Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Reading the Loudest Roar by Thomas Taylor in story time

A few years ago, our local newspaper came and did an article on library programs and recorded me reading one of my favorite stories, The Loudest Roar by Thomas Taylor. I LOVE that I have this precious memory. If you listen closely you'll here one of my little ones roaring along as well. Such a wonderful memory!! 

I especially love how the videographer gave the reading what I'm calling its own "Reading Rainbow" moment! 

Changes are coming to Story Time Smiles and Amber's Tween Reads

I have noticed the past few months I have neglected these two blogs. I promise it wasn't intentional, I just got extremely busy with my parents-- especially my mother. She's been really sick this past year and even ended up getting half of her foot amputated after a long battle you can read about here. 
So after careful consideration, I have decided to merge these two blogs into one. In the next few weeks, these blogs will be deleted and recreated to be helpful to people with children for birth until they hit the teen years. I will have book reviews, craft ideas, story time plans and music recommendations. My new vision for the blog is to be one stop shopping with anything you may need for story times or just an afternoon with the kids. 

I hope you'll join me on this new adventure and thanks for following me on the past journey and I hope you'll continue to follow as I embark on a new one. Happy reading! Amberdenise

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

How Martha Saved her Parents from Green Beans by David LaRochelle illustrated by Mark Fearling

  "'Green beans are good for you. Green beans will make you big and strong.' Martha doesn't believe what her parents tell her. And nothing will ever --EVER -- make her eat them.
But when some beady-eyed, boot stomping beans burst into town and start causing trouble, Martha knows she has to take action against this gang of outlaws, cutthroats and desperadoes She can think only of one way to stop the villainous veggies, and it's not pretty. . . or tasty." (book jacket)

This book is adorable! Like Martha, there are some vegetables that I just refuse to eat and while green beans are not one of those, I love what happens in this book. The whole story line is great and maybe it will motivate kids to at least try to eat their hated veggies. . . if only to keep them from kidnapping their parents.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Dinosaurs Galore! A special Story Time

When Dinosaurs Came with Everything by Elise Broach, illustrated by David Small
"Just when a small boy thinks he's going to die from running errands with his mom, the most remarkable, the most stupendous things happens. He discovers that one this day, and this day only, stores everywhere are giving away a very special treat with any purchase. No, not the usual lollipop or sticker. Something bigger. Much, MUCH bigger. It's a dream come true, except .  . . what exactly do you do with these Jurassic treats? And how do you convince Mom to let you keep them?" (Book jacket)
This book is absolutely adorable and every child's fantasy. While I never actually wanted a dinosaur as a child, I was convinced my grandmother had one for a pet as a kid. She was a really good sport that day. Without batting an eye she said, "Yep it was a pterodactyl." Anyway, this book really will be every little boy's dream come to life in only the way a picture book can. :O)

Dinosaurs Love Underpants by Claire Freedman, illustrated by Ben Cort
"Dinosaurs where all wiped out, A long way back in history. No one knows quite how or why,
Now this book solves the mystery. . .

The dawning of civilization, the emergence of man, the extinction of the dinosaurs-- no one knows for sure how any of these things came to be, but Claire Freedman and Ben Cort might just have the answer: underpants. " (book jacket)
With humorous illustrations of various types of underpants, the book starts running off through caveman days and the first dinosaur we meet is the terrifying T-Rex who declares" I don't want to eat you up, I want your underpants!" and from that point on you know it's just going to get funnier.
I absolutely adore this book. I think it's hilarious and fun.

Gorgonzola A Very STINKYsaurus by Margie Palatini, illustrated by Tim Bowers
"Long, long ago, when dinosaurs ruled the land, there lived a dinosaur who was the worst of them all: Gorgonzola. Not really large, not really scary, Gorgonzola was known near and far for his . . . D.O. Yes, dinosaur odor. From horn to toe, Gorgonzola was one serious stinker. That is, until a bold little birdie decides it's high time to show this soap-challenged big boy just how to clean up his act." (book jacket)
I can't help but feel bad for Gorgonzola. He (yes its a HE) isn't aware of proper hygiene methods because he was abanodoned/orphaned as an egg and he's been raising himself. This book isn't the best dinosaur story I've ever read, but it is a good introduction to proper hygiene and on being painfully honest with someone else.

The Dinosaur's New Clothes by Diane Goode.
"Meet the Emperor, who vainly prefers to be the height of fashion instead of tending to his responsibilities as a ruler. And what glorious fashion it is! Despite the challenges of his unusual shape, dressmakers manage to make the Emperor's trousers, jackets and robes a storybook in themselves." (Book jacket)

I really like this retelling of Hans Christian Andersen's The Emperor's New Clothes. I find that with the characters being dinosaurs, it's not nearly as disturbing when the Emperor ends up naked. The artwork is adorable and whimsical. I love it! 

Thump, Quack, Moo by Doreen Cronin

 "It's time for the annual Corn Maze Festival. The farm is bursting with activity. The chicken's build a fence around the corn field. The cows give the barn a fresh coat of paint. Duck builds the ticket booth for the hot-air balloon ride.
Everyone is excited. Well, Duck is not exactly excited. But he has a plan. As Farmer Brown designs the corn maze for the festival, Duck does some designing of his own. Guess who is in for a big surprise? . . ." (book jacket)


Doreen Cronin has yet again brought some humor to the farm. I'm not exactly sure what it is about Duck that  I absolutely love, but I can't get enough of him. As always, Duck tries to work around what Farmer Brown wants and get his own way.

This book was delightful and perfect for a story time about Autumn activities and farm life. I could even  be tempted to a story time with only the Click Clack Moo series of books.

Pug and Doug by Steve Breen

"Pug and Doug are best friends. They both love doughnuts, bird watching and polka music. They are also very different. Doug has a big imagination. Pug . . .  not so much. When a misunderstanding between the friend's hurts Doug's feelings, will Pug know how to make things right? This charming and hilarious odd-couple friendship story is perfect for best buddies who usually, but don't always see eye to eye." (book jacket)

Pug and Doug by Steve Breen is adorably illustrated and should catch the attention of the small children. I think it's a good look into the fun and difficult times of friendship. I like how the book shows that a simple misunderstanding can cause a rift between friends.

That being said, I did feel that part of the story seemed a little forced and awkward and maybe just a little too long. Overall, it was a good book that I would use in a friendship story time.