PPBF: Hector Protector and As I Went Over theWater

HectorProtectorcover.jpg
Illustrator: Maurice Sendalk
Publisher: Harper & Row, 1963
Age: 2-5
Themes: Mother Goose rhymes, behavior
OpeningHector Protector was dressed all in green.
Summary: (from the publisher) Maurice Sendak has interpreted these old’ Mother Goose rhymes in animated sequences that have the aliveness and immediacy of a child’s own imaginings. There is little in these verses to suggest the settings, the characterizations, the unforeseen twists and turns of Mr. Sendak’s fantastical picture-stories. They extend the boundaries of the short rhymes and add surprising dimension.

HectorProtectorendpapersWhy I like this book: The visual interpretations are stories themselves, perfect examples of what an illustrator can bring to the text, especially to something so familiar and seemingly ‘non-illustratable’.

HectorProtector1Resources/Activities: For any age group: pick a Mother Goose rhyme and bring it to life: with hand-drawn pictures, a collage, puppet show or cartoon. This book can be put to good use in a high school classroom to introduce illustration as a profession. Check out this page for more info on nursery rhymes and their origins.

HectorProtector4For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: Animals should definitely not wear clothing

AnimalsShouldDefinitelyNotcoverAuthor: Judi Barrett
Illustrator: Ron Barrett
Publisher: 2002, Weekly Reader (Originally published by Aladdin, S&S, 1970)
Age: 2-5
Themes: animals, clothing, concept book
OpeningAnimals should definitely not wear clothing….
Summary: (from my library catalog) Pictures of animals wearing clothes show why this would be a ridiculous custom for them to adopt. (I doubt this was the original pitch!)

AnimalsShouldDefinitelyNot1.jpgWhy I like this book: Simply silly! The concept is clear and easy for young and old to find hilarious. The illustrations have just the right amount of dry humor in them, and I love the design – even the cover is unconventional yet straightforward. A classic that has stood the test of time!

AnimalsShouldDefinitelyNot2Resources/Activities: what else can we think of that animals should better leave to humans? Why? What if we reversed the thought? Should humans chew grass? Grow fur?

AnimalsShouldDefinitelyNot3For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: Sometimes I Like to Curl up in a Ball

SometimesILikecoverAuthor: Vicki Churchill
Illustrator: Charles Fuge
Publisher: Sterling, 2001
Age: 3 and up
Themes: wombats, parent-child story, rhyming story
OpeningSometimes I like to curl up in a ball, so no one can see me because I’m so small.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Wombat likes to do many different things during the day, but when night comes he seeks out the coziest place of all.

Sometimes1Why I like this book: A customer recommended this book to me, and it is rather adorable! So fun to read aloud and the wombat’s expressions are priceless! A great bedtime story and the ending has a satisfying “ahhh”.

Sometimes2Resources/Activities: discuss what simple activities give you pleasure; make a bunch of funny faces; take time to go outside and do the things that wombat likes to do.

Sometimes3For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: Coming and Going

ComingandGoingcoverAuthor: Isabel Minhós Martins
Illustrator: Bernardo Carvalho
Publisher: Tate Publishing, 2014
Age: 5 and up
Themes: nature, transportation, human impact on the environment
OpeningThe head, it is said, is not just for wearing a hat. Feet, we might also say, are not just for wearing shoes.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Humans aren’t the only ones on Earth who travel long distances. Many birds, fish, and mammals migrate hundreds of miles in search of food, warmer climates, or places to raise their young. But it’s not just the incredible distances these creatures travel; it’s the way they do it that makes us slow down and think…

ComingandGoing1Why I like this book: the bold clear graphic style of illustration is a perfect background for a serious and very important subject.

ComingandGoing2Resources/Activities: discuss how we get where we need to go, how that differs depending where one lives: in the city, a town or in a rural area; how do things we need get to us? Great supplement to a unit on transportation.

ComingandGoing4For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: Mrs. Goose’s Baby

MrsGoosesBabyCover.jpgAuthor/Illustrator: Charlotte Voake
Publisher: Walker, 1989
Age: 3-103
Themes: insects, competition, wordless picture books
Opening: One day Mrs.Goose found an egg and made a nest to put it in.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Mrs. Goose finds an egg, sits on it to keep it safe and warm, and soon has a baby all her own. But Mrs. Goose’s baby isn’t just like her.

MrsGoosesBaby2Why I like this book: This book has a rare quality, quiet yet kind of quirky. The humor is so subtle it’s barely there. It forced me to slow down and really think about these characters; the plot is so simple you barely notice the arc. The reader knows all, yet is compelled to see how the main character will react when she finds out. This book deserves a hug!

MrsGoosesBaby3.jpgResources/Activities: This is a great book to lead a discussion on adoption, or making your own family, and how love can develop.

MrsGoosesBaby6.jpgFor more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: Playground

PlaygroundCoverAuthor/Illustrator: Mies van Hout
Publisher: Lemniscaat, 2015
Age: 3-6
Themes: playgrounds, imagination, animals
Opening: Let’s go to the playground! Are you coming?
Summary: (from my library catalog) Two children find many adventures on their journey to the playground.

Playground2Why I like this book: For the exciting textures, colors and compositions, the cute characters and the silliness! Just look at these spreads!

Playground4.jpgResources/Activities: Explore watercolor wash-blending, and just go play!!!

Playground6For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: Daytime Visions, An Alphabet

DaytimeVisionsCoverAuthor/Illustrator: Isol
Publisher: Enchanted Lion, 2015 (adapted into Engl. by Isol and Elisa Amado)
Age: 3 and up
Themes: alphabet, feelings, color
Opening: Aa – That’s not an answer.
Summary: (from my library catalog) This alphabet book explores feelings, raises questions, and features rich, thought-provoking pictures.

DaytimeVisionsEndpapersResources/Activities: compare with other alphabet books; make your own personal alphabet book; read about Isol’s work at Picturebook Makers; visit Isol’s blog.

DaytimeVisions1Why I like this book: Simple, clever collages – all playful explorations of letters, sounds and color which will put anyone in the mindset for learning.

DaytimeVisions2For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

DaytimeVisions3

PPBF: Slug Needs a Hug

SlugNeedsAHugCover

Author: Jeanne Willis
Illustrator: Tony Ross
Publisher: Andersen Press, 2015
Age: 3 and up
Themes: slugs, affection, creativity, stories in rhyme, mother and child
OpeningOnce upon a time-y, there was a little slimy, spotty, shiny, whiny slug.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Slug worries that the reason his mother never hugs him is that he is ugly, so he follows his friends’ advice to be furry, with a beak, horns, and more, until his mother can no longer recognize him, but then he learns that she loves him, no matter what.

SlugNeedsAHugEndpapers.pngWhy I like this book: I have long been a fan of this team, and am also seldom disappointed by any of their collaborations. Fun, funny, bright, cheerful, a big bouquet of a book that does not stink. Haha! But it will charm your socks off!

SlugNeedsAHug2.jpgResources/Activities: Discuss how do we show affection and how other cultures or even animals show affection ? What are some creative ways we can show affection without physical contact?

SlugNeedsAHug3For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: What to Do With a Box

WhatToDoWithABoxCoverAuthor: Jane Yolen
Illustrator: Chris Sheban
Publisher: Creative Editions, 2016
Age: 3 and up
Themes: imagination, cardboard boxes, stories in rhyme
OpeningA box! A box is a strange device.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Jane Yolen poetically reminds young readers that a simple box can be a child’s most imaginative plaything as artist Chris Sheban illustrates its myriad and magical uses.

WhatToDoWithABox1Why I like this book: I love cardboard boxes, not just because of the great memories of appliances delivered in the neighborhood and the whole gang of kids piling in and rolling down the hill, or of the multiple box pirate ship we built for my son’s birthday, but for the allure of adventure! And this book is a beautiful invitation!

WhatToDoWithABox2Resources/Activities: get a box – no instructions needed!

WhatToDoWithABox4For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

PPBF: The Ladybug Race

LadybugRaceCoverAuthor/Illustrator: Amy Nielander
Publisher: Pomegranate Kids, 2015
Age: 3-103
Themes: insects, competition, wordless picture books
Opening: Introducing: the Versizer! The book you are holding in your hands is a marvel of squishy science. After many years of mulling and figuring, I have developed a device called the Versizer that will transform lengthy novels, myths, and epic poems into delightful nuggets of nonsense.
Summary: (from my library catalog) The plots of nine classic stories are summarized in this collection of silly verses.

LadybugRace1Why I like this book: So simple, yet so clever and so much fun! Like most kids, I like looking at bugs and these are all drawn to actual size!

LadybugRace2Resources/Activities: Perfect read for an insect unit: discuss the variety of one species, and find out which ladybug species to look for in your geographic area; search for the word ‘ladybug’ in different languages and talk about the direct translations; how are ladybugs beneficial in the garden? (I sure could use their help defending my currant bushes!)

LadybugRace3For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.