Read Aloud to Children from Birth

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Hurrah!  The American Academy of Pediatrics announced that they will be focusing on having pediatricians tell parents to read aloud to their infants from birth.  This marks the first time that this organization which represents 62,000 pediatricians has made an early literacy recommendation. 

Programs like Reach Out and Read offer connections for pediatricians to get books that they can then offer families living in poverty.  Simply reading aloud to children will dramatically increase the number of words children hear before preschool.  Reading aloud to infants is a powerful message to send to all parents, one that is sure to pay dividends in the years to come!

The New York Times has the story here.

Review: Froodle by Antoinette Portis

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Froodle by Antoinette Portis

Everyone knows that cats say “Meow” and dogs bark.  The birds is the neighborhood all sand their specific song too.  The little brown bird sang “Peep” every day, all seasons.  Until one day, the little bird decided that she wanted to sing something else.  Something silly!  The big black crow did not think this was funny at all.  The little brown bird tried to go back to singing just “Peep” again, but she just couldn’t stop the silly words from slipping out.  Soon the silliness was spreading and the red bird started saying things too.  Then Dove proved that there could be silly white birds too.  The only one who would not be silly was the very serious Crow.  But we all know that silliness is very contagious!

Clever, clever, clever.  This book takes a very simple premise of one little bird being silly one day and wanting to do something unique and different, and then shows how one small change can have larger ripple effects on a community.  The tone throughout is pure cheer and laughter.  The words that all of the birds come up with are ridiculous and great fun to read aloud.  Children will enjoy working these and other nonsense words into their day.

The illustrations for the book were done in pencil, charcoal and ink with the color added digitally.  The result is a book with a traditional feel mixed with a modern spin.  The colors are flat and bright, the textures give depth, and the birds themselves pop on the backgrounds.

Silly, funny and a delight to read aloud, this book is pure oobly snoobly fun.  Appropriate for ages 2-4.

Reviewed from library copy.

2014 Cilip Carnegie & Greenaway Medal Winners

The winners of the 2014 Cilip Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals have been announced.

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The medals are the oldest children’s book awards and are voted on by librarians in the UK.  The Carnegie Medal is given to one outstanding book for children or young adults.  This year’s winner is Kevin Brooks for The Bunker Diary.  Brooks, author of ten teen novels, has been shortlisted for the medal three times before.

The Kate Greenaway Medal for excellence in illustration in a book for children was awarded to Jon Klassen for This Is Not My Hat.  Klassen becomes the first Canadian to win the award.  He was nominated for two titles in this year’s short list.