Monday, August 8, 2011

PB 10 for 10 Oh, for the Love of Books!

I want to thank Cathy of Reflect and Refine and Mandy of Enjoy and Embrace Learning for creating and hosting this WONDERFUL event! Last year I read through all the PB 10 for 10 post feverishly and spent $$$ on great books! During the year my class and I enjoyed all the new books and found a few new favorites along the way, some of which you may see here in my first PB10 for 10 post!

 Ok, I am not stranded on a desert island, unfortunately fortunately. But I do have the pleasure of spending six hours a day five days a week with first graders. So having a collection of picture books that excites and motivates readers is a necessity!  Narrowing down my stack of 28 books (just a few that grabbed my attention on our Shelfari shelf) has been a challenge! After much thought and agonizing I finally arrived at 10! Ten books that grabbed not only me, but the kids too! These are the books that the kids couldn't get enough of, the ones whose language appeared in our writing and daily conversations, the books that made a difference in the lives of the readers in our room!

As soon as I heard about picture book 10 for 10 I knew Pssst! It's Me…the Bogeyman by Barbara Park would be in my list! I was introduced to this book by my good friend Molly when we were teaching kindergarten. Yes, kindergarten! The kids loved it and begged for more! I continue to read this book each year many, many, many times over! The kids love the onomatopoeias and rhythm of the language. "Want to know to a scary word? I'll give you five of them! Go…Get…Ready...For…Bed!" If you're worried this maybe too much for your kids, don't worry the ending is one loved by all siblings!

Cupcake by Charise Mericle Harper made the PB 10 for 10 for the positive message of being yourself and making the best of what you have. No one is the same and isn't that a great thing! This book was always in the hands of the reader's in our room, a true favorite of the first graders! I think young readers easily relate to poor vanilla cupcake and his feelings of inadequacy next to other fancy cupcakes.  When vanilla cupcake meets his new friend, Candle his days begin to brighten!  The last page leaves all the readers rolling on the floor! Listen to our VoiceThread to see why!

Have I Got a Book For You! by Melanie Watt was an instant hit in our room! Mr. Al Foxword is a persistent salesman working feverishly to sell the reader the very book you are reading. When the readers realize you are reading the book Mr. Foxword wants you buy the laughter begins (and you we as educators know they are inferring)! On the final page Mr. Foxword makes one last attempt to sell you this great book. This last ditch effort leaves some confused and others busting a gut full of giggles!
Shoe-La-La! by Karen Beaumont made the PB 10 for 10 for the great book conversations and the writing it inspired. Shoe-La-La was introduced to our class by a student. She checked the book out from the library and as she began to read and talk about the book friends were asking to read it next! She soon had her own reservation system all worked out. As the book grew in popularity we began to see many writing pieces inspired by Shoe -La-La! I was not quite sure why this book was so popular until one student created a VoiceThread. She asked her friends to share why they liked the book. That's when the conversation about a single word began... underwear. Any book mentioning underwear is a hit in an early childhood classroom!  This book was not a read aloud in my room last year it became popular from the authentic conversations of readers, the best recommendation possible!

Grumpy Cat by Britta Teckentrup made the list because it was magic for a young boy in our room. Sam came to open house proclaiming he did not know how to read and didn't need to learn really because he didn't like it either! I of course I was set right there that we would find the reader in him. He was a tough sell, he listened to books and pretended to read during the workshops and took home books every night. He continued this was until one day in December, he came to me and said, "Mrs. Frazier do you know why I take this book home every night? " I had notice he had taken home Grumpy Cat for 1 week straight! "I take it home because I love this book and I can read it all!" Sam was beaming, I was beaming and I gave Sam the book! I knew Sam was reader; he just needed the right book! I hope Sam is continuing to build his library with books he enjoys!

I Stink by Kate and Jim McMullan has been a favorite book in our room for years! Kids love the colorful illustrations, the personification and the onomatopoeias throughout the book. The idea of a trash truck having feelings is just too funny for young readers and wait till you see what the trash truck has for breakfast! I have used this book for crafting lessons, the opportunities in this book are priceless!
The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Janet Stevens has been instrumental in our classroom in helping to establish community. The Great Fuzz Frenzy is about a group of prairie dogs that are amazed by green fuzz that suddenly and mysteriously appears in their home. The dogs fight over the fuzz creating a FRENZY! After much fighting an unexpected leader steps up and helps the prairie dogs work together for the better of the community. The kids LOVE this book and easily connect classroom events to the events of the story. 
Birdie's Big Girl Shoes was a new find this year and what a great find it was! Birdie admires her mommy and wants more than anything to wear mommy's high heals. Birdie soon finds wearing mommies heals makes many fun things less fun! Birdie then finds that her barefoot are the just right shoes for her! I use this book to help parents and students understand the difference between easy, just right and challenging. Kids would often comment work was like Birdie's high heals and they needed more barefoot! How cute is that!?

A Small Brown Dog with a Wet Pink Nose by Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen and Linzie Hunter Was another new book for me this year and one I fell in love with instantly! Amelia want a small brown dog with a wet pink nose more than anything! She pretends to have a dog until one day her imaginary dog is "lost" what happens next warms every heart in the room! The illustrations of the imaginary dog are priceless, less really is more! 
Life-Size Zoo: From Tiny Rodents to Gigantic Elephants, An Actual Size Animal Encyclopedia by Kristin Earhart, Toyofumi Fukuda and Teruyuki Komiya was a gift to our class last year form a student. I was so excited to see the popularity of this book in our classroom! Not only did the kids love the non-fiction genre but they found the size of the photographs fun and easy to share with a reading buddy. Each page shares an animal profile and fun facts! The fun facts really capture the reader's attention. This book became so popular we had to create a book reserve system! 


  1. What a fun post! I love the VoiceThread of the sweet reflections of your students. I'm definitely checking out Cupcake, as well as Pssst! It's Me the Boogeyman, Have I got a Book for You, and Life Size. These look like awesome titles I have yet to read. Thanks for sharing your primary perspective!


  2. Like Denise, I love this post. Just last week in a training with secondary teachers, and a comment came up about higher order thinking. The teacher tried to use kindergarten as an example of a classroom where student could not be expected to do higher order thinking ... (as trainers, we just shook our head and talked about how they can) ... you voicethread PROVES it! What precious thoughts from sweet minds. Great list too! Added a few to my Amazon shopping cart!

  3. I Stink! is awesome. Makes for a fantastic read aloud and fits with the social studies curriculum around community. Great pick.
    Thanks for the list.
    Apples with Many Seeds

  4. Thanks for joining us, you did it. VT is connected to #pb10for10. I'm going to have to get that little brown dog with a pink nose book. It sounds adorable.

  5. I love Lifesize Zoo. I started that book with my boys as soon as they were old enough to sit up!! I need to get the Have I got a book for you? It looks great. Thanks for the recommendations.

  6. Deb,

    Okay, so I am just now catching up on all of the 10 for 10 posts - the beginning of the school year has been very busy, as always. I must say that I love, love, love The Great Fuzz Frenzy, too. It is such a fun book and can be used for so many purposes. I need to check out Shoe-La-La. I think I have some students this year who would love it. Thanks!