emerging readers

Emerging Readers – March

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Snowmen at Night by Caralyn Buehner

We haven’t had much snow this winter in Minnesota, so we need a book about snowmen. This story begins when a small child notices a snowman outside who changed overnight. It was drooping on one side, it’s hat had slipped, “He looked a fright.” What happened to the snowman overnight? Buchner tells a wonderful story, in short rhyming sentences, about the fun time the snowman had with other snowmen after the child and the world went to sleep.

Buchner shows all the winter activities that children love through delightful illustrations. The snowmen gather for skating, snowball fights, hot chocolate in the park, and they go sledding down a fabulous hill. They even make snowmen angels in the snow in a double page spread that is sure to bring smiles and giggles.

The illustrations show a lot of emotion which can be fun to notice and talk about. Would you be really happy or maybe a little scared going down a BIG snow hill on a toboggan?

As a bonus treat, the author reminds us that there are three hidden shapes (a rabbit, a cat and a Santa face) in the illustrations. It is a treasure hunt to look for them together.

emerging readers

Spot’s Toys Soft Book by Eric Hill

This book is the kind of baby book that can be very soothing as well as visually engaging. The book is composed of soft fabric pages some of which have crinkle paper inside. Crinkle paper makes a crackling sound when touched. This sound can have a very soothing effect for some kids. It may be that it is a compelling distraction, and it is not clear that it works for all infants, but it is a wonderful addition to strategies for soothing a crying baby.

This particular book is also a good pick as it has bright colors and large singular images on each page that have different textures. It also has limited, larger text on each page. Finally, it has plastic corners on the front corners for teething and plastic rings for grabbing.

Fun with reading

  • Talk about how to build a snowman – The first page shows a boy rolling two big snow balls; what are they for? What do the illustrations show for their noses, eyes and mouths?
  • Talk about the emotion on their faces – See if your child can show that emotion on his/her face.
  • Act out new words like drooping.- At the beginning and end the snowman is shown with his shoulder drooping. Also, the snowmen are described as tuckered out. It’s fun and helps vocabulary development to act out these words.
  • Crinkle paper can be purchased at some local gift stores that have baby/child sections as a single piece covered in colorful soft fabric. The individual sheets are great to keep in diaper bags etc.
  • Use the simple language and bright colors to engage your child in labeling and learning new words. Let them name each color, offer up other things that are “red,” etc.

Author: JeanneLovesBooks

Jeanne is a retired youth services librarian and the former Supervisor of Hennepin County’s Readmobile Program. The Readmobile, which is also retired, was like a Bookmobile, but dedicated to young children, which developed and provided early literacy enriched visits to Head Start Programs, Early Childhood Learning Centers, Child Care Providers and Family, Friend and Neighbor Providers. Jeanne shares literacy info about books for infants through preschoolers in her “Jeanne Loves Books” column once a month. She welcomes your feedback and suggestions for books to highlight.

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