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

Summer Challenge Week Six: Wild Waters

Welcome to Wild Waters Week. It's week SIX of the Read, Discuss, Do! Summer Challenge, which means we are more than half way through this adventure. We hope you have been enjoying following along. And if you're just joining us, you're in for a treat!

My 18-month old grandson will hold a spray bottle and squirt himself in the face while laughing with glee. If your kids are anything like him, they probably enjoy a little fun in the water too! What better way to encourage summer play than to head to the pool or drag some water toys out of storage? We have some great water-themed book ideas for you to read, discuss, and pair with whatever fun water shenanigans your kids are into. 

Ideas for things to read:

  • Watersong by Tim McCanna, illustrated by Richard Smythe. This book is a feast for the ears and the eyes, as the story about a Fox seeking shelter from a storm is told mostly in onomatopoeia.
  • A River by Marc Martin. A lyrical book about a journey downriver in a little silver boat.
  • When the Rain Comes by Alma Fullerton, illustrated by Kim La Fave. Another lyrical, poetic book about a girl and an ox caught in a sudden storm.
  • Puddle Pug by Kim Norman, illustrated by Keika Yamaguchi. A fun story about puddles, pugs, pigs, and friendship!
For more water-themed book ideas, check out this book list!

Ideas for things to discuss:

  • In what ways do you use water every day? 
  • Where do you see water besides in the kitchen and bathroom?
  • Have you ever been outside while it was raining? Storming? What was it like?
  • Do you enjoy playing in the water? What is your favorite way to play with water?
  • What kinds of creatures live in water?

Ideas for things to do:

  • Take a walk or a drive to a local stream, river, lake, or other body of water. While you're there, look for animals that live in or around the water.
  • Have a water gun or water balloon battle. 
  • Run in the sprinkler or visit a splash park.
  • Do some water science experiments
  • Spend a day at the beach. 
  • Water the house plants or garden.
  • Paint with watercolors.
  • Make infused water. Here are some recipes you could try.
Are you reading water books and playing with water this week? Let us know in the comments. You can also share on social media with the hashtag #RDDSummerChallenge.