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

12 MORE Story Time Activities that You Can Do Anywhere

by Rebecca J. Gomez

The focus here at Read, Discuss, Do! is to help people extend the magic of story time beyond the last page, and what better way to do that than to share story time activities that can be done anywhere, any time, and without any supplies besides a book and your brains? Last fall we shared 12 Story Time Ideas that You Can Do Anywhere. Today, we've got 12 more! 

Whether you are on a road trip, in a waiting room, or snuggled in bed, some of these story time ideas are sure to work for you.

1. After reading and discussing the story, ask "what if" questions about the plot and characters.

2. Have a child summarize the story for you. 

3. Brainstorm ideas for other stories based on the characters.

4. Compare and contrast the book's characters with people you know.

5. For a group of kids that can read independently, re-read the book "readers' theater" style.

6. Choose an illustration from the book and make up a new story based on what is happening in the picture.

7. Play "I Spy" with one of the book's spreads. An especially detailed illustration would work best for this.

8. Take a look at your surroundings and find one item that relates to the story.

9. Play "20 Questions" with characters and objects from the book.

10. For younger readers, go through the illustrations and have them describe characters' emotions based on the facial expressions.

11. Imagine it's one of the characters' birthdays. Plan a pretend party for them!

12. Play the alphabet game, picture book edition! Challenge kiddos to find a word or picture for each letter of the alphabet.

Have a happy story time!