My almost two year old is really starting to enjoy story time . I love this because he will not only sit and "read" his own board books, but he likes to listen to bigger books that I read to him. JSL is fascinated with all things monkey. He will demand that we put the Wiggles monkey song on and he makes monkey sounds galore.
I must admit, when I selected this book I definitely judged a book by it’s cover. I knew that JSL liked monkies and the cover was absolutely adorable. The minute I pulled the book out, JSL came flying to me. He was making monkey noises and plopped onto my lap. My kindergarten kid heard the noise and also came to listen to the story.
When you start the story, you immediately meet Monkey. Monkey is playing and doing what monkies do. Monkey has a problem, though. Monkey can not find something he wants. Monkey is missing his "monkey-monkey-monkey nuts!"
While reading the story, you follow Monkey as he looks for his monkey-monkey-monkey nuts. With each page you turn, Monkey finds various rainforest friends including spotted leopards, crocs, frogs, insects, birds. Monkey also travels to different places in the rainforest like to fruit trees and even the top of the leafy canopy. Monkey gets more and more hungry and does not find his monkey-monkey-monkey nuts . . . until somebody saves the day!
Both of the boys thoroughly enjoyed the book. NHL really appreciated the rhyme and repetition within the story. He quickly joined in and was able to help me read the book. Even JSL was making his monkey sounds each time we turned the page and saw the beautiful colorfilled illustrations of Monkey’s rainforest world. I know that we will be looking for more of Cathy MacLennan’s books in the future because of how the amazing illustrations put you into the world with the characters.
JSL also likes to take Monkey Monkey Monkey and "read" it alone. Here he is enjoying some reading time on his own.
When growing up, I remember I adored books that had flaps. It was always exciting to go inside and explore all of the hidden wonders. My oldest son, NHL loves reading flap books as well. He is now able to explore them without damaging the books.
Recently, NHL and I read the book Go! Go! Go! by Roxie Munro. Right on the cover of the book, it states that there are "More than 70 flaps to uncover and discover!" Each and every page in this book is loaded with flaps and items to unwind and flip that help and tell the story.
NHL and I waited for a quiet time and stretched out on the floor to explore the book. As soon as we opened the book, NHL noticed that the information on the inside cover was even included in a flap. We immediately knew that this was going to be a fun experience. As you continue into the book, you are taken on a transportation adventure. Roxie Munro’s colorful illustrations, and interactive flaps quickly brought us into the world that she created.
Our first stop was a fire station where firefighters were getting ready. NHL liked lifting a flap to help some of them slide down the pole. Another flap made one of the people in the scene pick up a telephone. This allowed NHL and I to talk about things that go on in a fire house. He had a great time using his 5 year old imagination and playing out the scene sine there is no text on the page. As we continued on, the book a huge flap that allowed the fire truck to drive down the street, send out the ladder and put out a fire. NHL was in his glory because this one page required you to flip a section four times.
Next, Munro takes us to a Balloon Festival. Here you lift flaps to assist the people taking items out of their trucks and getting the balloons off the ground. Then you go to another page and the balloons all lift into the sky in a gorgeous display of artistic perspective.
Go! Go! Go! continues taking you to a horse race where you watch the horses getting ready and then they are off and racing. Next, there is a Deep-Sea Discovery Research Vessel that shows a diver exploring the ocean below. The last stop is a Pit Stop where members are assisting two cars in a race. The last page of the book opens up to reveal an amazing display of a raceway that is as wide as four pages. While exploring here you are able to make the cars race around the track.
NHL and I enjoyed this book. It was a great way for us to talk about different items that are on the "go" and discuss things that take place in these environments. Roxie Munro does an amazing job of capturing the details and allowing the reader to truly feel like they are in the scene while flipping and turning the flaps. I know that we will definitely be exploring more of the wonderful books by Roxie Munro in the future.
Story time is extremely important at our house. I have been reading to NHL and JSL since they were infants. Now that NHL is in kindergarten, he is also reading to us. Thanks to being a teacher, I love to actively engage NHL in the story. I know that this helps to expand his comprehension of the book. When we read, we talk about the characters, make predictions and then when finished we think about what we have read. Typically, we think about whether or not there are any connections to our lives. A new feature that I am going to do from time to time is going to be called Story time at Chez Angel. I will share books with you that I read with my boys.
Recently, we read the book Otto Grows Down by Michael Sussman. When you open the book you are immediately brought into Otto’s world thanks to the vibrant illustrations by Scott Magoon. Not only was NHL (5) intrigued by the story, JSL (22 months) also stuck around to hear more.
When you begin the story, you meet Otto, a six-year-old little boy that is celebrating his birthday. Like many other children his life has recently been turned upside down thanks to the addition of his baby sister. Even at his own birthday party, her presence spoiled everything. Otto gets so upset by her attention stealing that he makes a wish while blowing out his candles.
"I wish Anna was NEVER born!"
Ironically earlier in the day, NHL had made a similar declaration about his little brother. So it was nice timing. We were able to use this statement and the next events to discuss what was said.
Unlike NHL’s desire, something odd happens to Otto. Suddenly the candles on his cake lit up again. Then more bizarre items take place. His watch is moves backward and Otto rewraps his presents to give back to his friends. He finally realizes that time is going backward.
As you continue to read the book, you witness Otto’s life in rewind mode. While he is getting younger everything in life is opposite. There is mess-up time at school, his hair gets longer by the barber, he spits up his food, and Anna is brought back to the hospital. Otto thought that would be the end, but he continues to get younger and younger. Each year he wishes to be six again, but it does not happen. The reader watches as Otto takes a bath to make him dirty and then . . . I’ll leave the bathroom scene (a favorite of my 5 year old son) to your imagination.
While Otto grows down he starts to feel bad about his sister Anna. When he turns one again, he is also worried that he would soon disappear.
What happens to Otto? I am not going to ruin that for you, you have to read it for yourself.
I will tell you that we thoroughly enjoyed the book. Otto Grows Down helped to teach NHL more about consequences of your words/actions. Sure, we will not grow down if we wish it, but he definitely got the point. The humor of the book and the situations that Otto encounters help to teach children a very valuable lesson about sharing the spotlight with a sibling.
Go get yourself a copy of Otto Grows Down. Happy reading!