Thursday, January 04, 2007

Favorite books for kindergartners


Big Man and I came up with this list just before xmas and I thought I'd share. If you have a kid, select books for kids, or like to read picture books (they're totally underrated!) these are some good ones. I have a board book list too, I'll probably post that next week.
  • Chickerella by Mary Jane Auch and Herm Auch. Cool art, and at the end the heroine goes into business with the prince!
  • Maxwell’s Mountain by Shari Becker and Nicole E. Wong. Excellent for discussing projects and planning and reaching past your boundaries.
  • The great kapok tree: A tale of the Amazon rain forest by Lynne Cherry
  • Mixed Beasts by Kenyon Cox and Wallace Edwards. Beautiful, witty illustrations, full of little jokes.
  • Ruby Sings the Blues by Niki Daly. Gotta be ready to holler along with Ruby if you're gonna read this one aloud.
  • The Yellow Balloon by Charlotte Desmatons. Fun for all ages. A bottomless source of story and detail, with no words at all!
  • Charlie Cook’s favorite book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. Clever and fun celebration of reading.
  • Gakky Two-Feet by Micky Dolenz. The guy from the Monkees writes a book about pre-humans!
  • The Extinct Files: My Science Project by Wallace Edwards
  • Josias, hold the book by Jennifer Riesmeyer Elvgren and Nicole Tadgell. A little boy in Haiti learns the value of education. Sweet.
  • Ellsworth's Extraordinary Electric Ears and Other Amazing Alphabet Anecdotes by Valorie Fisher. Cool-looking and full of vocabulary-building detail.
  • Eddie's Garden and How to Make Things Grow by Sarah Garland. A really nice gardening story, with good science mixed in.
  • In the woods: Who’s been here? by Lindsay Barrett George. All of the Lindsay Barrett George picture books are so amazing. This one shows you how to draw conclusions from details of your surroundings.
  • The Monster Show: Everything You Never Knew About Monsters by Charise Mericle Harper. Monsters in underpants, heh heh.
  • Prehistoric Actual Size by Steve Jenkins. The best use of Steve Jenkins' collage illustration style I've seen yet.
  • The Worm family by Tony Johnston and Stacy Innerst. Say it loud! We're worms and we're proud!
  • Superhero ABC by Bob McLeod. Faithful to old-style comic book illustration and concept.
  • If you decide to go to the moon by Faith Mcnulty and Steven Kellogg. Facts about space travel and the moon, with an environmental message.
  • Harvey Potter’s balloon farm by Jerdine Nolen. Trippy.
  • Fancy Nancy by Jane O'Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser. Celebrating individuality and the concept of more is more.
  • Captain Raptor and the Moon Mystery by Kevin O’Malley & Patrick O’Brien. Gorgeous paintings and a real page-turner to boot.
  • The world that loved books by Stephen Parlato. Kaleidescopic illustrations, easy-to-grasp concept.
  • Seen Art? by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith. Kid goes to MoMA.
  • Mommy? by Maurice Sendak. Totally indulgent pop-up book. Spin the mummy!
  • The Ravenous Beast by Niamh Sharkey. One of the first books a pre-reader can narrate himself, taking cues from the rhythm of the text and the pictures on the page.
  • Wild About Books by Judy Sierra. What's not to love about a ponytailed librarian in hot pink pants parking her bookmobile at the zoo? The insect haiku is a crackup.
  • Henny Penny by Jane Wattenberg. Shake, rattle, and roll! Use a whole lot of crazy hepcat voices to read this crack-a-lackin' version out loud.
  • Dear Mr. Rosenwald by Carole Boston Weatherford. Did you know that the Sears, Roebuck founder funded hundreds of black schools across the South? I didn't.
  • Flotsam by David Wiesner. Another wordless, mind-expanding book from David Wiesner, maybe his best so far.
  • Don’t let the pigeon drive the bus! by Mo Willems. Great role-reversal for kids - they're the ones saying "No!" and you the reader get to have a tantrum in the middle of the book.
  • Leonardo, the terrible monster by Mo Willems. Leonardo is a terrible monster because he's bad at it. Sweet without being gross.
  • Nothing to do by Douglas Wood and Wendy Halperin. Celebrating the kind of things kids get up to when their minds are allowed to wander.
  • Ruby’s Wish by Shirin Yim and Sophie Blackall. Inspiring true story about a Chinese girl who wants more than her traditional role dictates.