Sunday, July 6, 2014

Some of My Favorite Books: Blogging Challenge Day 7

New favorite! 

Day 7: Favorite books as an adult and/or child.

As an adult, much of what I read is nonfiction.  I tend to read magazines, articles and newspapers, as well as books that relate to my field in education.  I find them very interesting and enjoy keeping abreast of the shifts out in the educational world, but I can't say they are necessarily "fun" reads.  

Since the topic is “favorite books”, I’m going to share some of the mindless, undemanding and entertaining books I enjoy when I actually get a chance to read for pure fun.  I'll also be sharing some favorites of my own kids, as well as a few titles I use in the classroom with my students. 

Have you ever heard of Sophie Kinsella?  She's one of my favorite fiction writers.  I've read most of her books, pre-twins, but my most-liked series by her is the Shopaholic Series.  There are five titles in this series and each one is funnier than the next.  I also loved another novel of hers called The Undomestic Goddess with a different main character.  The novel covers are below.

Sophie Kinsella's newest novel, Shopaholic to the Stars, comes out in August of 2014.  I'm looking forward to it hitting the shelves! 

In regards to children’s books when I was growing up, I can’t really recall any specific titles of books I loved reading over and over.  I do remember loving Holly Hobby and Strawberry Shortcake books growing up, but no specific titles.   Do the pictures below look familiar to anyone out there?

Holly Hobby
Strawberry Shortcake
However, my mother tells me I used to love Goodnight Moon as well as anything written by Dr. Seuss because of the silly illustrations and funny rhymes.  My kids do, too.

Now that I have my own children, I have new favorites.  Snatchabook by Helen and Thomas Dochery is a book I purchased in the Spring at our school's Scholastic Book Fair.  My kids are smitten with it, so we read about Eliza Brown on almost a daily basis.  She's the rabbit that solves the mystery of the Snatchabook.  It's a story for ages 3 and up, but if you click here, you can get an Educator's Guide, as well as an Activity kit that can be used in Kindergarten and First Grade.  It's a fun read. :)

Every...single...night we read Pinkalicious and Purplicious by Victoria and Elizabeth Kann.  There are many more titles about Pinkalicious and her crazy adventures, but these two are my children's favorites.  Alliteration is all over the pages of these books along with figurative language

My face was pink, my hands were pink and my belly was the color of a sunset.
Soon I was surrounded by bees, butterflies, and birds.
He was green with envy.
Take a peek at all of the alliteration on this page!
 Pinkalicious has the blues. 
Rumble in the Jungle and Down by the Station are two of many my son enjoys listening to on a daily basis.  These books are great for building vocabulary and listening for rhyming words. If you are looking for a book full of silly poems about jungle animals, Rumble in the Jungle is a great one, while Down by the Station is great for following a pattern while reading.

There are tons of Llama, Llama books by Anna Dewdney out there on the shelves, but my kids just light up for Llama, Llama Mad at Mama. I'm not going to take it personally, either, because I don't feel they're always mad at me. ;)  These books have wonderful illustrations that show loads of facial expressions and fun scenarios with plenty of rhyme. If you're helping little ones learn social skills, the Llama, Llama books are useful. 

My all-time favorites for the classroom are by Chris Van Allsburg.  Every single book he's written is phenomenal, in my opinion.  There are so many literary skills that can be enhanced through his books, including making predictions, drawing conclusions, making inferences, building vocabulary, writing extensions, reading closely, etc.   The list goes on and on, but here are a few of my favorite titles by Van Allsburg! 

Great for Environmental Awareness.
Open-ended types of pictures for writing extensions.
A stranger with special powers...
Twist ending!!
The world seen through an ant's "lense" (Close Reading).
Great around Halloween time- wonderful black and white illustrations.

In regards to nonfiction, there are many titles out there that are great resources for kids.  However, the one I read most often with my own children is ABC ZooBorns by Andrew Bleimen.  This book is also from our school's Scholastic Book Fair in the Spring.  I adore the photographs, as well as take pleasure in the ABC review for the little ones.  Readers can learn about doles, giraffes, vicunas, tapirs, wombats, nyalas, marmosets and more! 

Well, there you go!  A few of my favorites I wanted to share with the blogging community, even though I have a zillion more.  It was difficult for me to STOP sharing titles.  More to come throughout the school year along with activities and/or I use strategies with the various books. 

So long for now! 


  1. One thing I love is that although I recognize (and love) some of the books you posted, I don't recognize others. This opens new doors for me and I can discover new great and wonderful books because you shared them! Thanks!

    1. Then I'm glad I shared! Thanks for stopping by, Carrie. :)

  2. I have never heard of Sophie Kinsell before, so I will have to check her out. Now, the children's books, I recognized them all!!!! I remember finding the book The Widow's Broom in college. Chris Van Allsburg is one of my favorite children's authors.

  3. Hobby Lobby and Strawberry Shortcake! I haven't thought of them in years! Thanks for the memories.

    Mrs. Bartel’s School Family

    1. Well, I must say one of my favorite stores is Hobby Lobby. You must know it. Lol. That made me smile. Holly Hobby was fun back in the days, right?

  4. I love Two Bad Ants but I guess I need to read more of Chris Van Allsburg since you mention all those titles! Thanks for sharing - there is new books on here for me, too! :-)

    1. Two Bad Ants is certainly a good one. I really, really love The Sweetest Fig. Great ending. ;)

  5. As a Grandma, I appreciate the photos you posted. My granddaughter loves animals so I have noted some future favorites!

    1. I'm glad I could help. ;) I'm in summer-mode with my little ones, hence the post has a majority of PreK-1 books. I did throw in a few titles by Chris Van Allsburg that could relate to older grades, though. Lol :)

  6. I. AM. SO. EXCITED. I had no idea a new Shopaholic book was coming out in August!!! I love those books. Yippee!!!
    One of my favorite children's books is Two Bad Ants. What a great story.
    Fantastic post!

  7. Yay! Someone else out there loves the Shopahlic books, too! :-D I wasn't too thrilled with the movie starring Isla Fisher because I pictured the main character very differently in my head. ;)


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