Two great books your students will LOVE!

If I were a lion

I was at Barnes & Noble recently browsing the shelves for good read alouds for preschoolers.  One of the first books I saw when I entered the children’s section was If I Were a Lion
by Sarah Weeks.  If you teach preschool or kindergarten or you have a child between the ages of 2-6 they will adore this book!   If I Were a Lion ranks right up there with the ultra-popular No David! series by David Shannon.  I always wished there was a female version of David because it is so stereotypical that the naughty child is male, well my wish has come true because the main character in If I Were a Lion is female.   The story is about a little girl who misbehaves and is sent to time out.  It has all the elements of a great read aloud for young children; the text is written in rhyme, the illustrations are very well done, and the story is told in first person by a little girl who uses her imagination to tell the reader who she really is.  When I read this book aloud to a group of preschoolers in my model classroom they were enthralled by the wild antics of the naughty little girl.  They made spontaneous parallels  between the main character in If I Were a Lion and the main character in the No David! series.    If I Were a Lion is a must have for every preschool teacher and parent.  


Another book that caught my eye in B&N was The Marvelous Toy by Tom Paxton.  The illustrations are spectacular and grab the reader from across the room.   This book is actually based on a song written by Tom Paxton which I had never heard before.  I was looking for a book that would fall into the memoir genre to read aloud to my students.   After reading  The Marvelous Toy it definitely qualifies as a memoir, the story is about a young boy who receives a very interesting toy from his father.   The toy does many interesting things but you never know what it is, this was fantastic because it led to lots of great discussion with the students about what they thought the toy might be.  The end is also very touching, I won’t give it away but it leads to even more great discussion.   The book comes with a CD so you can listen to the song and play it for your students.   I have included a video of Peter, Paul, and Mary singing  The Marvelous Toy, apparently John Denver also covered it. 

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