The Scoop - The Blog For Kids World

El Deafo by Cece Bell

El Deafo book cover: a bunny in white t-shirt and blue shorts is flying through the air among the clouds with a red cape trailing behind“With or without superpowers, I am still El Deafo --- and I am outraged!”

If you enjoyed Raina Telgemeier’s Smile, you will also love El Deafo.  With a similar funny and sweet style, this graphic novel tells the story of Cece from age four through fifth grade.  Because the voice is so authentic, you will know right away that this is Bell’s personal growing-up story.  Cece loses her hearing when she is four years old.  Well-intentioned adults and friends constantly interfere with what Cece wants most of all --- to just be treated like everyone else.  She deals with school and relationships (and develops her strong sense of self) by transmuting her embarrassing hearing devices into superpowers, thus imagining herself a superhero.  Her memoir shows us that we all share this superpower --- coping in the life we get.

This graphic novel memoir is recommended for grades 3 – 6 and older.  Just a few weeks ago, it received a 2015 Newbery Honor Award.

Find El Deafo in the Library.

Mary Jo, Kids World

Stuck Inside with the Winter Blues?

Messy Hands, Busy Minds, with photo of child's hand covered in pink paintHere are some fun activities you can do with your kids from our Messy Hands, Busy Minds program.

Almost all of the ingredients can be found in your house, but you might need to make a trip to the store to pick up a few of the materials. Quick tip: You might want to cover your tables with newspaper or plastic for any easy cleanup.

Homemade Flubber

Photograph of two hands squeezing purple flubber: it looks like a wet slimy version of play-dohDo your kids like all things squishy and mushy?

Homemade flubber is fun to squeeze and shape. The recipe we used came from Schelastic Education Center and worked very well. We made a few different colors.

The instructions are very easy and quick, and your kids will love getting messy.

Homemade Moonsand

Image of a pile of moonsand accented with a blue wizard, white unicorn, and a queen fingerpuppets. Moonsand is not only fun to make, but provides a lot of creative opportunities for you to build things. You might want to even add accessories depending upon what you make. Leafs, pebbles, cars, Lego minifigures are just some of the options you might want to consider. We used plastic finger puppets. Quick tip: Make sure any toys used to play in the Moonsand is washable.

Our recipe came from KiwiCrate's Cloud Dough, and provided tons of entertainment.

A Perfectly Messed-Up Story by Patrick McDonnell

A Perfectly Messed-Up Story book cover: a cartoon boy stands in center looking at large fingerprints, scribbles, and food stains all over the cover"Who would eat a jelly sandwich… while reading MY book?"

Little Louie’s dismayed look on the cover lets us know that something is amiss here.  Someone has modified his book title with crayon and spilled lots of icky things on it.  Inside, the story begins with Louie skipping along into his unknown “perfect story” until a blob of jelly falls onto the page.  He sniffs, licks and gets upset about it and is further aggravated by a blob of peanut butter --- “the chunky kind!” --- and a series of other book-wrecking messes.  Despite these setbacks, Louie realizes that we are still reading his story and declares that it is worth telling, “messes and all”.

The art is quite clever here; the offending “pb and j” look so real, you’ll feel compelled to wipe it up.  Nothing really happens in the story except for the interruptions.  It’s just a silly, fun read.  Readers ages 3 to 63 will enjoy this light picture book, especially if it is read aloud by one for the other.

Look for A Perfectly Messed-Up Story in the Library

Mary Jo, Kids World

There's a Mouse Hiding in This Book! by Benjamin Bird

There's a Mouse Hiding in the Book! book cover: head of a gray cat stares at a small brown mouse in corner of the book"We've cornered Jerry in his mousehole! ... Are you coming with me?"

Tom invites the reader on a wild chase through the pages of the book as he endeavors to catch that "pesky" rodent. This book's interactive dialouge encourages the reader to be active participant in the effort to nab the mouse.

Concept of a cat chasing a mouse is a universal one, therefore you do not have to be fans of the Tom and Jerry cartoons, or even know who they are, in order to enjoy this picture book. This short but highly amusing tale is perfect for those ages 2 to 9 years seeking funny stories with adult readers who do not mind acting a bit silly. Fans of interactive books such as Tap the Magic Tree by Matheson or Press Here by Tullet will also find this book worth reading.

Shake the book, blow on it, and see if you can't catch that mouse.

Find There's a Mouse Hiding in This Book in the Library.

Celeste, Kids World

Illustrated Norse Myths Retold by Alex Frith and Louie Stowell

Illustrated Norse Myths book cover: a small sea vessel is being attacked by a lrage green sea serpent"Before the world existed, there was only a place of fire, a place of ice and a great gap between them. There was no earth and no sky, no people or living creatures of any kind."

Giants, gods and dragons roam the world in this collection of Norse Myths that were told by the Vikings many, many years ago. Vibrant, powerful illustrations bring the stories of Thor, Loki and Asgard to life. Adventure, long journeys, epic battles and curses are woven throughout each of the myths in this book, just waiting for you to pick it up and come along for the ride!

Find Illustrated Norse Myths in the Library

Bridget, Kids World

It's Potty Time by Tracey Corderoy

Its potty time! book cover: a brown bear wearing an orange striped t-shirt sits on a red toliet and a small stuffed blue rabbit sits on a smaller yellow toliet. Both have underwear down by their ankles"You're a big bear now and big bears use potties!"

Baby Bear is a little reluctant when Mommy Bear says it's time to learn how to use the potty. Maybe his new pair of train underwear with help him get over his fear?

For little ones who are ready to be potty trained, they will enjoy reading about Baby Bear using the potty and just might be ready to tackle it on their own!

Find It's Potty Time! in Kids World
Find other Potty Training Materials in Kids World

Bridget, Kids World

When Lunch Fights Back: Wickedly Clever Animal Defenses by Rebecca L. Johnson

When Lunch Fights back book cover: close up image of a creature's face"In nature, good defenses can mean the difference between surviving a predator's attack and becoming its lunch."

Meet the Hagfish, the Hoopoe and other amazing creatures from around the world who have very special ways of defending themselves from predators. Loaded with full color photographs and scientific studies, Lunch Fights Back is a wonderful nonfiction addition to any animal lover's collection. An unexpected addition is the detailed list of books, websites and videos for more information about these fascinating animals. Perfect for fourth grade and up.

Find When Lunch Fights Back in the Library

Jennifer, Kids World

Monsters Vs. Kittens by Dani Jones

Monster vs Kittens book cover: an orange sits tabby faces the viewer, Behind the kitten is a green monster with horns and black hair whose fangs are showing in a smile as its yellow eyes look at the tabby"This is a monster. This is a kitten."

Let's compare the cute and cuddly kittens, with the big and smelly monsters. One is big, the other small. One clean, one messy. Could the monsters and kittens possibly have something in common? The answer may surprise you...

This short and sweet story about differences and friendship is hard to pass up. Delightfully lively illustrations capture your imagination and bring monsters and kittens to life. Toddlers especially will enjoy the dramatic and colorful pictures, highlighted by the bold and easy-to-read text.

Find Monsters Vs Kittens in the Library

Naomi, Kids World

He Has Shot the President!: April 14, 1865 : the Day John Wilkes Booth killed President Lincoln by Don Brown

He has shot the president book cover: resembles a front page newspaper headline. Pencil and watercoloring of lincoln looking over his shoulder towards a man coming through the opening in the curtains“Millions viewed the dead president at funeral stops or stood vigils for a glimpse of the slowly moving train that carried him home.  By the time Lincoln reached Springfield, one in four of all Americans had paid their respects.”

Did you know that Booth had several accomplices?  That there were supposed to be three simultaneous murders but two didn’t happen?  Brown conveys more facts and details in this transitional chapter book than most other history books written for kids.  It covers the full sequence of events beginning with the radical Confederates’ hard feelings at the end of the Civil War through Booth’s dramatic manhunt and capture.

Readers in grades 3 – 6 will enjoy learning more about this important historic event through Brown’s accessible text and effective illustrations, whether they are young history buffs or older reluctant readers.  Warning: this telling depicts violence (hatred, the shooting, a stabbing).  If you like Brown’s style as much as I do, check out his other books as well!

Look for He Has Shot the President! in the Library

Mary Jo, Kids World

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