Two Brand New Picture Books About Mental Health

Did you ever wake up to a bad day? Your snooze alarm screams that you are late, and you can’t figure out what to wear. Your food is bland and everyone around you is grumpy. It’s raining, school is boring, and it feels like the world is just closing in on you. How do you beat the funk? Or imagine waking up content in your bed every day, never wanting to leave. Safe and warm, you love your humble abode filled with good books and solitary activities. Although your friends have great parties and ice-skating adventures planned, you might catch the flu. Your hot chocolate might be too hot. These anxiety-prevalent and down and out scenarios greet readers in two new picture books about mental health, Rosie’s Glasses and Hector’s Favorite Place. Both titles address mental health and how to overcome scary and sad obstacles through courage and by approaching…

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Brand New Zoo Picture Book With A Lovable Sloth

I just read a tweet where a book blogger joked about how, ‘No, the picture book stack that she carried around was not for small children.’ Sometimes I feel the same way at the library or bookstore when I dart childless into the teen and children’s room. Nope, I am not a creeper as the security guard who once followed me in probably thought. I just want to read all of the books. I am especially excitable when I see colored pencil and water colored animals. I am a sucker for cutesy critters with big eyes. What can I say? That is why when I found Sloth at the Zoom by Helaine Becker—a new zoo picture book—I had to request the title on NetGalley. Sloth and I could seriously be besties as she loves to live the relaxed life full of sunset watching, friends, and of course, food. A Book…

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Books About Big and Small: Just The Right Size Book Review

Are you looking for brand new children’s books about big and small?  Bonnie Grubman’s Just The Right Size is the perfect 2018 animal picture book.  With characters that you just want to cuddle right off of the pages, learn Goldilocks-style what is big enough, small enough, and just right. Book Review Of Just The Right Size by Bonnie Grubman Illustrated with beautiful pastel watercolors and colored-pencils, Diederen captures the playfulness of this brand new concept book. Beginning with a ladybug that is just small enough to land on a tree branch, young readers learn that while a giraffe cannot accomplish a similar feat, a giraffe can naturally reach the treetops. Kittens sleep in flowerbeds as elephants cover their young from the rain. Mice can hide anywhere while giant moose are the perfect size to romp in the snow. Dolphins may not be able to gently glide through the seaweed like a…

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Kids’ Books About Sharing: Stop Being a HedgeHOG, Eugene!

If you are looking for sweet and colorful kids’ books about sharing, Ashlyn Anstee’s Hedgehog will truly hog the spotlight. What could be more adorable than a grumpy, most-likely only child hedgehog? Before I get trolled, I suggest this character description lovingly and half-jokingly as an only child myself.   A Story About A Hedge Hog (Spelled Correctly, I Promise)   With winter fast approaching, the backyard garden animals are hustling to find indoor homes. Our protagonist, Eugene the Hedgehog, is fortunately safe and warm in the garden hedges. Below him and to his dismay, grasshopper also has secured digs. Librarian confession here: I Goggled “what is the habitat of a hedgehog.” I care about accurate representation. Boo my English and History double major. Hedgehogs do live in the hedges, obviously. With Eugene nestled in for the season with his apple pie on the stove and cute “Home is where…

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Best Children’s Picturebooks That You Can’t Live Without

From carrots that are terrified of being devoured by fluffy bunnies to a famished owl looking for a treat, there are just some children’s picturebooks that you can’t live without. These are the types of stories that parents, teachers, and librarians can ham up for kids while trying oh so hard to wear a game face.  The best children’s picturebooks that I continue to love, perfect for the spooky fall, Halloween, or any season:     How did I find these titles? A few years back, when I working on my MLIS, I facilitated school-age storytime for k-5th graders at a public library. Because of the diverse age of the children served, I always looked for engaging books meant for everyone. In my system, we usually transformed children’s books into full-blown theatrical skits, puppets and all. After five recent years in the libraries, these are my top three favorite picturebooks:…

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Review: Grains of Sand by Sibylle Delaroix

Grains of Sand by Sibylle Delaroix is a story that makes readers imagine coming home from a beach vacation as a young child, filled with longing for sun-packed days and endless sandcastles. Away from the water, our wistful protagonists—an adorable brother and sister—are clearly disappointed that the trip has ended.  These two are craving more of their sandy playtime. With minds still reeling with gold and blue beach hues, our little duo decides to plant their leftover sand. Watering these unique sand seeds with their imagination, the children watch and skip along as umbrellas, pinwheels, and ice cream grow. Eventually calm and sated, they head to bed. Although ideas like waves of laughter painted with ocean surf might be more abstract to younger children, Grains of Sand is a beautifully written and illustrated book that evokes nostalgia in all ages—including myself. The sweet, simple concept of bringing home the beach…

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