Picture Book Pair for a Fun Fall Story Time

by Rebecca J. Gomez Pairing two or more picture books with similar themes can open up a world of discussion possibilities, and those discussions are great ways to connect with your children or students. It can be fascinating to see how different authors and illustrators approach different topics and themes. Pairing books with similar themes during story time will help children learn that everyone sees the world a little differently, and it's good to see other people's perspectives. Read : Leaves by David Ezra Stein and The Leaf Thief by Alice Hemming, illustrated by Nicola Slater Discuss :  What is the main theme in each of these stories? How are these two books different? How are they similar? What were Bear and Squirrel both confused about?  Have you ever been confused or curious about something in nature? Talk about it! What is fall like where you live? Do you see leaves changing, then falling from the trees?  What other books about fall or leaves have you read? Are any of

YOU'RE THE HUGS TO MY KISSES Review and Story Time Activity

by Laura Sassi

You’re the Hugs to my Kisses (Zonderkidz, 2022), written by Barbara Herndon with illustrations by Diane Ewen, is an engaging choice for Valentine’s Day or any time of year. Full of clever rhymes that celebrate the joy of loving others and embracing the special connections loved ones share, Barbara’s bouncy text is a delight to read. Diane Ewan’s illustrations stand out for their colorful and diverse cast of people of all ages enjoying each others’ company in various ways.

Read: You’re the Hugs to my Kisses by Barbara Herndon and Diane Ewen

  • What made this book fun to read?
  • What was your favorite “you’re the ______ to my _____” description?  Why was it your favorite?
  • Who are some special people in your life?
  • How would you describe them using the “you’re the ______ to my _____” format?

Do: Make your own “You’re the  _____ to my ______” postcards!

You will need: 

sturdy paper cut to postcard size (4”x6”)
markers, crayons
address of special person for mailing
postcard stamp

  1. Inspired by the story, brainstorm a batch of your own “you’re the ____ to my ____” descriptions. Ex: “You’re the sparkle to my lights”, “You’re the salsa to my tacos”, “”You’re the frosting to my cake” etc.
  2. Taking a blank postcard, write the one that best matches your special person on one side of the card. Then illustrate it using markers or crayons.
  3. On the other side, write a short note telling your special person why they are special to you. 
  4. Address the card. Then add a stamp and pop it in the mail!