Book and Gift Pairings for the Holidays

Books make great gifts any time of year. But what's even better? Books paired with a items meant to extend the enjoyment of the story! This Read, Discuss, Do! Gift Guide pairs some of our favorite books with other gifts meant to help extend the fun of the story beyond the last page and maybe even encourage some new experiences. We hope you find some good ideas for readers and doers in your life on this list. For Babies and Toddlers Hey, Bruce! by Ryan T. Higgins. Pair this super fun (and funny) interactive picture book with a black bear plush, such as this First and Main 10-inch Bear .  Stomp, Wiggle, Clap, and Tap: My First Book of Dance  by Rachel Burk and illustrated by Alyssa De Asis, a book that encourages imaginative play. Pair this book with a musical gift such as a music box or instrument. Or maybe a dance costume! More books for active babies and toddlers For Little Makers The Thingity-Jig by Kathleen Doherty and illustrated by Kristyna Litten will be a sure hit with lit

A Read, Discuss, Do! National Poetry Month Celebration


by Rebecca J. Gomez

Will you celebrate National Poetry Month with us? Each Friday during April we will be highlighting a different form of poetry, sharing book recommendations and example poems, and encouraging people young and old to try their hand at writing different kinds of poetry. 

To get started, we are celebrating poetry in general. There are so many wonderful anthologies of poetry for children and children at heart. Here are a couple of recommendations for you to share with the young readers (and budding poets) in your life:

The Hutchinson Treasury of Children's Poetry, edited by Alison Sage

This book is full of a rich variety of poems, from classic nursery rhymes to more modern poems. There is truly something for everyone to love in this book! A couple my family's favorites from this book are "The Highwayman" by Alfred Noyes, "Do Not Disturb the Dinosaur" by Gina Douthwaite, and "Missing Persons" by Colin Thiele.

The Bill Martin Jr. Big Book of Poetry, compiled by Bill Martin Jr. and Michael Sampson. This is another fabulous collection of poetry that you shouldn't miss! Every poem is accompanied by vibrant illustrations by various artists. A favorite from this book is "The Wolf" by Georgia Roberts Durston.

Be sure to discuss your favorites from these books or any you have at home or find at the library. And then, have your kiddos try writing their own. Perhaps they could pick a favorite from the book and write a poem in a similar style or about a similar topic. 

Here's the schedule for the rest of April: 

Friday, April 8: Haiku

Friday, April 15: List poems

Friday, April 22: Concrete poetry

Friday, April 29: A special post for Poem in Your Pocket Day