Thursday, September 27, 2012

Great Picture Books for Jealousy

We have not yet had real problems with jealousy.  Perhaps it is because we read many of these books before our youngest's arrival. Big brother has always been a very welcoming and kind sibling.   

But we do deal with jealousy on birthdays - this year in particular.  Greysen recently celebrated his fifth birthday at a party with all of his friends.  We decided long ago that we would only do family birthdays until the fifth birthday.  However, Camden is about to turn three and is now expecting that she will get the same kind of party.  So we are doing our best to help her understand.  Of course, the usual birthday jealousy comes from one child being jealous of the attention and gifts.  Some of these books are great for kids to learn to be respectful that this is someone else's special day. 

A Birthday For Frances by  Russell Hoban, 
illustrated by Lillian Hoban
For the oh-so-common sibling birthday jealousy.

When I Feel Jealous (Way I Feel Books) by Cornelia Maude Spelman, illustrated by Kathy Parkinson.  This particular book does an excellent job describing a number of different ways that children can feel jealous.  For young children who have trouble finding words to express their feelings this is a great book to teach them.

The Berenstain Bears and the Green-eyed Monster by  Stan and Jan Berenstain
Sister is jealous of Brother's new bike.  Also made into a nice short film.

Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories by Dr. Seuss
All three stories are great tales of humility.  They help to show that jealousy is never good.

A To Z Do You Ever Feel Like Me? : a guessing ALPHABET by Bonnie Hausman, photography by Sandi Fellman.  A great book on many levels - discussing 26 different feelings, the alphabet and seek and find in the border pictures.  This book could have been so much better, some pages rhyme while others do not.  An odd inconsistency in an otherwise enjoyable read. 

Sometimes I Feel Awful by Joan Singleton Prestine
A young girl has a day full of different moods. Although she starts out happy, she begins to feel different throughout the day. She does not want to share with her friend and gets upset when he plays with her toys. She learns what she should have said to make her family and friends understand.

Books that are great for new sibling jealousy: 

Little Monster Did It! by Helen Cooper 
Beautifully illustrated story about Amy, who is not so sure if she likes the new baby.  When odd things happen she blames her toy.

Grumpy Gloria by Anna Dewdney
Gloria has to share attention with her owner's new doll and this makes her grumpy.  The children try to cheer Gloria up (also a wonderful lesson for kids) in this silly story.

Marshmallow by Clare Turlay Newberry
An old classic (Caldecott winner 1943), this is a good one for kids to learn about sharing attention with a new sibling.  The story is about a cat and a rabbit, but the lesson is perfect for children to understand the concept of dealing with jealousy.

Noisy Nora by Rosemary Wells
Nora makes a lot of noise because she feels neglected.  Her attempts for attention are told very simply and are wonderful for even the smallest of children.

Buzz Bumble To The Rescue by Lynn E Hazen, illustrated by Jill Newton
Fun illustrations with a bit of humor only adults will pick up on, but still a good book for new sibling jealousy.

Howler by 
Michael Rosen, illustrated by Neal Layton. This story is reminiscent of Lady and the Tramp.  An entertaining look at a dog's view of a new baby in the house.

We love new books at our house - if you love any literature on this topic that didn't make my list, please do share!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Great Picture Books for Inkblots and Other Art

Art is a subject quite close to my heart and that is evident in my very long list of recommendations.  I spent my college years frequenting many a museum as an art major.  I adore art and creativity and want to open my childrens' eyes to all of the possibilities at a young age.  We love to do craft/art projects and I even did an  A to Z Animals project with Greysen and his friend last year - soon to start with Camden as she is just learning her ABC's.  You can find those here:

We've recently discovered some wonderful art books that have had us making some very creative projects. We made our own "inkblots" with acrylic paint and fingerprint drawings (although my youngest was against getting her fingers dirty for this!).  Outside of my own pins on Pinterest, this is my favorite resource for art projects related to childrens' books:

Art by Patrick McDonnell 
A simple, but beautiful, ode to art.

Bridget's Beret by Tom Lichtenfeld
Bridget's beret is her artistic expression - can she still make art without it?  

Not a Box - and -
Not a Stick by Antoinette Portis 
These two books are an excellent way to get kids thinking creatively.  It's not just a box/stick - they magically become so much more with a little imagination.

the dot  - and - 
ish by Peter H. Reynolds
Are both wonderful books about creativity and not being afraid to try something.

Beautiful Oops by Barney Saltzberg 
This is a brilliant book.  About making art out of mistakes.  

Willy's Pictures by Anthony Browne
Seen Art? by Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Lane Smith. I love art museums and love great, historical works of art. It is exciting for me to share these things with my children. Both of these books are incredibly entertaining ways to introduce this to your children.

Inkblot: Drip, Splat and Squish Your Way to Creativity by Margaret Peot
 Ed Emberley's Complete Funprint Drawing Book by Ed Emberley - who has written loads of books, the most popular of which is Go Away, Big Green Monster! Emberley has a number of other art and drawing books, but this is a favorite at our house.

I Ain't Gonna Paint No More! by Karen Beaumont, illustrated by David Catrow. If you've ever painted with a pre-schooler, then you will enjoy this book.  You must be prepared for a mess and a mess this child makes - the kids find it hilarious!

Art & Max by David Wiesner
A wonderfully imaginative book!  Art is the artist and he doesn't think that Max can paint, but what Max creates is fantastic.

A Day With No Crayons by Elizabeth Rusch, illustrated by Chad Cameron. This book opened up a great discussion on using other mediums.  Most children are only familiar with crayons, markers, acrylics, but art can be so much more.

Swirl by Swirl: Spirals in Nature by Joyce Sidman
Perfect Square by Michael Hall
Two very clever books that look at shapes in a new way.

The following three are excellent educational color books - primary and secondary colors, and color mixing.  These have taught my kids so much.

Warthog's Paint: A Messy Color Book by Pamela Duncan Edwards

Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh

White Rabbit's Color Book by Alan Baker

We also adore the Sesame Street video/song Three Primary Colors that is excellent for teaching children about colors and color-mixing:

Chalk by Bill Thompson
And a late addition - I forgot about this book until I saw it at the library this week.  This book is excellent for art or storytelling.  An extra fun activity - make the book come alive: Chalk Activity 

The iPad also has a great app called Art Circles.  There are multiple circles organized by color or curator or other topics.  Some pieces of art even have a mega-zoom feature.  The kids and I have had great fun exploring art this way.

We love new books at our house - if you love any literature on this topic that didn't make my list, please do share!