Category Archives: Children’s Books

September TumbleBooks Book Club [For Kids!]

How It Works

  • Ask your library if they have access to TumbleBooks. It could be linked through your libraries website under ebooks. For access through the Albany Public library go here (my local library.)
  • Read one of the suggested books a week with your kid(s.) I’d love to hear their thoughts on the books too!
  • Comment on this post, or write your own blog post about the experience. Let me know which book was your favorite.
  • If you have a blog you can add our badge to your post/site to encourage others to join in.


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Septembers’s Theme is…


Week 1: Bully Goat Grim, Author: Willy Claflin, TumbleTime: 13 minutes 50 seconds, Reading Level A/R: 4.9

Week 2: Enemy Pie, Author: Derek Munson, TumbleTime: 10 minutes, Reading Level A/R: 3.2

Week 3: Best Friend Trouble, Author: Frances Itani, TumbleTime: 8 minutes, Reading Level A/R: 3.0

Week 4: I Miss Franklin P. Shuckles, Author: Ulana Snihura, TumbleTime: 7 minutes, Reading Level A/R: 2.2


Bonus: Watch a movie about friends we particularly like Lilo & Stitch.

Introducing the TumbleBooks Book Club

As a member of our local library board I enjoying trying to use all the services our library has to offer and encouraging others to do the same. One of the best kept secrets of our library is TumbleBooks. An online eBook reader for kids. In order to encourage others to use TumbleBooks to read with their kids I’m starting a monthly TumbleBooks book club. I choose June as the launching month because I know how important it is to keep kids reading through the summer months. Hopefully this will be a fun way for your kids to read all summer long!

How To Join:

  1. Ask your local library if they offer TumbleBooks, or check out the Albany Public Library collection. (If you don’t have access to TumbleBooks you can still participate by checking the books out at your library.)
  2. Read one of the suggested books a week with your kid(s.) I’d love to hear their thoughts on the books too!
  3. Comment on this post, or write your own blog post about the experience. Let me know which book was your favorite.
  4. If you have a blog you can add our badge to your post/site to encourage others to join in.


Get the badge for your site:
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June’s Theme is…



Week 1:  Chicken Big, Author: Keith GravesTumbleTime9 minutes and 20 seconds, Reading Level A/R: 2.7 

Week 2: Can Hens Give Milk?, AuthorJoan Betty StuchnerTumbleTime7 minutes and 45 seconds, Reading Level A/R: 3.0 

Week 3: Louise, The Adventures of a Chicken, AuthorKate DiCamilloTumbleTime11 minutes and 30 seconds, Reading Level A/R: 3.8 

Week 4:  Coriander the Contrary Hen, AuthorDori Chaconas,  TumbleTime9 minutes, Reading Level A/R: 2.9 

June Book Club

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Chicken Facts:

  • Over 9 billion chickens are raised for food annually in the US.giphy (1)
  • With 25 billion chickens in the world, there are more of them than any other bird species.
  • Chickens are omnivores. They eat seeds and insects but also larger prey like small mice and lizards.
  • There are roughly 280 million laying birds in the United States, and each produces 250 to 300 eggs a year.

More chicken facts at the Oklahoma Ag in the Classroom page.

Bonus chicken craft to do with your kids.

Drop Everything and Read 2016

deardayD.E.A.R Day is coming up tomorrow April 12th. Drop Everything and Read is a celebration of author Beverly Cleary’s Birthday.  To celebrate you simply pick a time (at least 30 mins), pick a book, and just read. It’s the perfect holiday if you ask me.

Other Ideas for Celebrating:

  • Read a book by Beverly Cleary, like Ramona Quimby, Age 8, the inspiration for D.E.A.R day. Challenge yourself to start and finish it in one day.
  • Go to the library and read there. Our library has lots of comfortable reading areas. Find a book on the shelf and sit down and read. If you like the book check it out.
  • Read a book that ties into a favorite TV. For kids read an Arthur book, like Arthur’s New Puppy or Curious George. For adults try something like this Downtown Abby inspired novel or George RR Martins A Game of Thorns.
  • Watch an interview with one of your favorite authors. Check out this great list from Reading Rockets. Then read a book by that author.
  • Do a book craft with your kids.
  • Lastly, you could to wear it. Wear a fun t-shirt, do your nail literary style (I have lots of great ideas on this pin board,) wear a vintage library button, something to say “I’m Love Reading!” I will be wearing Jamberry “Word to the Wise” nail wraps.

Bonus: Watch the Oregon Public Broadcasting special on Beverly Cleary.



5 Books for 5 Year Olds

My Goddaughter is now 5, and has started Kindergarten. We are able to read longer books now and she is even able to sound out some of the words herself. Looking back over the 5 Books for 4 Year Olds post I see some she still likes (The Duckling Gets a Cookie!?), and others that we have not read in a long time.

Here are some of her favorite books right now.

  1. Bad Kitty Gets A Bath & Bad Kitty Vs. Uncle MurrayWe have read these books so many times I’ve lost count. The original Bad Kitty and Poor Puppy picture books are still favorites, but these comic/chapter books bring Kitty’s hijinks to a new level. These are laugh out loud funny to the five-year-old even if she nearly has them memorized.
  2. Cloudy With a Chance of MeatballsShe came home from school one afternoon and announced that they had read a book at school that I had never heard of. When she told me it was Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, I had to take her upstairs and show her my copy. We’ve only read it about 100 times since that day. 🙂
  3. The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That Along with the ever favorite The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham we have been enjoying the newer Cat in the Hat Learning Library books. The ones we’ve collected so far are There’s No Place Like Space!, Oh Say Can You Say What’s the Weather Today?, and Oh Say Can You Seed? These books are bright and colorful and having the rhyming meter that Dr. Seuss was know for, and they contain lots of great facts for learning about their subjects. Next are on list is Oh, Say Can You Say Di-no-saur?
  4. The_Good_Dinosaur_01 Anna’s Best Friends and Disney Story CentralFrozen is huge here, as I suspect it is any where there is a little girl these days. Which is why she loves the Step into Reading Books about the characters from Frozen, and of course they are even better if they come with stickers inside! And then there are the e-books from Disney Story Central. She loves having the computer read the books to her and can spend a lot of time reading and re-reading the Disney books there.
  5. Any With Dinosaurs -Whether it’s the Little Kids First Big Book of Dinosaurs, Harry and the Bucketful of Dinosaurs, or The Good Dinosaur if it has dinosaurs she loves it! She’s always loved dinosaurs, but as she grows up she is able to pay attention more to factual books as well as fiction books staring her favorite per-historic creatures.

5 Books for 4 Year Olds

My goddaughter is now 4! And while we still enjoy many of the same titles from my (esp. Biscuit) I thought I’d do an update on some of the books we’ve recently found enjoyable.

1. Step Into Reading Disney Princess Books – Titles we enjoy are Winter Wishes, A Pony for a Princess, Surprise for a Princess. At our house we enjoy princesses equally with dinosaurs. Both are enchanting for the imaginary thinking of a four year old. These step into reading books are colorful and quick reads with characters she already knows and enjoys.

2. The Duckling Gets a Cookie!? We found this one at our library, and being by one of our favorite authors Mo Willems, we knew we’d enjoy it. However we absolutely LOVED it! Willems does it again with hot headed Pigeon and a very polite duckling teaching kids about asking nicely for something and sharing. We also enjoyed the newest Pigeon book The Pigeon Needs a Bath!(Which is the Goodreads choice for best picture book of 2014.)

3. Amelia Bedelia Now that she’s older and can understand why the things that Amelia Bedelia does are silly she really enjoys these books. Dressing the chicken is esp a favorite part for us. You have to watch what you say to Amelia Bedelia because she takes everything literally, but at least she makes a great lemon meringue pie.

4. The Great Fairy Race This is the only Tinkerbell book that we come back to again and again. I’ve read it to her so many times I can practically recite it. I don’t know if it’s the diversity of the Fairies and their “rides” for the race or the way that the races ends (a twist on the tortoise and the hare story) but she loves this book.

5. Cap’n Smudge – A great story about bullies and revenge and the consequences of our actions with the amazing art of Robin James. Now out of print like many of the Serendipity books that I remember as a child. I pick them up whenever I see them at thrift stores or garage sales because they are so dear and the art is so amazing. Cap’n Smudge and The Dream Tree are our two favorites.

5 Books for 2 year olds

For the last nine months I’ve been watching my 2 year old goddaughter while her mother works. Little bug, as I call her, and I have lots of adventures together. Our favorite spots are the library and church. When we come home from the library we sit and read the new books we’ve checked out. Then she reads them to her little toy dog.

Of course these book become bedtime books and get read again and again during the weeks we have them. Over time we’ve developed a few favorite series (even picking some copies up at garage sales) and I’m going to show them to you here.

1. Biscuit – The adorable little puppy who is learning about the world is a lot of fun to read. Biscuit responds to almost every line in the book with “Woof! Woof!” He is so well drawn with good expressions that you can tell if those are suppose to be read with question, excitement, or disappointment. Reading it out loud is a hoot! We love these ones Biscuit’s Big Friend, Biscuit and the Baby, Biscuit’s Day at the Farm, Biscuit in the Garden.

2. Elephant and Piggy- Piggy and Gerald (the elephant) are best friends who go through a lot of ups and downs together. The books are whimsical and expressive. The over arching theme is friendship, forgiveness and working through feelings. Some titles you might want to try Can I Play Too?, Elephants Cannot Dance!, There Is a Bird On Your Head! , Pigs Make Me Sneeze!.

3. Little Dino’s Don’t – Learning to get along can be hard. These books teach kids  important lessons about social behaviors in a silly context with dinosaurs and fun rhythms. Little Dinos Don’t Yell, Little Dinos Don’t Hit , Little Dinos Don’t Bite, Little Dinos Don’t Push.

4. If You Give a Pig a Pancake We’ve only read the first one so far, but we’ve read it a lot. Silly stories with good pictures go far with 2 year olds. I guess you could say that the book teaches kids about cause and effect or about making too many ridiculous requests. The truth is its just a fun story with great illustrations.

5. Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! By Mo Willems the author of the Elephant & Piggy series. When the bus driver takes a break he leaves you in charge of making sure the pigeon doesn’t drive off with it. Will you give in? A book about peer pressure, and temper tantrums.