Pre-K Read aloud

All posts in the Pre-K Read aloud category

How to Hide a Lion, Helen Stephens

Published February 5, 2015 by Dagmar

I love it when I find a great book for my preschool and TK students.  How to Hide a Lion is a sweet book with endearing illustrations.

how-to-hide-a-lionLion comes to town looking for a hat.  Everyone is scared of him, so he runs away.  He ends up in the backyard of a strong and very brave girl named Iris.  Iris finds Lion in  her playhouse.  Lion is much too big to hide in her playhouse.  So, Iris takes him inside her house.  First, she grooms him and puts a bandage on his hurt paw.  Then, she tries to hide him.  Iris succeeds for a while, but while reading a story to Lion, he falls fast asleep.  It happens that lions are very hard to wake up.  Lions that are hard to wake up are unable to hide quickly.  Needless to say, disaster strikes.  Iris’ mom discovers Lion, screams, and Lion is on the run again.  He decides to hide in plain site, sitting still, between two statues next to the Town Hall.  Unfortunately for two crooks, and fortunately for Iris’ town, Lion’s hiding place is the perfect place to catch crooks leaving the Town Hall with the mayor’s candlesticks.  The towns people, no longer scared of Lion, honor him and present him with a …hat.  Of course.

I was charmed by this book as were my students.  Please enjoy.

Pete the Cat and His Magic Sunglasses, by Kimberly and James Dean

Published December 22, 2014 by Dagmar

Pete the Cat is one very cool dude.  He is a blue cat, and in this book, he is a blue cat with some “cool, blue, magic sunglasses”.  Wait and see what magic they can do.

Pete the CatPete is blue, and not just in color.  He’s a blue cat who is feeling blue.  Pete has “the blue cat blues”.  Walking down the street, he runs into Grumpy Toad, a toad that was never happy.  Bummer…not the kind of guy you want to run into when you’re feeling blue, yourself.  Today, though, Grumpy Toad has a smile on his face.  Why?  Grumpy Toad has a pair of “cool, blue, magic sunglasses,” that help him “see things in a whole new way.”  He gives the glasses to Pete.  When Pete puts on the glasses, all of a sudden he sees that, “The birds are singing. The sky is bright.  The sun is shining. I’m feeling ALRIGHT!”  Pete takes his trusty skateboard and continues on his way in a sunnier mood.

Pete runs into Squirrel, Turtle and Alligator.  All of them are having terrible days until Pete shares his cool, blue, magic sunglasses with them.  Once they put on the magic sunglasses, they see what Pete saw and are feeling ALRIGHT!”  Pete keeps cruising on his skateboard when ACK! …he falls off his skateboard and the cool sunglasses crack.  Luckily, a wise old owl is nearby and tells Pete that he actually doesn’t need those sunglasses.  He just needs to remember to “look for the good in every day.”

What a cool way to talk about times when you’re feeling grumpy, angry, frustrated or just plain blue.  I loved it; my kids loved it, and we’re feeling ALRIGHT!  So, be cool, and read this great book, too.

Benjamin and Bumper to the Rescue, by Molly Coxe

Published October 21, 2014 by Dagmar

Many thanks to Amélie of Amélie’s Bookshelf for recommending this terrific book.  It provided a great opportunity to talk to my kindergarten students about authors and illustrators and whether illustrators always had to draw or paint the pictures to a book.  In this case, Olivier Toppin has taken photographs of stuffed animals with real props in order to illustrate the book.

Benjamin and BusterAs I read this to my kindergarteners, they were held in great suspense, some said they were even scared as we read it.  Trust me, this is a very gentle book with a kindergarten-sized villain and two really good guys, named Benjamin and Bumper.

When Benjamin’s mom goes off to do errands and doesn’t return, Benjamin and Bumper set out to find her.  Luckily, they are very practical animals, packing lots of tools that they might need for their search and rescue mission, including: their scooter, ropes, ladders, a sewing kit, a fishing pool and some tools.  When they discover that Mrs. Middlemouse has been captured by the terrible Sir Pouncelot, they’ll need all these various things in order to save her from becoming an ingredient in one of his dinner casseroles.

Will Benjamin and Bumper be able to save Benjamin’s mom?  Will Sir Pouncelot learn a lesson?  Tune in to this, the first of the Benjamin and Bumper Adventure series, to find out!

Do You Know Which Ones Will Grow? by Susan Shea

Published October 20, 2014 by Dagmar

doyouknowwhichHere’s a great book that worked well with my pre-k through K students.  They really enjoyed it. Susan Shea cleverly takes readers from things that are organic and grow and things that won’t grow with rhyming text and unfolding pages.

“If a duckling grows and becomes a duck, can a car grow and become (unfold the page) a truck?”  “If an owlet grows and becomes an owl, can a washcloth grow and become (unfold) a towel?”

This is lots of fun to read to young students.   When they see what (inorganic thing) the author thinks might grow, they laugh and yell (in their best library voices), “NO!”

Have fun with this one!  Many thanks to my friend, Leona, a story teller at our school, for this wonderful recommendation!

In November, by Cynthia Rylant

Published October 17, 2014 by Dagmar

In NovemberThis is a very peaceful book about the changing seasons and the coming of winter.  Beautiful illustrations by Jill Kastner are a great accompaniment to Cynthia Rylant’s words.

“In November, the earth is growing quiet.  It is making its bed, a winter bed for flowers and small creatures.”  “In November, some birds move away and some birds stay.”  “In November, the smell of food is different.  It is an orange smell.  A squash and a pumpkin smell.”

The story talks about the animals, birds, trees and finally ends with a family joining in a special meal, presumably Thanksgiving.  This is a wonderful book to share with your younger students as Thanksgiving approaches.

The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything, by Linda Williams

Published October 17, 2014 by Dagmar

The Little Old LadyHere’s a fun read for your younger Halloween fans.  This book is a perennial favorite at my school.  I  usually read it with kindergarten, pre-k and 1st grade students around Halloween and love to have them join in with me as I read.

There once was a little old lady who wasn’t afraid of anything.  As she walks in the woods, she is followed, first by shoes that go CLOMP, CLOMP.  Then, she is followed by pants that go WIGGLE WIGGLE, a shirt that goes SHAKE SHAKE.  Each time, she turns and says “Get out of my way, I’m not afraid of you!”.  When she gets home, who should knock on the door, but the shoes, pants, shirt and a pumpkin head all trying to scare her.  When she says she’s not afraid, the pumpkin head looks so sad that she comes up with a great way for him to scare someone. Read the book to find out how!

Happy Halloween!

 

Fall Leaves Fall, by Zoe Hall

Published August 26, 2014 by Dagmar

Here is a great, simple book about fall for young students.  I like to read this with my pre-k and K students.  The book begins with leaves in summer and then moves to how we know fall leaves fallfall is here…leaves changing color and falling from trees.  The simple illustrations show children catching falling leaves, collecting different leaves and comparing them, raking leaves and finally jumping in leaves!   The children then drink warm cider and make pictures using the leaves they’ve collected.

My pre-k students really enjoyed this book.

Tippy-Toe Chick, Go!, by George Shannon

Published May 4, 2014 by Dagmar

This is one of my favorite books to read to my Pre-k – Kindergarten students.  People constantly underestimate young children’s abilities, and in this case?  Big chickens underestimate chicks, until they fiTippyToend out just how smart a little chick can be.

Every morning, Hen takes her three chicks, Big Chick, Middle Chick and Little Chick to go eat sweet itty-bitty beans and potato bugs.  Until one day, when a dog, tied up near the garden, barks at them as they head to the garden.  Hen decides they better go back home and eat chicken feed, but the chicks don’t want chicken feed. Big Chick tries to reason with the big dog.  The dog barks, and Big Chick runs under his mother’s wing.  The same happens with Middle Chick.  Then, Little Chick, the hero of our story, realizes that if he makes the dog run around the tree, the dog will tie himself up.  So, Little Chick runs, tippy-toe, tippy-toe, around the tree with the big dog chasing him until the dog ties himself up.  Little Chick leads his family past the dog to the garden for sweet itty-bitty beans and potato bugs.

A great, fun  read for all your small, clever chicks.

 

Snowmen at Night, by Caralyn Buehner

Published February 1, 2014 by Dagmar

snowmen at nightWhen I moved from New York State to California 30 years ago, I knew that I would give up the seasons and wouldn’t see snow day to day in winter.  Honestly, the latter didn’t bother so much after years of slipping on ice and digging out driveways.

Many of my students rarely, if ever, have the chance to see and play in the snow.  They know that it’s cold in winter, that some trees lose their leaves, that bears hibernate and that children make snowmen and snow angels in the snow.  I love to share winter memories from my childhood in upstate New York, building snow forts with my big brother, making snowmen and throwing snowballs.

Whether your children or students live in a climate where they know winter well, or whether they only can wonder what it’s like, Snowmen at Night is a great book for a winter read aloud.  The rhyming text is easy to read and the pictures by Mark Buehner are so engaging.

What do snowmen do at night? Apparently quite a lot.  “One wintry day I made a snowman, very round and tall.  The next day when I saw him, he was not the same at all!  His hat had slipped, his arms drooped down, he really looked a fright  — it made me start to wonder: What do snowmen do at night?”

This is a fun book about the secret life of snowmen that delighted my kindergartners.  I hope you have fun with it, too.

Red Sled, by Lita Judge

Published January 12, 2014 by Dagmar

red sledI’m a huge fan of wordless books for kids.  This genre has really grown.  It includes books for young students, like one of my favorites, A Ball for Daisy, by Chris Raschka, and complex and beautiful wordless books like The Arrival, by Shaun Tan, meant for middle schoolers.

Younger students and particularly students who aren’t reading yet get such a feeling of confidence when they can read a story on their own.  In the case of my library, students sit quietly and watch the story unfold as I turn the pages for them.  Sometimes I have them tell me the story that they just “read”.  This time, we just closed the book and smiled.

The Red Sled is not a completely wordless book.  The only words that appear are onamatopoeias. The book opens with a red sled sitting outside a house in the snow.  A bear wanders by and notices the sled.  He decides to take it for a ride, and what a wild ride it is!  Soon, a rabbit joins him, then a moose, then two raccoons, an opposum, a porcupine and a mouse.  The illustrations are wonderful, particularly the animals expressions as they tumble down the hill on the red sled. My students were so quiet as they read the book, then, they started smiling and soon they were laughing out loud.  After the animals finish their sled ride, the bear replaces the sled at the door of the small house.  The child who owns the sled walks out the next day, picks up his sled and notices bear tracks.  The book closes with the child swinging from the antlers of the moose as the animals go on another sled right that night.

This is a sweet, quick book that kids will really love.