I’ve been a huge fan of children’s books since I was young. I started holding on to my books as a child, started collecting my favorite titles as a young adult and haven’t stopped yet. There is nothing like a great picture book.
I write about a lot of picture books from the perspective of my newest role as a children’s librarian at a public pre-k through middle school in Oakland, CA. For those of you reading my reviews as parents, grandparents or friends buying books for children, it’s important to note that reading to children one on one gives caregivers the chance to explain concepts and gauge comprehension. One on one, children can absorb concepts at a much higher level.
Reading aloud to large groups of students is challenging. Read aloud books need to be able to keep students engaged despite distractions created by folks walking in and out of the library, students wiggling and so on. A read aloud book also needs to be satisfying to students at all different levels within a class. Read aloud books also sometimes, optimally, allow for interaction with students.
I only write about picture books that have really worked in a group setting. There are incredible books that I read to my son that did not work at all with my students. My hope is that if you’re buying books for your own or a friend’s children or grandchildren, that you’ll know that these books made a big group of children laugh, look thoughtful and/or clap and that you can probably read a book that I’ve written about at the 1st grade level to a preschooler or a 3rd grade book for a 2nd grader.
I hope that you’ll enjoy that books I’m recommending and that you’ll pass along this blog to other friends who might also be looking for books for kids. www.kidslitcorner.com
All the best,