Tag Archive: early-childhood



Children's book: Laughing eyes: Fun rhyming poems for parents and children about everyday life with beautiful illustrationsChildren’s book: Laughing eyes: Fun rhyming poems for parents and children about everyday life with beautiful illustrations by Haya Magner
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I love being asked to read and review books that I wouldn’t have seen otherwise. After all, my little ones are all grown up. In fact, today is my youngest one’s birthday. Hard to believe it was 36 years ago that miracle came to be! She would have loved this book back in the day.

This was going to be a four-star rating. I’m not crazy about poetry. And there wasn’t text-to-speech or a way to make the text part larger. But I managed. I turned the Kindle sideways just to make it bigger for my eyes.

The illustrations were amazing. That alone should have rated the five stars. It made me want to get out my crayons or pencils and start drawing. I think it would affect a child like that, too.

Let’s not forget the lessons taught in the poems. I love parenting styles that allow a child to learn through their own experiences rather than being forced by the parent to do what they say. The parent lets the child go out in socks rather than wear shoes in the rain. And the rhyming story tells how the child feels about cold, soggy feet.

What put me over to the five stars is that this ought to be several books. I’d love to see some of the stories get their own books. So not only would it take several nights to get through the book but the child could go on and read each one of the over and over.

And what I always love in books is the conversational starters. There are so many in this book. What lessons did we learn? What should the child do? What can his parents do? Why do you suppose the child felt like that? This book brought to mind many talks my kids and I had. And I always made sure they heard the illustrator’s names and the author’s names so they would see what imagination and creativity could bring to a world.

Thank you, Haya Magner, for letting me read your charmer!

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Am I small? Bin ich klein?Am I small? Bin ich klein? by Philipp Winterberg

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

According to my GoodReads goal, I am 5 books behind. Since the books I am reading lately have been longer I decided now is the time to read some of my children’s books.

This one is delightful! The pictures are fun. It is bilingual. German first then English under. I was proud that I actually could read the German. There were a couple Questionables. Like, so far I’ve not seen a German contraction. But it was there.

Though this starred a little girl, I think this would be a fun read for either gender. And just becuase it’s a picture book doesn’t make this simple. Adults can have fun, like I did, practicing either English or German while enjoying the story and fun creatures presented for comparison of large or small and extremes.

***

Quick edit:  I also read the French and Esperanto versions of this same book. I didn’t do so well with the French as it isn’t one of the languages I play with as much. At least there were English subtitles. But the Esperanto had no English to help. Luckily by this point I pretty much knew what it said. Still the pictures are fun.

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Today Is MondayToday Is Monday by Eric Carle

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What can I say? It’s Eric Carle!

I picked this up at the library because I wanted art inspiration. I have always thought Mr. Carle’s work visually exciting. From the Hungry Caterpillar and Angry Ladybug, I was in awe of the way Eric could make his own prints and cut them into amazing pictures. The other side of that is his books are so much fun to read aloud to kids.

Having had a few accidents where crepe paper got wet and left an interesting stain behind. (Cleaning said stain wasn’t fun but I loved how the stain looked–though it didn’t belong there.) I realized when I read the first Eric Carle books to my kids that this was crepe paper stains cut and reformed into fantastic illustrations. I have learned since that he uses tissue paper to make his own prints. Makes me want to play with this method.

This book had pictures that looked less like crepe or tissue paper but the visuals didn’t disappoint. The story was rhythmically satisfying. And at the end of the book, the words are placed into a song. I think it would be a fun way to teach a little songwriting or other musical lessons. So with this book, we get so many things to learn.

I didn’t miss how inclusive the author was to minorities and the handicapped. All done in a sneaky way that most children or adults might not notice. But on each reading of this book, the onion can be peeled back to show children new lessons.

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Which is p and Which is q?Which is p and Which is q? by Gita V. Reddy

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a cute little book for the early reader. The illustrations are fun. The story as imaginative as I expect of Gita V. Reddy.

I actually read this a few days ago and am just now getting around to reviewing but the experience stays clear for me. Mostly because some of my offspring and I are dyslexic. This would have been helpful for all of us as early readers.

Ms. Reddy sent me an email a bit ago offering the read for honest review. I was more than willing as I have loved most of what she has presented to me to read. This was just as fun as the rest. As usual, there is a story, with morals and fun adventures.

As it was for the children, the book was fine. I just wish there were more hints or ideas for parents and teachers. Gita does say that one needs more practice with many letters like M and W. But L and 7 come to mind for me, lower case U and lower case N, lower case Q and lowercase G, lower case B and lower case D, 3 and E. I’m sure there are others that get confused. In fact, most letters can be switched backward or upside down. These were all so confusing to me as a kid and I had to watch my boys go through the same confusion.

Nowadays, while studying German, I am finding my old nemesis ‘I before E…’ coming back at me because in German it is the other way around. So dyslexia still plays havoc in my life. But this book is a start for the new generation of readers to play with.

As for the story and pictures, I love the one where the grandfather is emptying the box of wooden letters on the floor for Minki to play with. Having tactile experiences with the letters is so important for children who are learning about the alphabet.

Great job, Gita. I hope this will spare many children and the parents the confusion of letters that won’t stay in the right directions.

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