Volume 2, Week 1
Late last spring I stumbled upon a stellar list, 100 Picture Books for Your Summer Reading, put together by blogger and book reviewer Book Nerd Mommy. (She did it again! Check here.) I challenged my kids, and really myself, to read through its entirety, and we did, with only a few substitutions. This summer, I’ve extended the same challenge with one small but significant change… Aspiring authors need to study the market (aka momma needs mentor texts), so we’re going rogue and doing it without a list! Our summer breaks start early around here, the last day of school was May 24. Thankfully, it lasts right at 10 weeks, which makes the math part of this challenge an easy pill to swallow. So, the plan is, 10 different picture books each week for 10 weeks. They won’t all be new books, though most will. We’ll definitely leave room for some from our own shelves and plan to visit a few ‘old favorites’ as well. In the course of the past year, I’ve also found my way to a few new (or at least new to me) blogs that approach the study of picture books from different angles and I’m hoping to incorporate these into our reading.
If you’re reading this and have similar plans for the summer, I’d love to hear from you! I’d love to hear your favorites. I’d love to hear what you learn. Make suggestions! Send recommendations! (Feel free to use the hashtag, too!) This time around, I plan to be a little more specific in my reading list, while also letting my kids pick out books that call out to them from the library shelves. I hope to read more from local authors and I want to read more non-fiction. I intend on engaging with some of the stories and incorporating ‘beyond the book’ activities. But the goal in all of this is really just to read, read, read. Let me (re)introduce you to my counterparts in this daring undertaking:
OC– She’s 8 now and fully submersed in the world of MG (middle grade) chapter books. She agreed to play along with these picture books but is also hoping to spend more time lost in her own age-appropriate novels. Her demeanor is as spunky as her hair is curly. She’s inspired, intelligent and inventive and never meets a stranger (or a book she won’t devour).
MC– He’s 6 years old and as enthusiastic, energetic and eager as ever. He loves funny stories and will laugh about them long after the cover is closed. He’s really grown a lot this past school year and is always excited to put his newest super power to good use. (Reading!) He gets excited by new books and big words that he can manage on his own. He also loves telling stories and has a strong affinity for drawing/creating. I’m eager to see how that guides his choices of picture book favorite.
YC– I don’t have a favorite child but I do have a favorite age (so far.) It happens to be 4, which is the exact age of my youngest child. At 4, it seems like kids are both experts on everything AND experiencing life for the first time (that they can recall.) It’s been a magic age for my older two kids and this third time around is no different. The kid behind the age is different, however! YC has always been the comedic relief of the family, but as he’s grown so has his knack for making others laugh. He’s silly and he loves it. He loves characters who share this trait, as well.
So, without further ado… our first week of our #100PictureBookSummer starts now.
- Whobert Whoover written by Jason Gallaher, illustrated by Jess Pauwels (There might just be a Paper People interview about this book in the near future!)
- Monster Trucks written by Joy Keller, illustrated by Misa Saburi (a fast favorite and another future Paper People interview!)
- LMNO Peas by Keith Baker
- Elephant & Piggie I Really Like Slop! by Mo Willems (MC gets great practice reading with this series, I get the feeling these two characters will be constant companions.)
- Elephant & Piggie Are You Ready to Play Outside? by Mo Willems
- The Legend of Rock Paper Scissors written by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Adam Rex (I cannot even begin to tell you how many epic Rock, Paper, Scissor battles we’ve had around here lately.)
- Not A Box by Antoinette Portis
- Apple Pie ABC by Allison Murray
- Square Cat ABC by Elizabeth Schoonmaker
- What Do You Do with an Idea? written by Kobi Yamanda, illustrated by Mae Besem
- Something Extraordinary by Ben Clanton
Hmm…somehow, I managed to slip an extra book in there. Oh well, I always think ‘an extra, just in case’ is a good idea. It’s been a great first week of summer and these books really kicked things off well. As an added bonus, check out Joy Keller’s blog Picture This: A Blog for Teachers. In a recent post, she ties in a fun math activity using a ten frame and her debut picture book Monster Trucks. I don’t know about your kids, but mine love to play school, especially during the summer. Later, when everyone is awake, I’m going to print off the adorable worksheet associated with the post. Their ‘classroom’ is still set up from yesterday so it’ll be a perfect time to do a few fun math exercises and then hand it off to today’s ‘teacher’. I’m off to work on another great author interview that I’ll share in the coming weeks. I hope your school year wrapped/wraps up well.
Thanks for reading, come back anytime!