Today is August 10 and, to celebrate, I am participating in 10 for 10 (#pb10for10)! If you follow that hash tag, you will discover blog posts from folks from all over listing the 10 picture books they can not live without. Here are mine! In no particular order…
1. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
This is the first picture book that I actually remember reading as a kid. It is the perfect story – who hasn’t gotten upset with their parents and dreamed about running away? And, I love how when Max comes back, his dinner is waiting for him…and it is still hot. The illustrations are fantastic. An “ah ha” moment for me is when I realized that the illustrations slowly start to take up whole pages in the book as the story evolves. I just love it. So fun to read aloud too! Always nice to have a dance party break during a good story! PS – Did you see Colbert’s interview with Sendak? So funny!
2. Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems
If you read my blog regularly, the fact that Mo Willems made my list is not a surprise. I LOVE MO WILLEMS. Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus was my first Mo discovery. The Pigeon is quite a character – I love his personality and his temper tantrums. This is so fun to read to kids – interactive, easy for them to act out, and they can easily create their own pigeon story. The Pigeon has a super fun website and app!
3. Olivia by Ian Falconer
The Olivia books are so clever. I love the illustrations (and how there is often something “real” included – like a picture of the actual Supreme Court). Olivia is super smart and funny. I think kids love these books because they can see themselves in Olivia. Check out her website!
4. Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin; illustrated by James Dean
Pete is groovy, no doubt about it. I love this one because of the song that you sing to go along with it – KIDS LOVE IT – and the message, “no matter what you step in, it’s ALL GOOD.” We all need to be reminded of that from time to time!
5. The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds
How can you not LOVE this book? LOVE LOVE LOVE the message, “make your mark and see where it takes you.” Kids really seem to “get” that we all have something to contribute after reading this story. Don’t forget to celebrate Dot Day in September!
6. Bark, George by Jules Feiffer
The joy I get from reading this book to kids for the first time is a little out of control. This is a fantastic story to act out – love to use it for storytelling and with puppets. The ending is one of the best out there! I’m not going to give it away…you’ll just have to read it 🙂
7. Dog Heaven by Cynthia Rylant
This is a MUST READ for dog lovers. Beautiful illustrations.
8. Wild About Books by Judy Sierra
I read this at the beginning of every school year. It’s so fun to read aloud and a perfect way to get kids “wild about books” and reading. The app is very cool too!
9. Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William Joyce
The first time I watched this short film, I cried. Book lovers MUST WATCH. I showed it to all of my 1st and 2nd graders and they loved it too. Some even cried with me (my littlest book lovers). They did have lots of questions though after watching it, which are answered in the book. I’m so glad there is now a print book that goes with the film! The book can stand alone (it’s lovely) or you can watch the film and then read the book out loud. Either way, you must read and watch this story. Now. PS – if you ever wondered what is so great about book apps and the iPad, you must play with this app.
10. Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney
A classic. Miss Rumphius travels the world making it a better, more beautiful place. I love reading and talking about this one with kids. They have lots of ideas for making the world better – we should listen to them.
That’s my 10 for 10! What’s yours?