Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Mother Goose

I was stunned to learn research that shows in 1945, the average elementary school student had a vocabulary of 10,000 words. Today, children have a vocabulary of only 2,500 words.

Tony Stead, senior national literacy consultant for Mondo Publishing in New York said:  "So many parents are not reading to their children anymore.  And a lot of problems come from children not memorizing rhymes, the bread-and-butter of traditional early children’s literature."

Really?  You mean those silly Humpty Dumpty and Little Miss Muffet rhymes aren't silly after all?

“Listening comprehension precedes reading comprehension,” Mr. Stead said. “In order for a child to understand what they are reading, they have to be able to hear the language first. A lot of the traditional rhymes, such as ‘Jack and Jill’ and ‘Humpty Dumpty,’ were repetitious and allowed us to memorize basic structures and patterns in the English language, then put it together. It’s important that young children learn to memorize through verse."  Read more in this article found here.

Miss Nancy at the Storybook Shoppe recommended us Mother Goose by Sylvia Long to help Connor, my 16 month old son, with his speech development.  Though he is coming along ok, the words aren't coming quite as easily and quickly as maybe I think they should.  Because he is an active toddler, it's hard to get him to sit for a long time to read.

With this one, we grab a sippy cup of milk and sit back, relax and turn the beautiful pages for as long as he'll let me. Connor loves the rythmic words and natural sing song voices that can occur when you read this treasure.   This is the type of book that will get passed down from generation to generation and also makes a great gift. I hope too that it will help him develop his language.

Hardcover & 108 Pages of beautiful illustrations
Just $20.60
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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Enemy Pie

If only world peace were as simple as this.  Enemy Pie by Derek Munson sure makes us think it's possible...

When a little boy is having trouble with Jeremy Ross, another boy who laughed at him when he struck out at his baseball game, had parties that he wasn't invited to, and the new kid on the block -- his Dad takes out his recipe for "enemy pie."   Then his Dad challenges him to spend the whole day with his enemy.  Soon enough the boys are playing basketball, throwing the boomerang, and playing in the tree house!

Copyrighted material - used via Citrus Blog

When the pie is cooled and they're ready to eat it, the boy can't help but warn Jeremy of the pie!  But his Dad is eats it with gusto.  Enemy Pie isn't what it seems.

Copyrighted Material - used via In The Pages of A Book

This delightful book teaches 1st and 2nd graders the value of turning your enemies into friends.  It's a lesson about extending the olive branch and trying just a little bit harder to get to know someone.  Your enemy might after all just be your best friend.

Miss Nancy at The Storybook Shoppe recommended this book to our family because she knows Molly loves whimsical illustrations and she's entering that "best friend" stage.  (Where it's very important to have a best friend. And if someone hurts your feelings or says something wrong instantly they aren't your best friend anymore!  I dislike every minute of it!)   When Molly says that someone "is mean" to her at school, I challenge her to make that person her "best friend."   This book is a great way to share that lesson.

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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Library Lion

With our love of books and adoration of animals, Miss Nancy at The Storybook Shoppe knew that Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen would touch our hearts.


We all know that there are some basic rules about being in a library.  No talking, eating, drinking or running, but what about a lion in the library? Head librarian Miss Merriweather doesn't see any rules about lions being in the library, so she allows him to come each day so long as he doesn't roar!

It turns out, a lion is very well suited for a library.  He makes a comfy backrest, he can help dust books on the top shelf, and the children love this gentle fictitious creature.  But what happens when Miss Merriweather has an accident and Lion is the only one there to get help?  Will he keep quiet and follow the rules of the library?

Copyrighted material - Images via BisforBooks

This book is a shining example of how sometimes it's okay to break the rules if you need help.  It also demonstrates friendship, love and respect.  (There's also an excellent lesson about apologizing, too!) Kevin Hawkes beautifully illustrates this picture book with a soft and realistic style that pages homage to the calmness and peace of a library itself.

As The Storybook Shoppe gears up to sell children's books online on November 1st, we are making weekly book recommendations available to you immediately on our blog.  This book comes highly recommended by Miss Nancy and her staff, and the entire O'Regan family.  Buy it now and support The Storybook Shoppe, Bluffton, SC's first children's bookstore!

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Library Lion

Head on over to Michelle Knudsen's Facebook page and check her out or visit her on the web to learn more about this fabulous author and teacher.  Check out The Storybook Shoppe on Facebook, too! 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Leonardo The Terrible Monster

If you aren't already familiar with Mo Willems, allow me to introduce to you to one of the most acclaimed children's author/illustrators of the 21st century.  Earning many Caldecott Honors and Medals, Willems started his career writing for Sesame Street, where he earned several Emmy's for his work.

But what's all the acclaim without bonafide backing from a toddler - the intended audience of Willems books? No shortage of support at The O'Regan household!  Miss Nancy at The Storybook Shoppe recommended Knuffle Bunny to us three years ago and it became a nightly favorite.

Today I'd like to share a lesser known book by Mo Willems and one of our family favorites -- Leonardo The Terrible Monster.  Leonardo is a terrible monster.  He can't scare anyone.  No matter how hard he tries, he fails because he simply isn't scary.  Even though he "researches" the most "scaredy cat kid in the whole world," nothing he does is scary.

Leonardo learns something far more important than being good at being scary. Spoiler alert! Instead of being a terrible monster, he becomes a wonderful friend to a boy who has had a terrible day (his brother's cockatoo pooped on his head! AND his stomach hurts!)


This book truly delights our family, page after page.  My daughter Molly memorized it when she was 2.5 years old.  Don't believe me? Here's one of many videos I have of Molly reading a Willems book.  She just adores his work!

Buy this book now from The Storybook Shoppe right here on this blog.  Normally $16.99, you can save 10% here - for $15.20 plus tax & $5 flat rate shipping.  By supporting a local book store, you are supporting a community and our children!  You'll love this one!

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