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The Important Book by renowned children's author Margaret Wise Brown is a lovely little book that teaches young readers what is important about certain things. It discusses daisies, spoons, grass, snow, apples, and other commonplace, everyday items. But the most important thing about The Important Book is what it has to say about you. Vivid illustrations by Leonard Weisgard accompany the lyrical, rhythmic words of the text and beautifully display the many important things described in the book.
Ox-Cart Man by Donald Hall was the winner of the Caldecott Medal in 1980 and tells the delightful story of a farmer and the cycle of providing for his family. In the spring, the farmer hitches his ox to a cart and loads up all the things his family grew or made throughout the year. The family loads maple syrup, honey, cabbages, turnips, wool, birch brooms, candles, shingles, linen, and more. Then, the man travels to Portsmouth and sells everything, including his cart and his ox. The man buys what his family needs for the winter and walks back home. Throughout the year, the family makes and grows and prepares all kinds of things to be loaded up and carried to town on an ox-cart again in the fall. The Ox-Cart Man introduces young readers to life on a 19th century farm and immerses them in the cycle of the seasons through the poetic rhythm of the story.
In Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban, the musical little badger, Frances, does not like trying any new foods at all and decides she only wants to eat bread and jam. When she eats bread and jam she knows what she is getting, and she knows she likes it. The next day, her parents give Frances only bread and jam for breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner. After a day full of nothing but bread and jam, she decides it's nice to eat different kinds of food after all!
The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf, a little bull named Ferdinand is born in Spain. While all the other little bulls run, jump, and butt each other, Ferdinand prefers to be by himself, sitting under a tree and smelling flowers. Though his mother worries about him, Ferdinand is quite happy. One day, when Ferdinand is all grown up, he is chosen to be a part of the bull fights in Spain. The Banderilleros, Picadores, and Matador are terrified of Ferdinand. But Ferdinand does not want to fight! He sits down in the middle of the arena and smells all the flowers the ladies are wearing in their hair. Since he won't put up the fight the crowd was hoping for, Ferdinand is taken back home to live happily smelling flowers under his favorite tree.
From the publisher: When the Pilgrims embarked on their legendary Mayflower voyage in 1620, they couldn't predict what lay ahead of them. In search of religious freedom and a new life, the settlers faced hardships including harsh storms, illness, and unfamiliar terrain. Thanks to their natural perseverance and the help of their neighbor Indians, the Pilgrims survived their first year. And when the harvest the next fall was plentiful, the Pilgrims and the Indians joined together in a three-day celebration, the first Thanksgiving.
A Tree is Nice by Janice May Udry won the Caldecott Honor Medal in 1957 and continues to be adored by young readers for its joyful recounting of the many reasons to love trees. Throughout the pages of the book young readers learn that you can climb a tree, or pick apples from it, or hang a swing in it, or have a picnic under it. Trees protect houses, drop sticks and leaves to play with, and provide shade. For all of these reasons and many more, children learn to love and appreciate trees because a tree is nice.
In The Little Fir Tree by Margaret Wise Brown, a little fir tree grows in a field by himself away from the other trees. One day, a man comes and carefully digs him up. The man carries the tree back to his home where he becomes a Christmas tree in the room of the man's bedridden son. Each spring the man replants the tree, and each winter he brings the tree back to his home to help his son celebrate Christmas. One year, winter comes and the snow falls, but still the man does not come. The little tree is sad and lonely until he sees a light coming through the woods, and the joy of Christmas returns as the tree sees his boy walking towards him. Illustrations by award-winning artist Jim Lamarche elegantly capture the wonder and purity of this classic Christmas story.
In Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree by Robert Barry, Mr. Willowby finds that his Christmas tree is just a bit too tall. He cuts off the top and gives it to his maid, Miss Adelaide. From there, the trimmings of the treetop travel from person to person and eventually even from animal to animal, spreading Christmas cheer everywhere!
Jan Brett's The Twelve Days of Christmas illustrates the classic Christmas carol with magnificent detail. From the pudgy little partridge in his leafy green pear tree to the lively and colorful twelve lords a-leaping, Jan Brett's iconic artwork perfectly captures the spirit of this whimsical Christmas carol.
This special new edition of Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening features the full text of the iconic poem by one of America's most celebrated poets and four-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Robert Frost. In this charming book, Frost's poem has been illustrated by Susan Jeffers with spectacular depictions of the snowy New England landscape. A vellum jacket mimics a frost-covered windowpane as it wraps around the book, inviting young readers into the serene rhythm of this classic poem.
In Gregory's Shadow by Don Freeman, Gregory the groundhog keeps his Shadow close by to help him feel brave when he is shy. When Gregory and Shadow go to find food one day, Shadow gets left outside! Shadow and Gregory are both lonely and look everywhere for one another. What makes the situation even more scary is that tomorrow is Groundhog Day, and all the farmers will be waiting to see whether or not Gregory has Shadow with him. This whimsical book about a groundhog and his shadow is accompanied by loosely-drawn illustrations that perfectly mimic the whimsical nature of the story.
In Pancakes, Pancakes!, Jack wants pancakes for breakfast, but he has to get all the ingredients before his mother can make them. This book goes into the detail of not only how pancakes are made, but how a variety of foods we take for granted get on our plates.
From the publisher: A small canoe carved by an Indian boy makes a journey from Lake Superior all the way to the Atlantic Ocean.
Come On, Rain! by Karen Hesse describes the joyful and freeing experience of a rain shower on a sweltering summer day. Tess looks at the sky and eagerly waits for rain while her mother works on their small garden. When she sees big rain clouds rolling in, Tess goes and gets her friends. Together, they put on their swimsuits and wait for the rain. When the rain finally does fall, the girls' mothers are so excited that they join their daughters in a joyful dance through the puddles. The simple and subtle watercolor illustrations by John J Muth perfectly portray the anticipation and refreshment that comes with a summer rainstorm.
In The Seven Silly Eaters by Mary Ann Hoberman, Peter likes milk, Lucy wants lemonade, and Jack's favorite food is applesauce. As new children are born, Mrs. Peters gets more requests for special food. Her seven Peters are picky eaters! Mrs. Peters does everything she can to keep everyone happy, but the day before her birthday she is exhausted from cooking for her crew. That night the children get together to whip up a meal for their mother, but it doesn't turn out quite how they thought. The hilarious surprise they cook up makes their mother feel celebrated, and it satisfies all seven of the picky eaters!
In A House for Hermit Crab by Eric Carle, the hermit crab has outgrown his shell. He finds another, bigger shell but thinks it is very plain. As hermit crab travels around, he looks for ways to decorate his shell. He ends up with many friends this way including a starfish, a snail, a sea anemone, a coral, a sea urchin, and a lanternfish. Hermit crab is happy with his home, but one day he outgrows that shell too and must say goodbye. This vibrantly illustrated book is perfect for helping young readers learn to deal with change and say goodbye while teaching them about fun and fascinating sea creatures.
Owl Moon by Jane Yolen is the Caldecott Medal winning story of a young girl and her father who go owling one winter's night. The two walk along silently through the snow covered woods as the father calls out for owls. When one lands above them, the girl is awed by the magnificent creature. This soft, rhythmic story illustrates the special bond between a young girl and her father and explores the beauty of the natural world. This nighttime tale is wonderfully accompanied by the watercolor illustrations of artist John Schoenherr. Owl Moon is a book to be treasured and one that is sure to be asked for often at bedtime.
Simply Classical Read-Alouds, SC Art, Music, & Enrichment Level 1
SC Level 1
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