just around the corner for many kids…and it may have already started for some. Whether it’s the first ever day of school, the first day at a new school, or the first day in a new class, kids often have a lot of anxiety. Will they make new friends? Will other kids laugh at them? Will they find their way around? Will they like their new teacher?

 cover

 

HELLO, MY NAME IS TIGER

Written and illustrated by Jen Goldfinger

Published by HarperCollins (2016)

Ages: 4-8

Themes: first day of school, anxiety, be yourself

Synopsis:

From Amazon

A reassuring picture book for back-to-school jitters!

Toby likes being a cat more than he likes being a boy. So when it’s time to go to school, he becomes a timid kitten. But when Toby finally gathers the courage to join in with the other kids, he finds out that everything is more fun with friends.

Why I like this book:

  • Wonderful text
  • Bold bright colorful illustrations
  • Super message for kids

Related Activities

ttigerPhoto courtesy: http://www.dltk-kids.com

Paper Plate Tiger

If you’ve visited my blog before, you probably know I LOVE paper plate crafts for kids. They are quick, easy, and inexpensive…plus kids really enjoy making them and they can be hung up and displayed proudly or used for role playing or children’s theater.

You will need: Paper plate, markers or crayons, scissors, glue, construction paper.

For detailed instructions: http://www.dltk-kids.com/animals/metiger.html

And one of the best things we can do for our children when they are anxious about something is to LISTEN, really listen.

Thank you so much for stopping by today…I hope you’ll be back tomorrow when author/illustrator Jen Goldfinger is in the Will Write for Cookies house with an eye-opening Q&A and a yummy original take on the classic Toll House Cookie recipe.

Dont forget to leave a comment to qualify for Jen’s giveaway of a copy of HELLO, MY NAME IS TIGER.

For more wonderful picture book reviews you will find hundreds on Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Book site.

Have a wonderful weekend, dear friends!

Perfect Picture Book Friday: Chrysanthemum

The summer is winding down. Even though there is still another month until the official start of fall, I feel the crispness in the air when I go out early in the morning.

With the end of the summer comes the beginning of the new school year. As a child, that was heralded by the purchase of a school outfit, a shiny pair of shoes, and brand new school supplies. Many years later, as a teacher, I busied myself with preparing the room for a new flock of kindergarteners.

Parents…you have a difficult job…helping your child adjust to a new teacher, a new class, perhaps even a new school. And today’s Perfect Picture Book Friday selection is a great story to read, especially if your child seems to be having a problem transitioning to the new situation.

chrysanthemum

Chrysanthemum

Written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes

Publisher: Greenwillow Books (1991)

Ages: 3 and up

Themes:

Teasing, acceptance, self-esteem

Synopsis:

From Amazon:

Chrysanthemum thinks her name is absolutely perfect—until her first day of school. “You’re named after a flower!” teases Victoria. “Let’s smell her,” says Jo. Chrysanthemum wilts. What will it take to make her blossom again?

Opening Lines:

The day she was born was the happiest day in her parents’ lives.

“She’s perfect,” said her mother.

“Absolutely perfect,” said her father.

And she was.

She was absolutely perfect.

Why I like this book:

  • Kids need help dealing with the challenges of childhood…Kevin Henkes understands this perfectly and he delivers a story that every child and every parent will be able to relate to.
  • I love that this book provides an opportunity for open communication about what might be bothering your child.

 

RELATED ACTIVITIES

 YouTube reading of Chrysanthemum: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2pCR8YHszM

 Teaching guide on Kevin Henkes website: http://www.kevinhenkes.com/book/chrysanthemum-2/

 Logo final BB2 1 inch 300dpi

 This post is part of a series for parents and teachers called Perfect Picture Book Fridays hosted by Susannah Leonard Hill. Click on her link and find lots of other picture book suggestions with summaries and activities.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend, dear friends and readers. We will be announcing the winner of the copy of Jill Esbaum’s If a T-Rex Crashes Your Birthday Party next month…and stay tuned for lots more book giveaways because there will be one with every Will Write for Cookie post. I’m SO VERY EXCITED about the line-up of authors and illustrators for the rest of the year: Joan Leotta, Sylvia Liu, Emma Bland Smith, Jessica Lawson, and on the third Saturday in December…Duncan Tonituah. Right now, I’m putting together next year’s schedule…and I can tell you that March 2017 is going to be one busy month…with Marcie Colleen spotlighting as our Will Write for Cookies author, the #50 Precious Words Contest (oh my gosh…do you think we will have another incredible turnout…will we surpass last year’s 128 entries?), and the launch of my own debut nonfiction picture book, Sweet Dreams, Sarah.

I’m eating lots of Wheaties in preparation for all of that!!!! And I sure do hope you all join me!

Perfect Picture Book Friday: Kindergarten Rocks!

TGIF! There’s been a lot going on around here the last few days:

  1. Susanna Hill has her annual Halloweensie writing contest. Click on this link to get more details: http://susannahill.blogspot.com/2015/10/its-about-that-time.html
  2. There is also a bunch of great picture book reviews with activities on her website: http://susannahill.blogspot.com/2015/10/perfect-picture-book-friday-marilyns.html
  3. Tomorrow is Will Write for Cookies featuring…KATIE DAVIS! I know you will want to stop by on Saturday to hear what she has to say.
  4. And I just signed with the incredible Essie White and Storm Literary Agency!!!!

Sign contract 2

As you can imagine, I’ve been happy dancing since before the ink dried on the contract. But I did take a bit of time out to post my Perfect Picture Book Friday – and it just happens to be a picture book by tomorrow’s guest author/illustrator, Katie Davis.

kindergarten rocks

KINDERGARTEN ROCKS

Written and illustrated by Katie Davis Continue reading

PB 14:14 – Day 8 – Top Ten Elements in Picture Books – Theme

This is the last day of the PB 14:14 Challenge…and although I already posted today, I’m going to add an additional post because I missed one day last week.

This is one of my all-time favorite books…before it was published, the author read it to kids in schools, libraries and children’s hospitals.

cover of the kissing hand 

Title: The Kissing Hand Continue reading

3 top creative snacks for your child’s lunchbox

Sometimes as parents we have to be magicians in order to insure that our children pull out healthy snacks from their lunch boxes.  Whether your child goes to a daycare or preschool facility or is home with you, it’s important that he be eating healthy, nutritious foods…both at mealtimes and for snacks.

If the facility provides the snacks and meals, it’s crucial to find out what is being served.  And, if you are not happy, please don’t hesitate to make suggestions and, if necessary, band together with other parents to work towards upgrading the menus and ingredients used.

On the other hand, if you are providing the food that fills the breakfast plate, lunchbox and dinner table, you are in total control of what your child is eating.  This can be a daunting task…but it is wonderful because you can pick and choose the best ingredients and most healthful recipes.

Our children look forward to snacks…we can help fight the current trends of increased child-obesity, dental decay and juvenile diabetes by making those snacks high in nutrition and fiber and low in sugar and fat.

Here are three top creative snacks for your child’s lunchbox.  You and your child can spend some quality time together, making these simple, delicious and healthful treats.

I. PEANUT BUTTER BALLS

You will need: 1/4 cup peanut butter (or other nut butter), 1/4 cup honey, 1/2 cup non-fat dried milk powder, 1/4 cup shredded coconut, a large bowl and a cookie sheet lined with wax paper.

  1. Mix the first 3 ingredients in a large bowl until well-blended.  Then roll into small balls (about 1 tablespoon each).
  2. Roll the balls in shredded coconut and place on cookie sheet.
  3. Refrigerate for 15-20 minutes.
  4. Place uneaten balls in a cover container and store in the refrigerator for up to a week (although they won’t remain uneaten for that long).
  5. This recipe makes about one dozen balls.  You can double or quadruple the recipe quite easily.  To go in your child’s lunchbox: wrap one or two balls in waxed paper and then put in a small sandwich baggie.

II. LION’S CANDY

You will need: 1/2 cup peanut butter (or other nut butter), 1/2 cup ground sunflower seeds, 1/4 cup instant dry milk, 1 Tb honey, 1/2 cup finely chopped raisins (or dates or other dried fruit), 1/2 tsp cocoa (optional) and a large bowl.

  1. Blend together nut butter and ground sunflower seeds.
  2. Stir in dry milk, honey and dried fruit.  Mix well (with hands, if necessary).
  3. If the mixture is too dry, add some liquid milk; if too wet, add more dry milk.
  4. Form into teaspoon-sized balls.  If desired, roll in cocoa powder.
  5. Makes about 2 dozen balls.  Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  To send in your child’s lunchbox, wrap 1 or 2 balls in waxed paper and put in a small sandwich baggie.

III. RAINBOW VEGGIE STICKS WITH NUTTY DIP

You will need: Assortment of colorful vegetables such as green and red peppers, carrots, zucchini and celery (use your imagination), 1/2 cup almonds (or other nuts), blender or food processor, small container and a large container.

  1. Wash the vegetables and cut in sticks.
  2. Grind the nuts.  Add a little olive oil or canola oil if the dip is too dry.
  3. Store the cut vegetables in a covered container in the refrigerator.
  4. Store the nut butter in a small covered container in the refrigerator.
  5. To send in your child’s lunchbox, put an assortment of the rainbow-colored vegetable sticks in a small sandwich baggie and put a tablespoon of the nut butter in a small covered container.

Chef Ann Cooper, director of nutritional services at Berkeley Unified School District and co-author of Lunch Lessons, has great ideas about our children’s nutrition and offers tips on how to improve it: www.thelunchbox.org

You can also find more information about healthy living and nutritious eating at: www.betternutrition.com and www.deliciousliving.com.

Why I LOVED the start of school

I know that many parents are anxious about their child starting school.  I’ve addressed that in previous posts as well as how to help a child who is anxious about going to school.  I began thinking about how I felt when my children started school: EXCITED, EAGER and HAPPY, and how my children felt about going to school: as far as I know they were EXCITED, EAGER, and HAPPY. And, even though it was a very LONG time ago, I can still remember how EXCITED, EAGER, and HAPPY I was when I started school.

So what did my mother do all those years ago to help me and my sister look forward to going to school with eager anticipation?  I know that I tried to copy her winning formula when it came time to send my own children to school. 

  • My mother had a matter-of-fact, upbeat and positive attitude about us going to school.  I never heard her say anything negative about the school or our teachers.  Children are so very sensitive to our emotions…if we are tense and anxious about something, they probably will be also.
  • We went to a neighborhood school, so we knew many of the children in our classes.  Try to make sure that your child has visited the school before the first day…you can also try to connect with other parents of his classmates and arrange playdates so that your child will feel more comfortable with the other children.
  • We got a new pair of SCHOOL shoes and a new outfit to wear on the first day.  And, when we got home from school each day, we took off our school clothes and put on play clothes.  Somehow, that made “school” a very special place.  Encourage your child to lay out his clothes the night before each school day…this will help lessen the last-minute rush in the morning.
  • My mother encouraged us to bring friends home after school (she was a stay-at-home mom…as were most moms in those days).  Whether you have a career or not, try to set aside some time, perhaps on the weekend, to enable your child to get together with some of her classmates.  Maybe you can form a group with several parents and alternate having a little monthly party to celebrate one of the children’s birthdays, a holiday or whatever you wish.
  • She loved hearing about our day at school…she was a great listener…what we did was important to her and she was happy to help us with homework or studying.  In the early grades, I can remember sitting at the kitchen table and having her help me cut and glue magazine pictures.  When I was in high school (and even in my college years), I can remember sitting on the floor at her feet, pad of paper and pen in hand, asking her, “Mom, how can I start this paper?”…and she would throw out several ideas and off I would go, scribbling like a maniac.  Often, I would wind up changing the beginning that she had suggested, but her encouragement and willingness to help gave me the courage to trust my own inspiration and creativity.  Try to be there for your child…always be ready to listen.
  • As the school year progressed, my parents attended as many school functions as they could, whether it was a meeting with the teacher or a play we were in.  This showed me that what happened at school was important to my parents, and therefore, to me.  Do your best to fit school functions into your schedule…if you are not able to attend an event, make sure there is someone else there to represent you so that your child doesn’t feel you don’t care…because then he might not either.

So why did I love the start of school: I believed my parents loved it also, I had new clothes and new shiny shoes, I was going to spend the day with friends, I knew my parents loved me, and I felt that school (and learning) was IMPORTANT.  When my children were ready to attend school, I tried to recreate what my mother had done for me.  And I hope that my children will do the same for their children.

    Great ideas for end-of-summer fun!

    We just got back from a five-day vacation in the mountains of Colorado.  The weather was perfect.  The fishing was great.  The cabin was outfitted with everything you could need…even a flat-screen TV which we never turned on because we were too busy during the day having fun outdoors and too tired at night to even want to watch anything.  Cell phones don’t work there and we didn’t bring the computer.  And I began to realize how life was like in the days before TV and computers and phones.  It’s not that I don’t appreciate the technology that allows each of us to know what is going on in the world the moment it happens.  But it made me more aware of how much closer a family could be if they were more isolated from all that is happening out there or if they made an effort to spend time together without the distractions that usually keep us going in different directions.

    So here’s a list of a few great ideas for end-of-summer fun that might possibly bring your family closer together and won’t cost a fortune:

    • Go camping…even for the day…but overnight, if possible.  Rent equipment or borrow it from friends if you don’t already have what you would need.
    • Check out local parks, museums and art galleries.  Some are free and many have special deals for families.  You might even purchase a museum membership that entitles your family to special museum privileges during the year.
    • Have an end-of-summer get-together.  If your child is going to school (or nursery school or daycare) this year, see if you can find out who will be in his/her class or group.  Invite the children and their parents…what an awesome way to help your child start the year already knowing some of his classmates.  The get-together can be a pot-luck with everyone bringing something to eat so that the burden of food is not all on you.  Also, have each family bring a favorite game…there will certainly be plenty to do.  Take lots of pictures and have your child help you make a collage or album of this special day.  He/she can bring it to school for show-and-tell…great for a child who is anxious about the first day of school…something like BILLY AND THE BIG NEW SCHOOL by Laurence and Catherine Anholt.
    • Plan to have dinner together as a family, if possible.  And please, turn the TV off and don’t answer the phone if it rings 🙂

    That’s it…just a few simple suggestions…hope they help you end the summer on a high note and begin the school year in a positive way.