by Judy Rabin
“What is the use of a book, thought Alice, without pictures or conversations?”
– Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
How can we help children get the most from books? We want to make reading an enjoyable and satisfying experience for both children and the adults who read with them. When we engage children in conversations about the stories, it helps them make connections and builds critical thinking skills. The trick is, it has to be fun! Here are some books that will spark curiosity and some questions to get the conversations started.
Thank you, Jackson
by Niki and Jude Daly
Jackson the donkey works very hard every day carrying fruits and vegetables uphill to market. One day, though, he just won’t budge. The farmer gets more and more frustrated until his wife and son encourage him to simply use his manners and ask Jackson nicely. Has the farmer taken Jackson for granted? Can he learn from his mistakes? What does it mean to “count your blessings?”
What About Moose?
by Corey Rosen Schwartz
Building a tree house takes teamwork. Fox and her friends have a plan. Everyone has a job to do. Uh oh! Moose has his own ideas, and they’re not very helpful. What’s wrong with Moose’s approach? Hasn’t he heard about cooperation? Do we work together at home to get our chores done?
Bug in a Vacuum
by Melanie Watt
What happens when a little bug is sucked up by a great big vacuum cleaner? Surely there must be a way out! Maybe he can talk to someone, make some promises, perhaps, and cut a deal to set himself free. When things don’t always go your way, sometimes you need a little patience and perseverance. Have you heard the saying, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again?”
The Featherless Chicken
by Chih-Yuan Chen
Here’s a story about a very strange bunch of chickens. Their feathers are very unusual — they are made from all sorts of funny objects that the chickens think are real feathers. When one chicken finds more creative camouflage, the others make fun of him. These are chickens, after all, and aren’t they all the same underneath? What happens when some people think they’re better than others?
Clever Jack Takes the Cake
by Candace Fleming
What would you do if you were invited to the princess’ 10th birthday party but didn’t have money for a gift? Well, clever Jack decides to bake the princess a cake. Now, he just has to get it to the castle in one piece. What could possibly go wrong? Enjoy this delicious spin on the traditional Jack and the Beanstalk tale. Are all gifts things? What would you want to give someone who supposedly has everything?
by Kathleen T. Pelley
Mr. McGregor can invent just about anything — from jellybean erasers and glow in the dark books to detachable monkey tails. When the Royal Society of Inventors offers him a beautiful new laboratory, it’s too quiet! He can’t think. Can he invent himself a solution to the problem? It’s fun to be creative. If you wanted to invent something how would you start? What kind of skills would you need?
The Day Everything Went Wrong
by Moritz Petz
Badger decides to spend his day doing only the things he enjoys. From the minute he gets out of bed, there’s one mishap after another. His day is not going well. Maybe a visit with his friends will cheer him up. When Badger sees his pals, he discovers something surprising. Could everyone be having a miserable day? The biggest surprise of all is waiting for Badger right at home. What do you think it is?
For more great books to read aloud and additional resources visit our website.
Events at the Woodbridge Library
We offer ongoing drop-in programs for babies and toddlers, story times, book groups and craft programs for older children and some special events as well. Children, ages 5 and up, are invited to register online for the Sciencetellers special Halloween program, Dragons & Dreams, on Saturday, October 17 at 2 p.m. Come and see interactive and explosive experiments with dry ice, fog, smoke-filled bubbles, flying rockets and more. Visit our website for details.
The Woodbridge Town Library is located at 10 Newton Road in Woodbridge. For more information, call 203-389-3439 or visit www.woodbridge.lioninc.org.
Judy Rabin is the Head of Children’s Services at the Woodbridge Library.