Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Xander's Panda Party by Linda Sue Park and Illustrated by Matt Phelan


Zander's Panda Party by Linda Sue Park 

and Illustrated by Matt Phelan

Xander Panda is planning a party, 
a dandy panda party!
But he has to change the plans
and send more and more invitations
as the guest list grows and grow,
Xander is frantic.
His party won't stay planned!
But with the help
Xander finally gives the perfect party
that everyone in the zoo
will remember forever.


As someone who loves panda bears, I just couldn't put this book down!

This is a great book for teaching young children about inclusion!

Xander plans a party and begins by inviting bears... He invites more and more animals and finally at the end of the book, invites... 

Well, you will have to read the book to find out how it ends.

This excellent, friendly book will make for a great story time and even bed time story. I loved this book. I love the pictures, colors, and text. This book was creatively done! I loved the design of the invitations. It was such a fun read!

I recommend this book for every daycare, family, school, and public library.

Happy reading....... 

Until the next time.........................

A children's book a day, keeps the scary monster away!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Phil Saw His Shadow... Did He Read These Books?

HAPPY GROUND HOG DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Phil saw his shadow yesterday and so we are having 6 more weeks of winter...

Here are two Ground Hog Day books that just might cheer you up.

Gretchen Groundhog, It's Your Day! 
by Abby Levine and Illustrations by Nancy Cote


Groundhog Day is almost here. This year it's Gretchen's turn to look for her shadow because Great-Uncle Gus is too old. But Gretchen is shy; she says she cannot Go Out before the waiting crowd.
What are the people of Piccadilly to do? How will they know what the weather will be? The plead with Gretchen, knock on her burrow door, and send her e-mail messages.
Can Gretchen gather her courage so folks will know when spring is 

This is a lovely story about Ground Hog Day and overcoming one's fears by just "going for it!" The story and pictures were quite a delight to behold. I would recommend this book for story time, home, school, and public libraries to teach children about Ground Hog Day. Write and let us know if you have read this book and how you liked it.

And now for the second Ground Hog Day book!

The Secrets of the First One Up 
by Iris Hiskey Arno and Illustrated by Renee Graef

When Lila, a young groundhog, objects to going to sleep for the winter, Uncle Wilbur tells her to rest so that she can try to be the first one to wake up in the spring and discover a big secret. She is indeed the first groundhog to awaken and quickly runs up the tunnel and outdoors, where she is greeted by all of the animals that do not hibernate and learns from them how important her shadow is.

I absolutely adore the soft warm pastel colors of this lovely book. I just wanted to cuddle all of the animals in this story. The picture and text just draw you in. The animals are so warm and fuzzy::) You just want to hibernate with Lila's family and then join her with the "above ground... none hibernating animals" when she wakes up and is the first groundhog to go out doors...

"Lila hurried up the tunnel toward the light. Bursting out into the open air, she found herself surrounded by those who stay awake all winter--raccoons, cardinals, chickadees, badgers, and porcupine."

All of the animals are smiling, laughing, and very happy. Just looking at their happy smiling faces, will make you smile and giggle. This is a VERY happy, friendly book.  You just want to dance with Lila and her new found friends...

This would make for a nice book for story time or a lesson on groundhogs or animals that hibernate!

As an added gem, there is an Author's Note at the end of the book that gives the historical basis for Groundhog day!

This book can also be used as an example of a well designed and beautifully illustrated children's book. I love the drawings, colors, and text.

This book is a keeper! I can't wait to order my copy and read it during story time and to my growing family of great nieces and nephews..::))

I recommend this for every home library, public library, day care, and elementary school library. You and your young students won't be disappointed.

This is a nice book to read when it's snowing outside and you are in your pajamas, slippers, and a sipping a nice cup of hot cocoa.


Until the next time.......................................

Happy Reading..........................................................

A  children's book a day, keeps the scary monster away...........................................

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Black History Month Resources


Children's Book Recommendations 

Here are some resources that were provided by the Florida Department of Education. They have compiled a list of Black History Month children's books that I have included below.

Here is the link to the entire web site:


 Here is the list of Black History Book Recommendations for Grades PreK-3
  • I Dream of Trains, by Johnson, Angela
  • The Moon Over Star, by Aston, Dianna Hutts
  • Let It Shine, by Bryan, Ashley
  • Before John Was a Jazz Giant, by Weatherford, Carole Boston
  • I’ve Seen the Promised Land: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., by Myers, Walter Dean
  • Papa’s Mark, by Lavert, Gwendolyn
  • In the Land of Words: New and Selected Poems, by Gilchrist, Jan Spivey
  • Almost to Freedom, by Nelson, Vaunda Micheaux
  • Thunder Rose, by Nolen, Jerdine
  • Visiting Langston, by Collier, Bryan
  • Freedom River, by Rappaport, Doreen
  • In Daddy’s Arms I am Tall: African Americans Celebrating Fathers, by Schroeder, Alan
  • Ashley Bryan’s ABC of African American Poetry, by Bryan, Ashley
  • Minty: A Story of Young Harriet Tubman, by Schroeder, Alan
  • Running the Road to ABC, by Lauture, Denize
  • Neeny Coming, Neeny Going, by English, Karen
  • Little Eight John, by Wahl, Jan
  • All Night, all Day: A Child’s First Book of African American Spirituals, by Bryan, Ashley
  • When I Am Old With You, by Johnson, Angela
  • The Patchwork Quilt, by Flournoy, Valerie
  • Bright Eyes, Brown Skin, by Hudson, Cheryl & Ford, Bernette
  • Something Beautiful, by Wyeth, Sharon
  • The Quilt, by Jonas, Ann
  • Bill Pickett: Rodeo-Ridin Cowboy, by Pinkney, Andrea & Pinkney, Brian
  • Drylongso, by Hamilton, Virginia
  • I Am Rosa Parks, by Parks, Rosa Parks & Haskins, James
  • Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., by Rappaport, Doreen
  • Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt, by Hopkinson, Deborah
  • The Dream Keeper and Other Poems, by Hughes, Langston & Pinkney, Brian
  • The Palm of My Heart: Poetry by African American Children, by Christie, Gregorie
  • The Invisible Hunters: A Legend from the Miskito Indians of Nicaragua, by Rohmer, Harriet et al
  • Africa Dream, by Greenfield, Eloise
  • Mary McLeod Bethune, by Greenfield, Eloise
  • Ray Charles, by Mathis, Sharon Bell
  • Jazzy Miz Mozetta, by Roberts, Brenda C.
  • Family Plays Music, by Cox, Judy
  • The Moon Ring, by DuBurke, Randy
  • Freedom Summer, by Wiles, Deb
  • The Piano Man, by Chocolate, Debbie
  • Porch Lies: Tales of Slicksters, Tricksters, and Other Wily Characters, by McKissack, Patricia C. illustrated by Carrilho, Andre
  • Beautiful Blackbird, by Bryan, Ashley
  • Before There Was Mozart: The Story of Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint-George, by Cline-Ransome, Lesa
  • Moses, by Weatherford, Carole
  • My Brother Martin, by Farris, Christine King
  • We are the Ship: The Story of Negro League Baseball, by Nelson, Kadir
  • Rosa, by Giovanni, Nickki
  • Aunt Harriet's Underground Railroad in the Sky, by Ringgold, Faith
  • Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves - Deputy U.S. Marshal, by Nelson, Vaunda Micheaux
  • My People, by Hughes, Langston
  • Molly Bannaky, by Soentpiet, Chris K. and McGill, Alice
  • Dear Benjamin Banneker, by Pinkney, Andrea Davis and Pinkney, Brian
  • Nelson Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, by van Wyk, Chris and Bouma, Paddy
  • Wilma Unlimited: How Wilma Rudolph Became the World's Fastest Woman, by Krull, Kathleen and Diaz, David
  • What Color Is My World?: The Lost History of African-American Inventors, by Abdul-Jabbar, Kareem, Obstfeld, Raymond, and Boos, Ben
  • Sit-In: How Four Friends Stood Up by Sitting Down, by Pinkney, Andrea Davis and Pinkney, Brian

 Here is the list of Black History Book Recommendations for Grades 4-5

  • Romare Bearden: Collage of Memories, by Greenberg, Jan
  • Against All Odds: Artist Dean Mitchell's Story, by James, Betty R.
  • Talkin' About Bessie: The Story of Aviator Elizabeth Coleman, by Grimes, Nikki
  • Only Passing Through: The Story of Sojouner Truth, by Rockwell, Anne
  • I Have Heard of a Land, by Thomas, Joyce Carol
  • Duke Ellington: The Piano Prince and His Orchestra, by Pinkney, Andrea Davis
  • The Hunterman and the Crocodile, by Diakitè, Baba Waguè
  • The Singing Man, by Medearis, by Shelf, Angela
  • Meet Danitra Brown, by Grimes, Nikki
  • Soul Looks Back in Wonder, by Fogelman, Phyllis
  • The Origin of Life on Earth: An African Creation Myth, by Anderson, David A.
  • Night on the Neighborhood Street, by Greenfield, Eloise
  • The Road to Memphis, by Taylor, Mildred
  • Aida, by Price, Leontyne
  • Nathaniel Talking, by Greenfield, Eloise
  • Mirandy and Brother Wind, by McKissack, Patricia
  • Under the Sunday Tree, by Greenfield, Eloise
  • Storm in the Night, by Stolz, Mary
  • Maritcha, by Bolden, Tonya
  • Ellington Was Not a Street, by Shange, Ntozake & Nelson, Kadir
  • The Bat Boy and His Violin, by Curtis, Gavin
  • The Great Migration: An American Story, by Lawrence, Jacob
  • Harlem, by Myers, Walter Dean
  • Circle of Gold, by Boyd, Candy Dawson
  • A Little Love, by Hamilton, Virginia
  • The Strange New Feeling, by Lester, Julius
  • Rainbow Jordan, by Childress, Alice
  • Skates of Uncle Richard, by Fenner, Carol
  • Something on My Mind, by Grimes, Nikki
  • Brothers in Hope: The Story of the Lost Boys of Sudan, by Christie, R. Gregory
  • Fly High!: The Story of Bessie Coleman, by Borden, Louise & Kroeger, Mary Kay
  • Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African Americans, by Nelson, Kadir
  • Michelle, by Hopkinson, Deborah
  • Portraits of African-American Heroes, by Bolden, Tonya and Pitcairn, Ansel
  • Through My Eyes, by Bridges, Ruby
  • The Kidnapped Prince: The Life of Olaudah Equiano, by Cameron, Ann
  • Buxton: A Black Utopia in the Heartland, by Schwieder, Dorothy, Hraba, Joseph, and Schwieder, Elmer

 Here is the list of Black History Book Recommendations for Grades 6-8
  • The Legend of Buddy Bush, by Moses, Sheila P.
  • Days of Tears: A Novel in Dialogue, by Lester, Julius
  • Maritcha: A Nineteenth-Century American Girl, by Bolden, Tonya
  • Dark Sons, by Grimes, Nikki
  • The Road to Paris, by Grimes, Nikki
  • Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story, by Ben Carson
  • Days of Jubilee: The End of Slavery in the United States, by McKissack, Patricia C. and Frederick L.
  • Locomotion, by Woodson, Jacqueline
  • The Battle of Jericho, by Draper, Sharon
  • The Red Rose Box, by Woods, Brenda
  • The Land, by Taylor, Mildred
  • Miracle's Boys, by Woodson, Jacqueline
  • Let It Shine! Stories of Black Women Freedom Fighters, by Francie, Andrea Davis Pinkney, English, Karen
  • Black Hands, White Sails: The Story of African American Whalers, by McKissack, Patricia C. & Frederick L.
  • Now is Your Time: The African American Struggle for Freedom, by Myers, Walter Dean
  • The Words of Martin Luther King, Jr., by Coretta Scott King
  • Forged by Fire, by Draper, Sharon M.
  • Breaking Ground, Breaking Silence: The Story of New York's African Burial Ground, by Hansen, Joyce and McGowan, Gary
  • I See the Rhythm, by Igus, Toyomi
  • The Other Side: Shorter Poems, by Johnson, Angela
  • Toning the Sweep, by Johnson, Angela
  • Rebels Against Slavery: American Slave Revolts, by McKissack, Patricia C. and Frederick L.
  • Soujourner Truth: Ain't I a Woman?, by McKissack, Patricia C. and Frederick L.
  • Justin and the Best Biscuits in the World, by Walter, Mildred Pitts
  • Let the Circle Be Unbroken, by Taylor, Mildred D.
  • Childtimes: A Three-Generation Memoir, by Greenfield, Eloise and Little, Lessie Jones
  • Andrew Young: Young Man With a Mission, by Haskins, James
  • The Way a Door Closes, by Smith, Hope Anita
  • The Skin I'm In, by Flake, Sharon
  • Another Way to Dance, by Southgate, Martha
  • Elijah of Buxton, by Curtis, Christopher Paul
  • Twelve Rounds to Glory: The Story of Muhammad Ali, by Smith Jr., Charles R.
  • Keeping the Night Watch, by Smith, Hope Anita
  • Maizon at Blue Hill, by Woodson, Jacqueline
  • My People, by Hughes, Langston, illustrated by Charles R. Smith, Jr.
  • 1001 Things People Should Know about African American History, by Steward, Jeffrey C.
  • To Be a Slave, by Lester, Julius
  • Chains, by Anderson, Laurie Halse
  • A Friendship for Today, by McKissack, Patricia C.
  • Never Forgotten, by McKissack, Patricia
  • Nightjohn, by Paulsen, Gary
  • Freedom Walkers: The Story of the Montgomery Bus Boycott, by Freedman, Russell
  • The Watsons Go to Birmingham, by Curtis, Christopher Paul
  • Numbering all the Bones, by Rinaldi, Ann
  • Powerful Words, by Hudson, Wade


 Here is the list of Black History Book Recommendations for Grades 9-12

  • Copper Sun, by Draper, Sharon
  • The Magnificent Twelve: Florida's Black Junior Colleges, by Smith, Ph.D., Walter L.
  • Fortune's Bones: The Manumission Requiem, by Nelson, Marilyn
  • Carver: A Life in Poems, by Nelson, Marilyn
  • Malcolm X: By Any Means Necessary, by Myers, Walter Dean
  • Mississippi Challenge, by Walter, Mildred Pitts
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Freedom Movement, by Patters, Lillie
  • We Beat the Street: How a Friendship Led to Success, by Davis, Sampson, Jenkins, George, Hunt, Rameck and Draper, Sharon
  • Fallen Angels, by Myers, Walter Dean
  • Anthony Burns: The Defeat and Triumph of a Fugitive Slave, by Hamilton, Virginia
  • Trouble's Child, by Walter, Mildred Pitts
  • The Magical Adventures of Pretty Pearl, by Hamilton, Virginia
  • Lena Horne, by Haskins, James
  • The Middle Passage: White Ships Black Cargo, by Feelings, Tom
  • This Life, by Poitier, Sidney
  • Don't Explain: A Song of Billie Holiday, by De Veaux, Alexis
  • The Young Landlords, by Myers, Walter Dean
  • James Van Der Zee: The Picture Takin' Man, by Haskins, James
  • Let the Lion Eat Straw, by Southerland, Ellease
  • Cornrows, by Yarborough, Camille
  • Benjamin Banneker, by Patterson, Lillie
  • Barbara Jordan, by Haskins, James
  • Darkness Before Dawn, by Draper, Sharon
  • Coretta Scott King, by Patterson, Lillie
  • I Have a Dream, by King, Martin Luther, Jr.
  • Portia: The Life of Portia Washington Pittman, the Daughter of Booker T. Washington, by Stewart, Ruth Ann
  • The Legend of Africana, by Robinson, Dorothy
  • I Never Had It Made: the Autobiography of Jackie Robinson, as told, by Duckett, Alfred
  • My Chill Wind, by McDonald, Janet
  • Lou in the Limelight, by Hunter, Kristin
  • Movin' Up, by Gordy, Berry
  • Marvin and Tige, by Glass, Frankcina
  • Black Troubador: Langston Hughes, by Rollins, Charlemae
  • Martin Luther King, Jr.: Man of Peace, by Patterson, Lillie
  • Monster, by Myers, Walter Dean
  • The First Part Last, by Johnson, Angela
  • Just Another Hero, by Draper, Sharon M.
  • Remember: The Journey to School Integration, by Morrison, Toni
  • Becoming Billie Holiday, by Weatherford, Carole Boston
  • A Wreath For Emmett Till, by Nelson, Marilyn
  • The Freedom Business, by Nelson, Marilyn
  • Street Love, by Myers, Walter Dean
  • Harlem Hustle, by McDonald, Janet
  • The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing - Traitor to the Nation, by Anderson, M. T.
  • Mare's War, by Davis, Tanita S.
  • The Negro Speaks of Rivers, by Hughes, Langston and Lewis, E. B.
  • Giants: The Parallel lives of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln, by Stauffer, John
  • Autobiography of My Dead Brother, by Myers, Walter Dean
  • The Pact: Three Young Men Make a Promise and Fulfill a Dream, by Davis, Sampson, Jenkins, George, Hunt, Rameck, with Page, Lisa Frazier
  • Black, Blue, and Gray: African Americans in the Civil War, Haskins, Jim
  • Black Boy, Wright, Richard
  • A Raisin in the Sun, Hansberry, Lorraine
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God, Hurston, Zora Neale
  • Mining for Freedom: Black History Meets the California Gold Rush, Roberts, Sylvia Alden
 Let us know if you have read any of these books and if you have any recommendations for other books for Black History month.....

Happy Reading!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Until the next time!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A Children's book a day, keeps the scary monster away!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!