Childrens Book Reading Extravaganza 2010: Picture Book Party #s 26-22

Sooooooo….someone skipped a week or two with the old countdown. Someone may be finding it a bit more difficult to fit it all in. Someone might get everything figured out and then suddenly a certain smaller someone decides to change things up.

Good thing that someone spent many years working in a public school which basically trains one to “be flexible” to the point of being a semi-pro contortionist.

Regardless, someone is back. Until everything changes again.

I guess I should start stretching….

On with the books!

#26 is Corduroy by Donald Freeman…a total classic. 

Corduroy (40th Anniversary Edition) (This may seem obvious at this point, but click on the image for links.) (Proceed at your own risk – with your credit card that is.)

Is there anyone who doesn’t love this story?  Corduroy is a bear who lives at a department store.  He is spied by a little girl one day, but her mother says she can’t buy him that day plus he has a missing button. That evening, Corduroy goes searching for his missing button around the department store, but is discovered by a night watchman and put back with the toys.  The next day, the girl comes back to buy Corduroy – she’s counted all the money in her piggy bank and realizes she has enough.  She takes Corduroy home, fixes him up and Corduroy realizes what friendship is all about.  

This book is just adorable.  With a little adventure, a little imagination and a lot of friendship, this story would make a fab read aloud with friends in kindergarten or first grade.  It’s got a basic, easy-to-follow story line, great pics and a wonderful message.  You know I’ve been brewing with ideas for a unit on unlikely friendships – this one would totes fit the bill!

Coming in at #25 is The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton.  I mean, talk about a string of old school classics lately on the old list, huh?

The Little House

The Little House on the hill is bought by a family who intends to never sell it and keep it the same forever.  The Little House watches the seasons change and is happy although she wonders what it would be like to live in the city.  Soon enough, houses are built up around The Little House, and before long she finds herself surrounded by a new city.  She misses the country because now everything seems so fast and the seasons seem the same.  One day, a girl, the great-great-granddaughter of the dude that bought the house stops and recognizes The Little House.  The girl hires some movers and takes the Little House out of the city and back to the country where she is happy.  

This book would make a very sweet and basic introduction to seasonal change or the difference between rural, suburban and urban communities for our favorite small fry friends.  It’s an old classic (originally published in 1942) and who can’t respect that?

We were just given #24 for Mini Mimi and can not WAIT to read it with her.  Um, she is SO going to have a word wall in her room as soon as she starts talking.  (Somewhere Mr. Mimi is sighing and shaking his head at me.)  It’s Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin, Jr. and John Archambault.

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom: Anniversary Edition

Can I just say that girlfriend totally hearts this one! I love the colors and simple illustrations for super duper small fries and clearly the whole alphabet connection is amazing. Throw in a cute story line and a fab rhyming scheme and viola! We’ve got a winner!

Oooooo! #23 is one of my absolute faves when I was a kid!  I think it represents a period in my life in which I became more technologically savvy, because I had this one….wait for it….on TAPE!  Ha ha!  No more Fisher Price records for me…I was movin’ on up.  Just like the Jeffersons…. *stares off into space for a moment*

Sorry.  Let’s get on with it.  #23 is Bread and Jam by Frances and Russell Hoban.  Seriously, I listened to this bad boy on repeat…and was fascinated by the whole idea of eggs in that little cup…I know.  I so needed a hobby.  Or more friends.

Anyhow. Frances is a fairly picky eater.  She will only eat (you guessed it!) bread and jam.  Girlfriend is evidently unafraid to carbo-load.  Her parents try to get her to eat eggs, veal cutlets, string beans, you name it, but Frances is all jam all the time.  Her parents, who are clearly total geniuses, pull the old reverse psychology bit on Frances and give her nothing BUT bread and jam while they eat all sorts of other fabulousness.  Soon enough, Frances is all jammed out and concedes to eating spaghetti and meatballs.  (A good choice if you ask me.)  The next day she brings quite the lunch to school, complete with a vase of violets (Um, my mom SO dropped the ball on that one.  I never had fresh flowers in my lunch box. The injustice!), lobster salad (Say wha?), plums, cherries and vanilla pudding.

This book is just fantastic.  I know, I’m jaded, but deal with it.  It’s easy for friends to read on their own, coming in at a level K (according to this book list which I totally dig)…which is perf for smarties in first grade or friends in second grade.  OR, you could totally use this as a read aloud with kindergarten and first grade small fries.  There are great moments to encourage whole class discussions and a super lesson about eating healthy.  (I want to scream when I see my kids drink that blue juice at lunch….ugh!  I can practically feel the sugar crash coming.)

Annnnnnd at #22 is The Monster At The End Of This Book by Jon Stone . Totally intrigued by the title and pumped to check this one out.
The Monster at the End of this Book (Sesame Street) (Big Little Golden Book)

Totally couldn’t find it anywhere! And I loves me some Grover. Bummer.

Happy Friday!!!!!!!! If there was ever time for a cocktail (or seven)!

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  • Love this entry, as a teacher and a mommy. But I'm writing this reply as a mommy…I have a 2 year old and a 5 year old. Three things: Corduroy Rocks. At the end of reading this book to my son, when Corduroy hugs Lisa, he would turn around and hug me. Every time. *sigh*. Next, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom has a great matching Scholastic DVD that animates the story to a catchy tune. A big fave at our house. And finally, I still have my copy (circa mid-1970's) of The Monster at the End of this Book. I heart Grover. Elmo's great and all, but Grover is the original cute innocent little monster.

    September 4, 2010 at 12:37 am
  • The Monster at the End of the Book is totally cute. More of a fun read than anything else…though you could use it to make predictions. Anyway, Groves on each page is all like "Please don't turn that page" cause he knows there's a monster. And you keep turning to read. Which causes Grover to panic, until you get to the end and he finds out HE is the monster. Love it!

    September 4, 2010 at 12:37 am
  • I read The Monster at the End of This Book to my young friends the first week of school. They LOVED it! Now it's the go-to book during choice time.

    Try "Little Golden Books" for The Monster at the End of this Book.

    September 4, 2010 at 12:37 am
  • Oh my! So sad you couldn't find Grover. This was one of my favorite when I was a kid. I'm sum it up for you! Grover doesn't want you to read this book because – ahh! – there's a monster at the end. So he basically does anything and everything to get you to not turn the page, "tie" the pages together, "brick" over the next page. Very funny and silly, like Grover. When you come to the end of the book there is a monster there – little ole Grover! And get this! I just discovered a sequel with Elmo! Oh and I found my copy at wal-mart.

    September 4, 2010 at 12:37 am
  • Read The Monster at the End of This Book here –>

    This was my absolute FAVORITE book when I was learning to read. I loved it, loved it, loved it!!! So glad it's on this list 🙂 This is a fun one to read aloud with the little ones!

    September 4, 2010 at 12:37 am
  • Mimi I am almost positive I have a copy of The Monster at the End of this Book from when I was little sitting on my sons bookshelf.
    I can mail it you if you want?

    September 4, 2010 at 12:37 am
  • The Monster at the End of This Book is SO great – one of my childhood faves! Definitely get a copy of it and check it out – Grover is afraid because he hears there is a monster at the end of the book, and spends the whole time trying to build things to keep you from turning the pages. My dad used to read it in "the Grover voice". It's too cute!

    September 4, 2010 at 8:08 pm
  • This has nothing to do with the children's books…

    Please check out this blog:

    If you don't know of her already, read up. She's awesome. Her latest entry is all about the scandals in standardized testing and how they show unreliable results (as if we didn't know this already).

    September 4, 2010 at 8:08 pm
  • I am so sorry for you! How could you have missed out on The Monster at the End of This Book? 😉
    This is one of my favorite books. It's a fun and just perfect for a read aloud if you have a bit of the drama queen in you. The text lends itself to some drama. I'm not sure it's a literary giant, but it sure is fun!

    September 4, 2010 at 8:08 pm
  • One year we had a group that wanted Chicka Chicka all the time. The teacher made little seasonal things to tape over the letters at the very end. We had shamrocks, Xmas trees, hearts etc. Then it was the Valentine's Tree etc..Someone makes a wonderful stuffed tree with letters to stick on it. Are you going back to work this year?

    September 6, 2010 at 12:54 pm
  • Check out this site:

    for a digital copy of The Monster at the End of This Book. I love this story!

    September 7, 2010 at 12:29 am
  • I think the "Monster at the End of the Book" is the only Golden Book to make the list. Love it!

    September 8, 2010 at 12:33 am
  • The Monster at the End of This Book is one of my faves from childhood. So, I have a tip: Get it in board-book format. It's smaller than the regular print version, but all those little hands will want to pretend how hard it is to turn the page. Sometimes the pages suffer for such theatrical art. All the pages are the same in my two copies, so it's not a shortened version for the board book copy.

    I am stilling digging these book lists and I'm impressed you've been able to keep it up. Thanks!

    September 9, 2010 at 7:17 pm

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