4 Fun & Simple Activities/Games That will Teach Kids about Germs

germs activities

As adults, we most likely want  to prevent children from getting sick. It disturbs their playtime and they often look helpless lying in bed during an illness. One way to keep kids healthy is to teach them how to prevent germs.

I have provided 4 FUN and SIMPLE activities that will complete this mission! These activities will have your child wanting to help with chores and pinpoint the importance of good hygiene.

Want More Games? Here is a Video on 6 Games/Activities for Kids and Parents That Will Make Your Morning Routine Efficient!

Let’s get started by answering basic questions about germs/microbes.

How are germs spread by hands?

 When you cough or sneeze, this is the lungs’ way of doing their job to force bad germs/microbes out. Some people cough in their hands if they don’t have a tissue.  Coughing in your hands leads to germs being left there. When you touch anything such as a doorknob, pen, sink, utensils, or someone else’s hand, you will spread germs.

How can you prevent germs from spreading?

 There are good and bad germs. You want to keep good germs and get rid of bad germs. Good germs can help make vitamins that your body needs. Foods that increase good bacteria or germs are asparagus, beans, spinach, and bananas.

One way to prevent bad germs from spreading is to cough or sneeze into a tissue or elbow. Furthermore, if you don’t cover up at all while sneezing and coughing, the germs can go really far. Some germs can travel 100 miles (160km) per hour and spread over 100,000 more.

Another way to prevent germs is to wash your hands frequently with soap. Soap helps to remove dirt and microbes. Hand washing should occur before eating, after using the bathroom, when playtime is complete, after using public transportation, or visiting public places.

How can kids prevent germs?

 Germs can enter the body through the mouth, nose, breaks in the skin, eyes and genitals (privates). Below are 5 ways to prevent germs…

  1. Using tissues to wipe and blow your nose.
  2. Staying home from school when you are sick.
  3. Keep hands out of mouth.
  4. Do not use other’s forks, spoons, or drink from the same cup. 
  5. Teach kids to wash their hands.

 

How do you teach a child to wash their hands?

Have kids do the following steps to wash their hands…

  1. Wet their hands with warm or cold water.
  2. Use soap to lather their hands while singing “Happy Birthday” twice.
  3. Scrub between fingers, on the backs of hands, and under nails.
  4. Rinse well and dry with a clean towel.

 Tip: Create a colorful chart with the steps above and display in all bathrooms.

Here’s a Great Book that Teaches Kids about Germs

Have you ever asked a child to wash their hands and they asked “Why?” The story, Do not lick this book* by Idan Ben-Barak and Julian Frost, provides a fun and engaging way to answer this question.

How this Book makes Learning about Germs Fun!

This book is about an oval shaped microbe character named Min, who teaches children about germs, by going on an adventure. Min begins her journey ON the book and involves readers by asking them to take her various places.

For example, the book says “Let’s take Min on an adventure! See the circle on the next page? That’s where Min lives. Touch the circle with your finger to pick her up. Min is now on your finger!”

Taking your Child on a Germ Journey

During Min’s travels, she meets friends and takes them along the way. Somehow Min and Rae end up on the reader’s shirt! At each stop, the authors show children a microscopic view of their destination. Additionally, commentary from other microbes explain how they function. While Min and Rae on are the reader’s shirt, one microbe says “Can you give me a hand spreading this dirt around?” Another microbe says “We’re making this shirt smell.”

While Min and friends are on the reader’s belly button, one microbe asks, “Did I tell you about the time soap got all the way in here? Another microbe replies “I don’t like scary stories!” This book teaches children the importance of brushing their teeth, washing clothes, and taking a bath in a humorous manner.

At the end, the authors show readers what microbes really look like and where they can be found.

Let’s apply it with 4 FUN Activities!

 Use the activities below to….

  1. Teach your Child about germs.
  2. Encourage them to help with chores.
  3. Promote Hygiene and Self-Care.

 

I do these activities with my son and he loves it!

Create the Germ/Microbe

  1. Have your child draw a germ/microbe.
  2. Tell the child to give the microbe a name.
  3. Have your child draw the microbe a friend and name it.
  4. Tell your child the microbe is going to travel to three places…
    • Their clothes
    • On their teeth
    • On their hands
  5. Tell your child you are going to get rid of the germs by doing the next three activities.

Laundry

  1. Explain to children that microbes get on our clothes and make them dirty and stinky.
  2. While doing laundry have your child help you put the clothes in the dryer and washing machine.
  3. While your child is handling the clothes say the following…
    • “Let’s get the Microbes off the clothes by putting them in washing machine.
  4. Make it fun and urgent by saying the following…
    • “Oh no! The microbes are multiplying let’s put them in the washing machine quickly!
    • Make it into a race against the Microbes.

Brushing Teeth

  1. Explain to children that microbes get on our teeth and cause tooth decay and cavities.
  2. Explain that cavities are holes in your teeth.
  3. The microbes also cause your breathe to stink.
  4. These microbes love sugars like candy.
  5. In order to get them off, they must floss and brush their teeth.
  6. While your child is brushing their teeth say the following..
    • “Hurry Hurry, the microbes are running because they know we are about to brush your teeth!
    • Let’s brush your teeth to remove them now!”
    • I hear the microbes saying, “No, No don’t brush your teeth! We don’t like the smell of toothpaste!”
  7. When your child is rinsing their mouth and spitting, say the following…
    • “The microbes are down the drain and they are yelling “No, No!”

Washing Hands

  1. Explain to children that microbes get on our hands as we touch various things like the doorknob and sink.
  2. We often touch our noses, mouths, and eyes allowing microbes to come into our bodies and make us sick.
  3. We need to wash our hands to decrease our chances of getting sick.
  4. While your child is washing their hands, laugh and say the following…
    • “We are going to get those microbes by washing our hands with soap!”
    • “The microbes are scared of soap so let’s keep scrubbing!”
  5. When your child is rinsing their hands, say the following…
    • “The microbes are down the drain and they are yelling “No, No!”
    • “Yes! We conquered the microbes!”

When I forget to do these activities, my son usually asks me to play the Microbe Games!

Get creative with your children on how to remove microbes!

Happy Cleaning!

 

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How Dads Can Help Children Become Better Readers

How Dads Can Help Children Become Better Readers

The Benefit of Dads Reading Aloud to Their Kids

I remember going to the local library and listening to an Education Expert lecture about the importance of reading aloud to your children. This expert said children whose dads read to them are more likely to become avid readers in adulthood.  One of the reasons is men’s lower voices tend to command more attention and sometimes can be better heard from children due to the lower frequency of the sound wave. For example, people with slight hearing loss find it easier to hear men’s voices than women and children’s voices.  Also, a Harvard University study found that dads reading bedtime stories is better for children’s language development.

How Can Dads Help a Child Become a Better Reader?

Dads should read aloud to their child frequently. Also, children can observe how their dad enunciates words and his reading rhythm. Furthermore,  do hands-on activities where the child can experience the words in the book. For example, if the child is reading about animals on Wednesday, take the book with you to the zoo on Saturday. Show the child the animals in the book while observing them at the zoo. This allows the child to see the words and experience it simultaneously.

Below is a video of Read Aloud Strategies to Make Books Fun For Kids!

How do Books Help Children’s Development?

Children will learn life skills through experience. However, books can help a child’s development because they see how book characters solve problems and handle difficult situations. This is why it’s important for dads to read various types of books frequently to their children. The child receives a male’s perspective on how to handle issues through discussion encouraged from reading books. Also dads are given the opportunity to discuss a variety of topics through books which can range from friendship to feelings and emotion.

A Fun Book Dads Can Read to Children

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using the links.

These reasons, along with others, is why I like to find books where a dad is one of the main characters. I found a book, Be Glad Your Dad Is Not an Octopus! by Matthew Logelin, Sara Jensen, and Jared Chapman, that is entertaining and educational.

Why We Like This Book

Along with the benefit of dads reading aloud, this book highlights the positive aspects of fathers such as telling funny stories or singing silly songs. It also stresses the negative side of dads, from a kid’s perspective, like being bossy or grouchy. Sometimes kids wish their dad’s were someone else, but the author warns children to be careful what they wish for because it be could way worse.

The book gives humorous scenarios of how it could be worse. One page reads, “Be glad your dad is not a tortoise because everything would take forever.” Another example is “Be glad your dad is not a Dung Beetle, because he would pile poop in your room, (Seriously, that would be really gross.)”

Fun Educational Components of the Book

The animals discussed in this book provide children with insight on how they function. At the end, the author gives more information about each animal in the book. When dung beetles pile poop and eat it, they help rid the earth of it. If they didn’t, the whole world would be covered in it!

My husband and son had a great time reading this book! My son found this funny and entertaining!!!

Fun Ideas to Supplement Book

Take it a step further and do a fun activity to supplement this book. Below are some ideas…

  1. Role play a tortoise and do everything around the house slowly.
  2. Get a balled up brown sock, representing poop, and leave it beside your child’s bed.
    • Leave a note saying “Daddy the Dung Beetle left this poop for you!”

Get this book and let your child laugh and learn while dad reads.

P.S. If dad is not present, get other family members and friends, like granddads, uncles, and mentors, to read to your child.

Happy Reading!

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Holiday Laugh-Out-Loud Jokes for Kids

HolidayLaughOut LoudJokesForKids

Wouldn’t it be great for your family to have access to Laugh-Out-Loud Jokes for Kids this holiday?

This time of the year promotes relaxation, reminiscing, and laughter with family. Below, I have provided you with jokes to share with your loved ones after you all have opened your presents!

Children and adults will have a great time guessing the answers.

These jokes came from the book The Complete Laugh-Out-Laugh Holiday Jokes for Kids by Rob Elliott. This book is filled with jokes for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. If you want more jokes,  get his book!

Let’s get started!

Also, download our FREE Printable Holiday Card so your children can showcase their artwork to family and friends this Holiday Season!

  1. What do snowmen eat for Lunch?

    • Brrrr-itos
  2. What is a Christmas tree’s least favorite month of the year?

    • Sep-timber
  3. What did Frosty wear to the wedding?

    • His snowsuit
  4. Why was Santa dressed up?

    • He was going to the snowball
  5. Why do snowmen always change their minds?

    • Because they are flaky!
  6. What does Santa give Rudoph when he has bad breath?

    • Orna-mints
  7. Who bring Christmas presents to a shark?

    • Santa Jaws
  8. What did the gingerbread man do when he sprained his ankle?

    • He iced it.
  9. What do grumpy sheep say during the holidays?

    • “Baa, baa, humbug.”
  10. Why do elves go to school?

    • To learn the elf-abet
  11. Why did the math teacher get sick after Christmas dinner?

    • He had too much pi.
  12. What does an elf listen to on the radio?

    • wrap music
  13. How do snow spend their Christmas vacations?

    • Chilling out
  14. What does Santa give his reindeer for a stomach ache?

    • Elk-a-Seltzer
  15. Why didn’t the rope get any presents?

    • Because it was knotty
  16. What did Mrs. Claus say to Rudolph when he was grump?

    • “You need to lighten up!”
  17. What is something you can throw during the holidays but catch?

    • A Christmas Party
  18. Why was the cat afraid to climb the Christmas tree?

    • It was scared of the bark.
  19. Why did the baker give everybody free cookies for  Christmas?

    • Because he had a lot of dough!
  20. What is a skunk’s favorite Christmas song?

    • “Jungle Smells”

 

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5 Reading Games/Activities For Kids

5. reading games png

Want More Games? Here is a Video on 6 Games/Activities for Kids and Parents That Will Make Your Morning Routine Efficient!

Infants Can Read?          baby smiling

Did you know that children show signs of reading as infants? Reading is all about discovering meaning and this is what your baby did  when they first responded to your smile.

Sometimes discovering meaning can be lost with traditional ISOLATED learning methods such letter sounds and worksheets. Reading should follow the natural way that children learn which is through a variety of experiences and following their interests.

Following Your Child’s Interest

If children are offered reading material that follow their interests, then they will want to seek meaning from words. From this desire, they will learn word recognition and phonics skills.

Children learn best from discoveries they make from exploring the world around them. They gather conclusions from their experimentations and creative play. For example, in water play, they learn about volume, capacity, and the properties of water as they pour it cup to cup.

What You Can Do As a Parent

Your job as the parent is to describe their play and provide them with language.  During water play, use descriptive words such as wet, splash, ripples, warm, and cool.  Then expose them to similar words by reading books dealing with water such Splish, Splash Ducky by Lucy Cousins or Spot Goes to the Swimming Pool by Eric Hill.  This is the beginnings of  you making connections with language and play.

The games/activities provided below will  help you make more connections with words through creative play.

Let’s Get Started!

Change the Story

Children should be provided opportunities to apply knowledge from books through imaginative play. Below is a way to stimulate your child’s ability to problem solve, sort information, and develop new ideas through creative-thinking questions. Below is how to do it…

  1. Read a story to your child.
  2. Ensure your child is familiar with the story.
    • You may have to read the story multiple times to your child.
  3. Have your child change the ending.
  4. They may communicate their version of the ending through the following…
    • Drawing a picture
    • Creating a sculpture with Playdoh or Clay
    • Creating a dance
    • Role playing with props
    • Simply telling the story

play doh

Clues from the Story

The following activity will develop your child’s listening skills. It is also great for reading comprehension and learning new vocabulary.

  1. Read a story to your child.
  2. Ensure your child is familiar with the story.
    • You may have to read the story multiple times to your child.
  3. Gather clues from the story you have read. Clues from the story can include…
    • Characters
    • Setting – where the story took place.
    • The conflict or problem in the story.
    • The story’s resolution
    • Basically anything in the story
  4. Let your child guess what you are thinking from the story with the clues you give them.
  5. Use descriptive words to describe your clue such as…
    • “I’m thinking of a humongous animal with a large trunk.”
    • Then let your child give you the answer which is elephant.
  6. Now let your child think of something and give you clues.
  7. Another variation of this game is to have your child get clues by asking you yes/no questions about a mystery item.
    • “Is it large?
    • “Does it make a loud noise”

Treasure Hunt   treasure hunt

This game is great for reading comprehension. It also helps your child learn how print and pictures carry meaning.

  1. Read a story to your child.
  2. Ensure your child is familiar with the story.
    • You may have to read the story multiple times to your child.
  3. Tell your child they are going to do a treasure hunt.
  4. Find one vocabulary word, item, or character from the story.
  5. If you have the item in your home, you may use it for the hunt.
  6. If you don’t have the item, you may draw a picture and briefly describe it on separate piece of paper.
  7. Hide the item in your home.
  8. Leave a series of notes or pictures to help your child find the item.
    • For example, write “Go to the dining room table” or draw a picture of the  dining room table.
    • On the dining room table, have another note ready stating, “Go to your bedroom” or draw the child’s bedroom.
  9. Your child will continue finding and following instructions on notes or drawings until he/she locates the item from the story.
  10. Once your child has found the item, ask them to identify the item and how it fits in the story.

Charades

You will need more than one child for this game. This game is great for reading comprehension and promotes in-depth learning. In-depth learning is when you learn about something in various ways. Charades will allow your child to learn words through physical activities, reading, and application (identifying where it fits in the story)

  1. Read a story to your child.
  2. Ensure your child is familiar with the story.
    • You may have to read it multiple times to your child.
  3. Write vocabulary words or characters from the story on index cards or paper.
  4. Players will take turns picking these cards from a plastic bag and acting them out.
  5. The other players will guess the word.
  6. Once the word is identified, then have the child identify where the word fits in the story.
  7. Another variation of this game is to have the player draw a picture of the word while the other players guess the word.

Spy a Word

  1. Read a story to your child.
  2. Ensure your child is familiar with the story.
    • You may have to read it multiple times to your child.
  3. Omit a word and let your child fill in the blanks.
  4. Let’s say you read a story where a mouse is trying to find cheese.
  5. You say “In the story, the mouse is trying to find……
  6. Let your child say “cheese.”
  7. Keep stating the plot of the story and let your child fill in the blanks.
  8. Another variation of this game is to fill in the blanks with silly words and let your child correct you.
  9. You state  “In the story, the mouse is trying to find a cat to eat him.
  10. Let your child correct you with the word “cheese.”

black father reading to son

Have Fun Reading and Playing!

Don’t forget to sign up for our FREE course on How to Teach the Alphabet in a Fun Way!

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170 Children’s Books with Black Characters

170 children's books with black characters

I love reading good children’s books with my three-year-son and recommending them to my friends who are mothers. When I recently sent them a book recommendation, one mom requested books with black characters.

This mom and I have black children and it is important for us to have books with characters that resemble them. It helps our children make a connection with the characters, plot, and setting.

Suddenly I started creating a list of books we have read with black characters. At first, I thought the list would consist of 25 books. However, as I began writing, it went from 25, 50, 75, 100, 125, 150, and then finally to 170 books!

Some of these books I have read to my son, and then some he read independently.

Below is a video of Reading Games/Activities for Kids

Read these books below and make them come alive to your children.

Let’s get started! 

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using the links.

1. Max Goes to the Barber by Adria F. Klein/Mernie Gallagher-Cole

  • This book explores a boy’s visit to the barber as he gets his hair cut and combed.

2. Max Goes to the Dentist by Adria F. Klein/Mernie Gallagher-Cole

  •  This book describes what a trip to the dentist entails. As a result, Max learns how to take proper care of this teeth.

3. Max Goes to School by Adria F. Klein/Mernie Gallagher-Cole

  • Learn about Max’s day at school, as he listens to a story, draws a picture, plays on the playground, and eats lunch.

4. Max Goes to the Library by Adria F. Klein/ Mernie Gallagher-Cole

  • Max, who loves to read, discovers all the services available to him during a visit to the library.

5. Max Goes to the Zoo by Adria Klein/Mernie Gallagher-Cole

  • Max and his friend, Lily, spend a day exploring the zoo. Read this book and find out what animals they see.

6. Lola at the Library by Anna McQuinn/Rosaline Beardshaw

  • Lola and her mom go to the library weekly. Find out what fun she has and the friends she meets.

7. The Snowy Day by Erza Jack Keats

  • This work reveals the adventures of a little boy in the city on a very snowy day.

8. Peter’s Chair by Erza Jack Keats

  • Learn how Peter’s world is turned upside down with the arrival of a new baby sister.

9. Goggles by Erza Jack Keats

  • Peter and his friend find motorcycle goggles. Find out what happens when the older boys from the neighborhood want the goggles.

10. Pet Show by Erza Jack Keats

  • Archie faces a dilemma  when he wants to enter a pet show but his cat runs away. Read how he uses fast thinking to solve his problem.

11. Whistle for Willie by Erza Jack Keats

  • Learn about Peter, on a hot summer day, who wants to whistle for his dog, Willie.

12. Ten, Nine, Eight by Molly Bang

  • This book is about bedtime fun and a countdown to pleasant dreams.

13. Whose Toes are Those by Jabari Asim/LeUyen Pham

  • Kids will enjoy this interactive book that celebrates the game, This Little Piggy.

14. I Am So Brave by Stephen Krensky/Sara Gillingham

  • Discover how this boy grows out of toddlerhood with courage and success!

15. I Know A lot by Stephen Krensky/Sara Gillingham

  • Discover how this girl grows out of toddlerhood with new knowledge to share!

16. Shades of Black: A Celebration of our Children by Sandra L. Pinkney/Miles Pinkney

  • This book explores the various skin tones, hair texture, and eye color of black children.

17. Shanna’s Teacher Show by Jean Marzollo/Shane W. Evans

  • Today Shanna is playing a teacher who knows how to make learning fun! She also teaches kids creativity and how to problem solve.

18. God Bless the Child by Billie Holiday/Arthur Herzog, Jr.

  • This book is based off the song by Billie Holiday, “God Bless the Child.”

19. Harper Counts Her Blessings by Kristi Guillory Reid/Jerry Craft

  • This book shows children the importance of taking the time each day as a family to reflect upon their blessings and to thank God.

20. Peek a Boo Morning by Rachel Isadora

  • A toddler plays a game of peekaboo with her family.

My son reading a book.

21. Peek a Boo Bedtime by Rachel Isadora

  • A fun-loving toddler delights in entertaining his family, friends, and puppy with his special game throughout the day.

22. Green Pants by Kenneth Kraegel

  • Jameson only wears green pants. When he wears green pants, he can do anything. If he wants to be in his cousin’s wedding, he is required to wear a tuxedo, with black pants. What will he do?

23. Brown Boy Brown Boy What Can you Be by Ameshia Arthur

  • Read about Matthew as he considers all the things he can accomplish and the careers he can do.

24. Dad Who Will I Be? by G. Todd Taylor/Jorge Hernandez

  • This book inspires, encourages, and educates young readers to be great by introducing them to heroes of color from a number of different professions.

25. Full Full Full of Love by Trish Cooke/Paul Howard

  • For the youngest member of an extended family, Sunday dinner
    at Grannie’s can be full of hugs and kisses, tasty dishes, happy faces, and love. This book has a special focus on the bond between little Jay Jay and his grannie.

26. I Look Up to Michelle Obama by Anna Membrino/Fatti Burke

  • This board book reveals Michelle Obama’s excellent qualities with text designed to share and read aloud.

27. Mary had a Little Glam by Tammi Sauer/Vanessa Brantley-Newton

  • This little Mary has swag! In this fun take on Mother Goose, fashionable Mary helps childhood’s characters go glam.

28. Dream Big, Little One by Vashi Harrison

  • This book showcases black women who changed the world.

29. Marvelous Me: Inside and Out by Lisa Bullard/Brandon Reibeling

  • There is no one else quite like Alex as he is one of a kind. This book will encourage children to embrace the things that make them unique.

30. Baby Dance by Ann Taylor/Majorie van Heerden

  • For the babies who respond to music and movement, this work provides a playful poem that has a father and child dancing.

31. Milo’s Museum by Zetta Elliott/Purple Wong

  • Milo is excited about her class trip to the museum.  However, Milo realizes that the people from her community are missing from the museum. Milo takes matters into her own hands and opens her own museum!

32. Please, Baby, Please by Spike Lee/Tonya Lewis Lee

  • This book explores the thrills of bringing up a baby! Families everywhere will want to share in these precious moments again and again.

33. Leo Loves Baby Time by Anna McQuinn/Ruth Hearson

  • On Wednesdays, Leo and his mom go to Baby Time, where he plays peek-a-boo, sings, and meets new friends.

34. Leo Can Swim by Anna McQuinn/Ruth Hearson

  • Leo and Daddy go to swim class where they kick, bounce, and dive like little fish.

35. Pretty Brown Face by Andrea Davis Pinkney/Brian Pinkney

  •  Join the fun as a baby boy discovers the unique features on his face. This board book also celebrates the loving closeness of an African American family.

36. I Love My Hair by Natasha Anatasia Tarpley/E.B. Lewis

  • Keyana discovers the beauty and magic of her special hair, encouraging black children to be proud of their heritage and to enhance their self-confidence.

37. Afro-Bets 1,2,3 by Cheryl Willis Hudson

  • Children will enjoy learning numbers 1 through 10 as the Afro-Bets take turns stretching and bending into numbers.

38. Afro-Bets ABC Book by Cheryl Willis Hudson

  • The Afro-Bets ABC book uniquely presents letters A through Z for young children to discover with the fun-filled, captivating Afro-Bets Kids.

39. Afro-Bets Book of Colors by Margery Brown/Culverson Blair

  • Learn the colors in a fun way with the Afro-Bets Kids.

40. Afro-Bets Book of Shapes by Margery Brown/Culverson Blair

  • Learn the shapes in a fun way with the Afro-Bets Kids.

41. Riley Can be Anything by Mrs. Davina Hamilton/Elena Reinoso

  • This inspiring rhyming story follows Riley as he discovers some of the wonderful things he can do when he grows up.

42. Chocolate Me by Taye Diggs/Shane W. Evans

  • The boy in this book is teased for looking different than the other kids. He tells his mother he wishes he could be more like everyone else. She helps him to see how beautiful he is.

43. Mixed Me by Taye Diggs/Shane W. Evans

  • This story is about a boy named Mike who has to answer many questions about being mixed. Learn about the day in the life of a mixed-race child with this book.

44. I Am Mixed by Garcelle Beauvais/Sebastian A. Jones

  • This book follows twins, Jay and Nia, who explore what it is like to be of mixed ancestry, proving that a child is more than the sum of their parents.

45. I Love you More Than by Taye Diggs/Shane W. Evans

  • This story is perfect for families who are separated, whatever the circumstances. Its message of love highlights the bond between parent and child in ways that little ones will understand.

46. Lullaby (For a Black Mother) by Langston Hughes/Sean Qualls

  • The poet, Langston Hughes, celebrates the love between an African American mother and her baby.

47. Ada Twist Scientist by Andrea Beaty/David Roberts

  • Ada learns the value of thinking her way through problems and continuing to stay curious.

48. When God Made You by Matthew Paul Turner/David Catrow

  • This book inspires young readers to learn about their own special gifts and how they fit into God’s divine plan.

49. Monster Trouble by Lane Fredrickson/Michael Robertson

  • Nothing frightens Winifred Schnitzel, but she needs her sleep. The neighborhood monsters WON’T let her be! What’s a girl to do? (Hint: Monsters HATE kisses!)

50. Even Superheroes Have Bad Days by Shelly Becker/Eda Kaban

  • This energetic picture book has plenty of fun ideas to help kids cope when they’re feeling overwhelmed.

51. Hank’s Big Day by Evan Kuhlman/Chuck Groenink

  • Hank is a pill bug with a busy life.  His daily routine involves nibbling a dead leaf, climbing up a long stick, avoiding a skateboarder, and playing pretend with his best friend, a human girl named Amelia.

52. Not Norman: A Goldfish Story by Kelly Bennett/Noah Z. Jones

  • Norman the goldfish isn’t what this little boy had in mind. He wanted a different kind of pet. When he tries to trade Norman for a “good pet,” things don’t go as he planned.

53. Max and the Tag-Along Moon by Floyd Cooper

  • Grandpa promises Max that the moon at his house is the same moon that will follow him all the way home. When the sky darkens and the moon disappears behind the clouds, he worries that it didn’t follow him home after all.

54. These Hands by Margaret Mason/Floyd Cooper

  • Joseph learns that people joined their hands to fight discrimination so that one day, their hands could do anything in this world.

55. Can I Touch Your Hair?: Poems of Race, Mistakes, and Friendship by Irene Latham/Charles Waters

  • Two poets, one white and one black, explore race and childhood in this  collection tailored to provoke thought and conversation.

56. I Am Loved by Nikki Giovanni/Ashley Bryan

  • Nikki Giovanni’s collection of poems celebrates the importance of a child feeling loved.

57. The Word Collector by Peter Reynolds

  • Jerome discovers the magic and power of words all around him.

58. Max Speed by Stephen Shaskan

  • Max, a tiny speed racer, is off on the adventure of a lifetime in this  picture book. It proves that all you need for a big adventure is a little imagination.

59. Goodnight Lab: a Scientific Parody by Chris Ferrie

  • This book pokes fun at the clutter and chaos of a science lab life. Kids can laugh and learn at the same time.

60 . Mae Among the Stars by Roda Ahmed/Stasia Burrington

  • This book is about Little Mae’s curiosity, intelligence, and determination, matched with her parents’ encouraging words. This paved the way for her incredible success at NASA as the first African American woman to travel in space.

61. Hidden Figures: The True Story of Four Black Women and the Space Race by Margot Lee Shetterly/Laura Freeman

  • This book is based on the New York Times bestselling book and the Academy Award–nominated movie. Author Margot Lee Shetterly and illustrator Laura Freeman bring to you the inspiring true story of four black women who helped NASA launch men into space.

62. Have You Thanked an Inventor Today? by Patricia McLaurin & Dian Wang

  • This is a book of African-American inventor contributions to the American landscape. This book was written to appeal to African-American youth, inspiring creative thought and innovation.

63. I Want to Be a Police Officer by Laura Driscoll/Cantalina Echeverri

  • This story teaches readers about police officers who protect people, investigate crimes, and even work with trained dogs.

64. I Want to be a Doctor by Laura Driscoll/Echeverri

  • This story teaches readers about Doctors, who help sick people feel better. When little brother Jack hurts his foot, the family gets to meet all kinds of doctors.

65. The Penny Pot by Stuart Murphy/Lynn Cravath

  • This book shows kids how to count and use money. It also addresses the concept of saving to get what you want.

66. Elevator Magic by Stuart Murphy/G. Brian Karas

  • This book teaches kids subtraction. Ben sees crazy things every time the door opens to the elevator. Ride along as he subtracts his way down to the lobby, and decide for yourself if it’s elevator magic.

67. Early Sunday Morning by Denene Millner/Vanessa Brantley-Newton

  •  June is a girl who collects helpful pieces of advice on how to be less nervous about her big solo.

68. A Wild Cowboy by Dana Kessimakis Smith/Laura Freeman

  • When a little boy gets to spend the day at Grandma’s house, he’s really preparing to go on the cowboy ride of his dreams. With his imagination working, he and his partner ride their horses  to meet their ranch hand.

69. Beautiful Blackbird by Ashley Bryan

  • Blackbird was voted the most beautiful bird in the forest. The other birds, who were colored red, yellow, blue, and green, begged Blackbird to paint their feathers with a touch of black so they could be beautiful too. Black-bird warns them that true beauty comes from within, however the other birds persist.

70. Take a Picture of Me, James Van Der Zee by Andrea Loney/Keith Mallett

  • This is a story of James  who opened his own portrait studio in Harlem. He took photographs of legendary figures of the Harlem Renaissance–politicians such as Marcus Garvey, performers including Florence Mills, Bill -Bojangles- Robinson, and Mamie Smith–and ordinary folks in the neighborhood too.

71. Who is Barack Obama? by Roberta Edwards/Who HQ

  • This is a biography about Barack Obama who made history as our first African-American President. Children will learn his life story and become big dreamers.

72. The Seven Days of Kwanzaa by Ella Grier/John William Ward

  • This is a story that celebrates and honors the richness of African-American culture and traditions. It includes lyrics to songs and four simple recipes to make a holiday feast.

73. Hey Black Child by Useni Eugene Perkins/Bryan Collier

  • This work consists of empowering poems that celebrate black children and  inspires young people to dream big and achieve their goals.

74. Pretend You’re a Cat by Jean Marzollo/Jerry Pinkney

  • This interactive book consists of rhyming verses asking the reader to purr like a cat, scratch like a dog, leap like a squirrel, and bark like a seal.

75. Angels Watching Over Me by Julia Durango/Elisa Kleven

  • This book reassures young children that someone is watching over their well-being.

76. Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes/Gordon C. James

  • The reader will understand the feelings of a young African American boy as he gets a “fresh cut. ”  This trip to the barbershop changes the way he feels about the world and in turn how the world perceives him. This book is for older or mature children.

77. Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion by Alex T. Smith

  • Little Red is on her way to visit Auntie Rosie with a basket of goodies and  medicine. Along the way she meets the Very Hungry Lion, who wants to gobble her up. The Lion’s plan doesn’t work out the way he wanted.

78. Penny and the Magic Puff Balls by Alonda Williams/Tyrus Goshay

  • Penny wanted to wear her hair “down” like all of the other girls in her class. She wondered why her friends had long straight hair and she did not.  Penny’s mom assured her that her hair is perfect. Penny learns through a series of fun adventures, that wonderful and magical things happen when she wears her puffballs.

79. I’m A Pretty Little Black Girl by Betty Bynum

  • Mia finds that pretty is within herself and her friends, and being pretty is way beyond what the mirror shows.

80. I Am Enough by Grace Byers/Kenturah A. Bobo

  • This book encourages girls to love who they are, respect others, and be kind to one another.

81. This Little Light of Mine by Public Domain/E.B. Lewis

  • “This Little Light of Mine” is an African-American spiritual song dating back to the days of slavery. The song is included in this book so that you can learn to play and sing.

82. World of Reading: Black Panther: This is Black Panther (Level 1) by Alexandra C. West/Marvel Press Artist

  • Kids will learn how T’Challa, an African Prince, protects his nation and becomes the Super Hero Black Panther.

83. Marvel’s Black Panther: Meet Black Panther (Level 2) by R.R. Busse

  • T’Challa, the Black Panther and warrior King of Wakanda, teams up with elite members of the Dora Milaje–Wakanda’s special forces–and C.I.A. agent Everett K. Ross to defend his kingdom.

84. Black Panther Little Golden Book by Frank Berrios/Patrick Spaziante

  • Children, ages 2-5, will love this action-packed Little Golden Book as they learn about the Black Panther–from his Wakandan origins to his powers as well as his friends and enemies.

85. Caribbean Dream by Rachel Isadora

  •  Children will learn about a place where they can run, splash, and sing, on an island in the West Indies. Rachel Isadora’s book celebrates the things that make the Caribbean a very special home.

86. Marvelous Cornelius: Hurricane Katrina and the Spirit of New Orleans by Phil Bildner/John Parra

  • This is an inspiring story of a humble man and the heroic difference he made in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

87. Jabari Jumps by Gaia Cornwall

  • Jabari is definitely ready to jump off the diving board. He has finished his swimming lessons and passed his swim test. He’s a great jumper, so he’s not scared at all. Find out why he still needs his father for encouragement.

88. Happy in Our Skin by Fran Manushkin/Lauren Tobia

  • This is a story about the human family and how wonderful it is to be just who you are.

89. Lottie Paris and the Best Place by Angela Johnson/Scott Fischer

  • Lottie Paris has a favorite place. The library! She loves to go there and read about space. She knows there are rules at the library, but sometimes they are difficult to follow.

90. Lottie Paris Lives Here by Angela Johnson/Scott Fischer

  • Lottie Paris loves to dress up, play on the slide, and prefers to eat cookies instead of vegetables. She has a great imagination and sees the possibilities in the simplest pleasures.

91. Seeing Into Tomorrow Haiku by Nina Crews/Dr. Richard Wright

  • A selection of haiku poems by the acclaimed 20th-century African-American writer, Dr. Richard Wright. This work reflects the timeless realities of African-American youth.

92. I Can be Anything!  Don’t Tell Me I Can’t by Diane Dillon

  • Zoe embraces all the wonders of our world and its possibilities. “I can be anything I want to be!” she tells us, presenting herself in a range of careers. “But what if you fail?” asks a voice of doubt that attempts to undermine her confidence.

93. Billy Boo is Stuck in Goo by Jennifer Hamburg/Ross Burach

  • Billy Boo is stuck in goo. When others try to rescue him, they get stuck as well. How will they get out of this situation?

94. My Name is Judah by Pamela Denise Mack

  • This is a story about a little boy named Judah, who meets three new friends. He shares the meaning of his name which is Praise. Judah and his new friends, Suzie, Jorge, and Tom share a fun-filled day together.

95. It’s Great Being a Dad by Dan Bar-el/Gina Perry

  • Mythical characters are roaming around a magical land having a great time. However, Bigfoot gets his foot stuck in a tree trunk and Unicorn gets her horn impaled on a table and Robot’s saw-arm gets rusted into position.  Dad is there to fix things–even when a Sneaky Flying Alligator Pirate steals the Fairy Queen Ballerina Doctor’s wand.

96. The Doctor with an Eye for Eyes: The Story of Dr. Patricia Bath by Julia Finley Mosca/Daniel Rieley

  • Patricia Bath made it her mission to become a doctor. When obstacles like racism, poverty, and sexism threatened this goal, she persevered and created a game-changing treatment for blindness!

97. Do Not Bring Your Dragon to the Library by Julie Gassman/Andy Elkerton

  • Have you ever thought about bringing your dragon to the library? Don’t do it! You might have the best intentions, but that dragon will cause nothing but trouble.  This book has diverse characters and discusses library etiquette in a humorous way.

98. Phoebe Sounds it Out by Julie Zwillich/Denise Holmes

  • Meet Phoebe whose name doesn’t look quite like it sounds. At school, her classmates practice writing their names, but she struggles. Her teacher tells her to “just sound it out.” Phoebe doubts herself and procrastinates before resolving to try. Find out what she does to overcome her problem.

99. Not ‘Til Tomorrow, Phoebe by Julie Zwillich/Denise Holmes

  • Phoebe’s day is full of tomorrows: Mama says they can make pancakes, her teacher announces musicians will visit the class, and Phoebe will get ice cream after her haircut—but none of it ’til tomorrow. Phoebe feels frustrated and impatient. Why can’t these good things happen right now?

100. The Colors of Us by Karen Katz

  • Seven-year-old Lena is going to paint a picture of herself. She wants to use brown paint for her skin. When she and her mother take a walk through the neighborhood, Lena learns that brown comes in many different shades.

101. Manners with a Library Book by Amanda Doering Tourville/Chris Lensch

  • Should you let your baby sister play with a library book? This book shows how good manners can help everyone enjoy library books.

102. The Thing Lou Couldn’t Do by Ashley Spires

  • Lou and her friends are BRAVE adventurers. They run faster than airplanes, build mighty fortresses and rescue wild animals. But Lou has never climbed a tree before, and she’s sure she can’t do it. So she tries to convince her friends to play a “not-up-a-tree” game.

103. I like Myself by Karen Beaumont/David Catrow

  • This book encourages kids to appreciate everything about themselves—inside and out. Here’s a little girl who knows what really matters.

104. For You are a Kenyan Child by Kelly Cunnane/Ana Juan

  • Imagine you live in a small Kenyan village, where the sun rises over tall trees filled with doves. You wake to the sound of a rooster’s crow and rather than kicking a soccer ball across a field, you kick a homemade ball of rags. Despite this, things aren’t that different for a Kenyan child than they would be for an American kid.

105. If You Were a Kid Docking at the International Space Station by John Gregory/Jason Raish

  • Tim and Lucy, whose cousin Marie, is getting ready to blast off into space finds out how people travel to and from the space station. They also learn what life is like for astronauts in space, why space exploration is important, and much more.

106. Beautiful Moon: A Child’s Prayer by Tonya Bolden/Eric Velasquez

  • A young boy wakes and has forgotten to say his prayers. Outside his window, a beautiful moon lights the city around him. As the moon slowly makes its way across the heavens, the boy offers a simple prayer for the homeless, the hungry, and others.

107. The Girl With a Mind for Math: The Story of Taye Monatgue by Julia Finley Mosca/Daniel Rieley

  • After touring a German submarine in the early 1940s, young Raye wanted to become an engineer. However, sexism and racial inequality would challenge that dream.  She kept her greatest career accomplishment a secret for decades. Through it all, the gifted mathematician persisted.

108. Little Man Little Man: A Story of Childhood by James Baldwin/Nicholas Boggs

  • James Baldwin’s only children’s book, Little Man, Little Man, celebrates and explores the challenges and joys of black childhood.

109. We Love You Rosie by Cynthia Rylant/Linda Davick

  • Rosie is a very busy little dog. Sometimes she’s good, and sometimes she’s bad. Sometimes she wants to go out, and other times she wants to stay in. But no matter what, Rosie’s family loves her!

110. 3 x 4: Toon Level 1 (Toon Easy-to-read Comics, Level 1) by Ivan Brunetti

  • This book features a black male teacher who gave his class an assignment to draw sets of twelve. He encourages them to use their imagination to come up with creative solutions. Young readers will delight in the counting game while learning the basics of multiplication.

111. Kick it Mo (Mo Jackson) by David Adler/Sam Ricks

  • The soccer season is starting, and Mo has been working hard on his kicking skills. When he gets on the field on game day, it seems like all he gets to do is run back and forth. Will Mo ever get the chance to show his team what he can do?

112. Don’t Throw It To Mo! (Mo Jackson) by David Adler/Sam Ricks

  • Mo is the youngest kid on the Robins, his football team. His classmates don’t mind, but the kids on their rival team tease him for being a “butterfinger” who’s too tiny to catch the ball. How will Mo handle this situation?

113. Pass the Ball, Mo! (Mo Jackson) by David Adler/Sam Ricks

  • Mo loves basketball. He’s determined to learn how to pass, but as the shortest member of the team, he can’t seem to launch the ball high enough. Can Mo learn to pass in time to help his team win the big game?

114. Get a Hit, Mo! by David Adler/Sam Ricks

  • Baseball season has arrived and Mo is all set to play with his team, the Lions. Mo always bats last, and he always plays right field—and no balls ever come to right field. Will Mo ever get his chance to help the Lions win?

115. Young, Gifted and Black: Meet 52 Black Heroes from Past and Present by Jamie Wilson/Andrea Pippins

  • Children will meet 52 icons of color from the past and present in this celebration of inspirational achievement. This is a collection of stories about change makers to encourage, inspire and empower the next generation of youth.

116. Snow Day! by Candice Ransom/Erika Meza

  • Two siblings have woken up to snowy weather! Read along as they engage in their favorite winter activities with their neighborhood friends on their day off from school.

117. I am Human A Book of Empathy by Susan Verde/ Peter H. Reynolds

  • I Am Human shows that it’s okay to make mistakes while also emphasizing the power of good choices. This picture book is a celebration of empathy and encourages children to see themselves as part of one big imperfect family.

118. Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Black Boy by Tony Medina/Javaka Steptoe

  • Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Black Boy offers a fresh perspective of young men of color by depicting thirteen views of everyday life: young boys dressed in their Sunday best, running to catch a bus, and growing up to be teachers, and much more.

119. Kele’s Secret by Tolowa M. Mollel/Catherine Stock

  • A young Tanzanian boy named Yoanes overcomes his fear of the scariest place on his grandparents’ farm, the spooky shed, when he follows Kele, his grandmother’s hen, to see where she lays her eggs.

120. You Can Do It by Tony Dungy/Amy June Bates

  • Tony Dungy’s little brother, Linden, is a third grader who is having a bad day at school. Linden is the youngest of the Dungy family and the least motivated because he hasn’t found “it.” In a family where everyone seems to have found their special talent, all Linden knows is that he wants to make people happy.

121. We are Brothers by Yves Nadon/Jean Claverie

  • Every summer, two brothers swim to the rock, and one jumps off. But this summer, it’s time for both of them to take the leap. In this story, a younger brother discovers newfound strength and courage.

122. Thank You, Omu by Oge Mora

  • Everyone in the neighborhood loves Omu’s delicious stew! They follow their noses toward the scrumptious scent. And one by one, Omu offers a portion of her meal. Soon the pot is empty. Has she been so generous that she has nothing left for herself?

123. Two Problems for Sophia by Jim Averbeck/Yasmeen Ismail

  • Sophia quickly learns her new pet comes with two giraffe-sized problems. Learn what she does to solve these problems.

124. One Word from Sopha by Jim Averbeck/Yasmeen Ismail

  • Sophia tries various techniques to get the giraffe she always wanted. Find out if she is able to convince her Mom, Dad, Uncle, and Grand-mama.

125. Excellent Ed by Stacy McAnulty/Julia Sarcone-Roach

  • Everyone in the Ellis family is excellent–except Ed, the dog. Ed wonders if this is why he isn’t allowed to eat at the table or sit on the couch with the other children. He’s determined to find his own excellence.

126. Brave by Stacy McAnulty/Joanne Lew-Vriethoff

  • This book encourage kids to be brave in all the ways they can. This book will inspire kids to follow their hearts and to have courage, no matter the situation.

127. Goal by Mina Javaherbin/A.G. Goal

  • In a township in South Africa, Ajani and his friends have earned a brand-new, federation-size soccer ball. When a crew of bullies tries to steal their ball, find out if Ajani and his friends are able to beat them at their own game?

128. Me and Uncle Romie by Claire Hartfield/Jerome Lagarrigue

  • James can’t wait to get on board the train and go visit his uncle up north in New York City. He also  wishes he could take a little bit of home along with him. Will Uncle Romie, who’s a great artist, be able to help James?

129. Celebrate with ZaZa by Mylo Freeman

  • It’s Rosie’s birthday and Zaza is having a party for her. It’s time to celebrate!

130. Sleep Well, Siba and Saba by Nansubuga Nagadya Isdahl/Sandra Van Doorn

  •  Sisters, Siba and Saba, are always losing something. Sandals, slippers, sweaters— – you name it, they lose it. When the two sisters fall asleep each night, they dream about the things they have lost that day. Until, one night, their dreams begin to reveal something entirely unexpected….

131. Danitra Brown, Class Clown by Nikki Grimes/E.B. Lewis

  • Best friends, Zuri Jackson and Danitra Brown, respond very differently to the start of school. For Zuri, there are so many things to ponder — a new teacher who replaced the old one she liked so much, passing math, and worrying about her mother’s health. But for Danitra, the only real deal is being true to herself, having fun, and supporting Zuri in any way she can.

132. Meet Danitra Brown by Nikki Grimes/Floyd Cooper

  • This book introduces young readers to Danitra Brown and her best friend, Zuri Jackson.”

133. World of Reading: Doc McStuffins All Stuffed Up: Pre-level 1 by Disney Book Group/Catherina Happy

  • Donny’s teddy bear keeps making him sneeze! Teddy is sad and doesn’t know why Donny won’t play with him anymore, but Doc is on the case!

134. Doc McStuffins Out of the Box (Flap ‘n Tab) by Disney Book Group/Marcy Kelman

  • Little Jack, Doc’s jack-in-the-box, is having trouble popping out of his box. His father, Big Jack, asks Doc to take a look, but Little Jack is too scared to let Doc examine him! Through this format, children can play along with Doc, Little Jack, and the rest of the toys using die-cut tabs and lift-the-flaps for a unique, experience.

135. Doc McStuffins Little First Look and Find – PI Kids by Editors of Phoenix International Publications/

  • Kids can search 7 amazing scenes for Doc McStuffins characters and objects. Then, go to the back of the book for extra Look and Find challenges!

136. Doc McStuffins Pet Vet by Disney Book Group/Disney Storybook Art Team

  • Donny’s new toy dog, Fetchin’ Findo, stops doing what he does best: fetching! Can Doc, the vet, find out what’s wrong with the little pup? This story is based on a special Pet Vet episode and includes lots of fun stickers!

137. The Ring Bearer by Floyd Cooper

  • Jackson’s mother is getting married, and he gets to be the ring bearer. But Jackson is worried . . . What if he trips? Or walks too slowly? She’s supposed to be the flower girl, but Jackson’s not sure she’s taking her job as seriously as she should.

138. Tea Cakes for Tosh by Kelly Starling Lyons/E.B. Lewis

  • Tosh loves listening to Grandma Honey tell family stories.  This story celebrates the important bond between grandchild and grandparent and the stories that make a family strong.

139. Grace for President by Kelly DiPucchio/LeUyen Pham

  • When Grace’s teacher reveals that the United States has never had a female president, she decides to be the first. She immediately starts off her political career as a candidate in the school’s mock election!

140. I’m a Big Brother Now by Katura J. Hudson/Sylvia L. Walker

  •  This picture book explores the  excitement and pride of a young boy who takes on an important new role as a big brother.

141. The Quickest Kid in Clarksville by Pat Zietlow Miller/Frank Morrison

  • It’s the day before the big parade and Alta can only think about one thing: Wilma Rudolph, three-time Olympic gold medalist.  Alta is the quickest kid in Clarksville, Tennessee, just like Wilma once was. But what happens when a new girl with shiny new shoes comes along and challenges Alta to a race?

142. A Beach Tail by Karen P. Williams/Floyd Cooper

  • This is story about a father-son bond. A boy named Gregory is lost on the beach  after his dad warns “Don’t go in the water, and don’t leave Sandy.” This work reassures the young reader that there is hope even in Greg’s moment of worry at finding himself lost and alone.

143. Little Melba and Her Big Trombone by Katheryn Russell-Brown/Frank Morrison

  • At age seven, Melba fell in love with a big, shiny trombone, and soon taught herself to play the instrument. By the time she was a teenager, Melba’s extraordinary gift for music led her to the world of jazz. She joined a band led by trumpet player Gerald Wilson and toured the country. Overcoming obstacles of race and gender, Melba went on to become a famed trombone player and arranger.

144. Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña/Christian Robinson

  • Every Sunday after church, CJ and his grandma ride the bus across town. But today, CJ wonders why they don’t own a car like his friend Colby. Why doesn’t he have an iPod like the boys on the bus?  Each question is met with an encouraging answer from grandma, who helps him see the beauty in their routine and the world around them.

145. My Kicks: A Sneaker’s Story by Susan Verde/Katie Kath 

  • When a child finds that his toes have outgrown his favorite shoes, and they’ve gotten too dirty and smelly, his mom says it’s time for a new pair. Resistant to let go, the boy reminisces about all the good times he’s had with his favorite kicks on the city streets.

146. Don’t Touch My Hair by Sharee Miller

  • Wherever Aria goes, someone wants to touch her hair. However, Aria has had enough!

147. Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean Michel Basquiat by Javaka Steptoe

  • This is the story of Jean-Michel Basquiat and his unique, collage-style paintings that became famous in the 1980s.

148. What’s Special About Me, Mama? by Kristina Evans/Javaka Steptoe

  • This a great story about family, self-love and celebrating what makes one unique.

149. Knock, Knock: My Dad’s Dream for Me by Daniel Beaty/Bryan Collier

  • Every morning a boy awaits the sounds of his dad knocking on the door. But what happens when, one day, that “knock knock” doesn’t come? This powerful and inspiring book shows the love that an absent parent can leave behind, and the strength that children find in themselves as they grow up and follow their dreams.

150. When the Beat was Born: DJ Kool Here and the Creation of Hip Hop by Laban Carrick Hill/Theodore Taylor III

  • From his childhood in Jamaica to his youth in the Bronx, Laban Carrick Hill’s book tells how Kool Herc came to be a DJ. He invented music that would define a culture and transform the world.

151. Trombone Shorty by Troy Andrews/Bryan Collier

  • From the Tremé neighborhood in New Orleans, Troy “Trombone Shorty” was a prodigy,  leading his own band by age six. Today this Grammy-nominated artist headlines the legendary New Orleans Jazz Fest.

152. Grandma in Blue with a Red Hat by Scott Menchin/Harry Bliss

  • When a young boy learns about what makes art special, he realizes that these same characteristics are what makes his grandmother special, too. As a result, he finds the inspiration to create his own masterpiece that’s one of a kind.

153. Ron’s Big Mission by Rose Blue/Corinne Nadon

  • Nine-year-old Ron loves going to the library. Today, Ron is ready to take out books by himself, but in the segregated world of South Carolina in the 1950s, there is resistance. Children will learn how Ron desegregated his library through peaceful resistance.

154. Bippity Bop Barbershop by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley/E.B. Lewis

  •  Miles makes his first trip to the barbershop with his father. Like most little boys, he is afraid of the sharp scissors, the buzzing razor, and the prospect of picking a new hairstyle. But with the support of his dad, the barber, and the other men in the barbershop, Miles bravely sits through his first haircut.

155. Squeak, Rumble, Whomp! Whomp! Whomp!: A Sonic Adventure by Wynton Marsalis/Paul Rogers

  • World-renowned jazz musician and composer Wynton Marsalis and acclaimed illustrator Paul Rogers takes readers (and listeners) on a rollicking, clanging, clapping tour through the many sounds that fill a neighborhood.

156. The 5’o Clock Band by Troy Andrews/Bryan Collier

  • After letting his band down by missing rehearsal, Shorty has some serious questions about what it means to be a leader. He hits the streets of New Orleans to find some answers and soak up inspiration.

157. All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold/Suzanne Kaufman

  • Follow a group of children through a day in their school, where everyone is welcomed with open arms.  A school where students grow and learn from each other’s traditions

158. Ben Doesn’t Like to be Hugged by Zetta Elliott/Purple Wong

  • A little girl uses rhyming verse to describe the unique traits of her autistic friend. Benny likes trains and cupcakes without sprinkles, but he can also be fussy sometimes. The narrator doesn’t mind, however, because “true friends accept each other just the way they are.”

159. The Day you Begin by Jacqueline Woodson/Rafael Lopez

  • Jacqueline Woodson’s lyrical book reminds us that we all feel like outsiders sometimes-and how brave it is that we go forth anyway. Sometimes, when we reach out and begin to share our stories, others will be happy to meet us halfway.

160. Around Our Way on Neighbor’s Day by Tameka Fryer Brown/Charlotte Riley-Webb

  • Neighbors gather on a hot summer day for a block party: Kids play Double Dutch; men debate at the barber shop and play chess; mothers and aunts cook and friends dance.

161. The Joys of Being a Little Black Boy by Valerie Reynolds/Chris Turner

  • Roy is a boy who will take  your children on a journey of joy with some of the world’s most notable Black men who were all at one time young Black boys.

162. Love your Hair by Dr. Phoenyx Austin

  • This book takes girls on a  journey, lead by a super-cute, confident  girl named Phoenyx, who loves her hair and wants every beautiful brown skin girl to love their hair too!

163. I’m a Pretty Princess by Crystal Swain-Bates

  • Makayla is a pretty black princess who lives in a castle  far away. Although she has cute dresses, a sparkling tiara, and a shiny wand, she knows that being a princess isn’t just about her fancy things. She wants to be the best princess ever!

164. Look What Brown Can Do by T. Marie Harris/Neda Ivanova

  • Every Brown child who’s still dreaming about what to be when they grow up should read this book. It encourages them to dream big and provides inspiration.

165. Naturally Me by Crystal Swain-Bates

  • This book is designed to boost self-esteem and build confidence in children of all ages. It follows a freckle-faced girl and a gap-toothed boy throughout their day as they show the reader how they celebrate their appearance and feel comfortable in their own skin.

166. I am a  Brilliant Little Black Boy by Betty K. Bynum/Joshua B. Drummond

  • The book  is a self esteem builder for young boys of color! It is a book of poems and a must for your library.

167. Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman

  • Grace loves stories. When she gets a chance to play a role in Peter Pan, she knows exactly who she wants to be. However she meets resistance from those in her class when she does not look the part.

168. Big Hair Don’t Care by Crystal Swain-Bates/Caroline Binch

  • Lola has bigger hair than the other kids at school. She is confident and  sings the praises of her big hair throughout this rhyming picture book.

169. Charlotte and the Quiet Place by Deborah Sosin/Sara Woolley

  • Charlotte likes quiet-time. However, wherever Charlotte goes, she is surrounded by noise. Where can Charlotte find a quiet place? Find out when you read this book.

170. This is the Rope by Jaqueline Woodson/James Ransome

  • This is the story of one family’s journey north during the Great Migration with a little girl in South Carolina who finds a rope under a tree one summer.  For three generations, that rope is passed down, used for everything from jump rope games to tying suitcases onto a car.

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17 Children’s Books that Creatively Teach Kids Practical Skills

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using the links.

17 book that teach life skills

I love reading!! I am the person that can spend all day in the library and bookstore soaking up knowledge from various books. When I became a mother, I hoped my son would share the same love of reading as I do.

It turns out that he does. However, I found ways to make books fun and interesting for him.

We often use books and hand-on activities to learn new skills within our household. I wanted to share with you 17 books that promoted fun interaction and  used creativity to teach my son a new concept.

*Click on the links and you will find a book review and  hands-on activities that we have done to supplement the books!

  1. Once Upon an Alphabet: Short Stories For All the Letters by Oliver Jeffers.

 

In this book, each letter has a word and short story related to it. The stories have various themes such as humor, gratefulness, and the art of thinking.  This book also helps children learn how to solve problems through its story telling.

 

  1. The Question Song by Kaethe Zemach

 

This book teaches kids to solve everyday problems. It addresses issues such as injuries and selfishness. My son found it interesting because it contains repetition, rhythm, and rhyming words.

 

  1. Emily’s First 100 Days of School by Rosemary Wells

 

This book is about a bunny named Emily who is starting school. Emily tells the reader about her first 100 days of school through short stories. This book  encouraged my son to create other stories with numbers. It helped him learn the numbers 1-100 through imaginative play.

 

  1. Big Words for Little Geniuses by Susan and James Patterson

 

This book is colorful and introduces kids to big words in alphabetical order. The first word was ARACHIBUTYROPHOBIA!!!! This word means a fear of peanut butter sticking to the top of your mouth. At first, I thought this book would be too advanced for my toddler. However, I decided to give it a try.

It became a great learning and bonding experience for my son and I. He learned how to pronounce all the words in the book. We also try to use the words as we are talking daily.

  1. The Great Dictionary Caper by Judy Sierra.

 

This is a fun, interactive, and flashy book about parts of speech, literacy, and language arts. This book addresses topics such as actions verbs, homophones, palindromes, onomatopoeias, contractions, etc. The Action verb page has various words like somersault, jump, glide and ricochet. Each word is written and drawn to portray their action.

 

  1. What’s On Your Plate? Exploring the World of Food by Whitney Stewart

 

This book highlights countries such as Mexico, Ethiopia, China, and Greece, and gives the reader information on their locations, foods frequently eaten, and recipes. The enticing food pictures in this book will make you hungry. My son gained an interest in learning about geography and connected with this book instantly. He learned that he eats similar foods to people all over the world.

 

  1. Meet Black Panther by R.R. Busse and This is Black Panther by Alexandra West

 

 

These two books introduced the characters and their roles for the Black Panther Comic Books. It also addressed themes such as good vs bad, courage, hard work, intelligence, instinct, loyalty, etc. One of the books identified vocabulary words and asked the reader to find them within the story. My son became excited when he saw the words in the story! I took it a step further and introduced my son to settings, geography, action verbs, and science.

 

  1. Your Fantastic Elastic Brain, Stretch It, Shape It by JoAnn Deak, PhD.

 

 

This book uses a diverse group of young characters to educate its reader on the powerful brain. A few concepts addressed in this book are parts of the brain and their functions. I was thrilled when we read the fact, “Making mistakes is one of the best ways your brain learns and grows.” Many children get frustrated when they are learning something new because mistakes are made, which is a part of the process. This book has taught me one way to handle my son’s frustration as he experiences the trial and error process.

 

  1.  I Want to Be a Doctor by Laura Driscoll

 

 

This story is about a boy who broke his leg by jumping off the top bunkbed. His family takes him to the emergency room, where his inquisitive older sister takes the reader on a journey to learn about the various doctors helping her brother.  Children will learn about specialized professions such as Radiologists, Orthopedists, Neonatologists and Dentists.

 

  1. Find Your Way in Space By Paul Boston

 

This book will take your young reader on a space mission using math and mapping skills. This book encourages children to solve a mystery. Mathematical concepts addressed in this book are counting, addition, shapes, identifying relationships between objects, colors, length, height, map coordinates, and telling time. The concepts are introduced through questions the reader must answer.

 

  1. The Berenstain Bears Learn About Strangers by Stan and Jan Berenstain

 

 

In this book, Brother Bear was cautious and wary of strangers. Sister Bear, similar to my son, was “friendly to a fault” and said hello to everyone. Brother intervened and told his sister to stop talking to strangers, but he couldn’t articulate why. This book explains to the young reader what to do around strangers.

 

  1. My Weird School Fast Facts – Space, Humans, and Farts by Dan Gutman

 

 

This book contains a lot of fun, humorous, and engaging information for kids. Your child will discover a love of science from reading this book! If you have a younger child, read these facts to them and see how amazed they become.

 

  1. When Miles Got Mad by Sam Kurtzman-Counter and Abbie Schiller

 

 

This is a great book that teaches kids to use their words to express their feelings. It also uses an image, a red monster, to represent anger and rage. The red monster makes a connection to what a child feels when angry feelings overwhelm them. This book addresses other themes such as empathy, self-control, keeping hands to self, and problem solving.

 

 

  1. How Does My Home Work? By Chris Butterworth

 

The author brings awareness to actions kids take every day in the home such as flipping on the light switch, accessing water from the faucet, and taking a drink from the refrigerator. He then uses the book to show children how these things happen. This book made my son more curious about how our home functions. He became more conscious of turning off the lights and water before he leaves a room! It also encourages a greater appreciation for your living space.

 

  1. Treasure Map by Stuart Murphy

 

 

This book is about a group of friends, the Elm Street Kids’ Club, following a treasure map to find a time capsule. The author shows the reader how to follow a map by giving clues that identify landmarks and directions. Other concepts presented in the book are decision-making skills, interpreting symbols, and scales. The author provides teachers and parents activities to supplement learning. Furthermore, he includes other books that address map reading skills.

 

16. Milo’s Museum by Zetta Elliott

 

This book’s plot was unexpected but refreshing. It is about a girl named Milo who takes a class field trip to the museum with her grandfather as a chaperone. As they were exploring the museum, Milo admired the art but something was missing. Children will witness a child taking the initiative to create an idea, plan and execute it. They will learn vocabulary words and will have access to a guide on how to create their own exhibit in the back of the book.

 

17. 3 x 4 a Toon Book by Ivan Brunetti

 

This comic book is about a teacher who gives his students a homework assignment of drawing 12 things but in sets.  He is addressing multiplication in the book. The story goes on to show the reader the process that each student executes to complete their homework assignment based on their interests. At the end, you will find tips for parents and teachers on How to Read Comics with Kids.

All of the books listed were fun and interesting to read. They opened my son’s mind  to learning something new and applying what he learned.

Let us know which book was your favorite and what activities you did to supplement the book.

Don’t forget to sign up for our FREE course on How to Teach the Alphabet in a Fun Way!

Also, download our FREE Printable Holiday Card so your children can showcase their artwork to family and friends this Holiday Season!

Happy Reading!

 

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4 Simple and Fun Pumpkin Activities for Kids

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using the links.

Pumpkin activities

Every fall, I ask myself what are simple, fun, and educational pumpkin activities to do with my son.  We attend fall festivals in our county and get at least 4 pumpkins annually. This year, I was looking for activities that DID NOT require me to purchase more craft supplies from the store. I wanted to use items that we had on hand.

Below is what we did and had a blast!

Paint The Pumpkin

Materials Needed

 

  1. Put Newspapers or cloth on table for easy clean-up
  2. Put water in cup to clean paint brushes.
  3. Put napkins in paper plate #1 to clean and dry paint brushes.
  4. Put small sections of various color paints on paper plate # 2.
  5. Place pumpkin on table with newspaper/magazine paper or cloth.
  6. Let your child be creative and paint the pumpkin.

 

paint set up
This is our set up before starting to paint.

 

Pick, Count, and Cook Pumpkin Seeds

Materials Needed

 

  1. Place pumpkin on cutting board or pan in front of child.
  2. Give the child a spoon and have them scoop out the seeds.
  3. If they are having difficulty using the spoon, have them use their hands.
  4. Instruct child to put seeds in bowl.
  5. Have the child count the seeds while scooping.
  6. Another option is for the child to count the seeds at the end of the activity.
  7. Roast the pumpkin seeds for a great snack!

 

Scooping pumpkin seeds with spoon!

 

Make Pumpkin Soup with Rice

Materials Needed

  1. Follow our Pumpkin Soup with Rice Recipe.
  2. Have fun eating it with your family!

 

Access Our Pumpkin Soup with Rice Recipe

at the bottom of this post!

 

Have a Science Lesson and Learn about Decomposition

Materials Needed (please note this activity came from Sid the Science Kid Season 1 Episode 6 called Mushy Banana)

  1. Once the painted pumpkin has started to decay put it in a large plastic bag or container.
  2. Let the pumpkin decompose until it changes colors.
  3. Put plastic gloves on the child before touching pumpkin.
  4. Stay close to the child to ensure they don’t put the pumpkin in their mouth.
  5. Have the child feel the pumpkin and compare it to a fresh pumpkin.
  6. Have the child take a closer look by using their magnifying glass.
  7. Ask the child the following questions…
  • How is the pumpkin different from the fresh pumpkin?
  • How does it smell?
  • What colors do you see?
  • How does it feel?
  1. Put Pumpkin in the compost when complete.

 

He is analyzing a decayed pumpkin!

 

We cut the pumpkin in quarters and now he examines the decayed flesh.

Don’t forget to sign up for our FREE course on How to Teach the Alphabet in a Fun Way!

Get the password for the library with Creamy Pumpkin Soup with Rice Recipe by completing this form. Once you press the GET ACCESS NOW button, we will send you an email with the password. Then go to SOY Resource Library and enter the password.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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How to Introduce Multiplication to Kids in a Fun Way

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using the links.

HOW TO INTRODUCE

How to Introduce Multiplication to Kids in a Fun Way

The short story of Why I would Expose my Three-Year Old Son to Multiplication

In order to introduce multiplication to kids, you have to make it fun! My son was playing with numbers in our math set and saw the times tables sign(x). He held up the x and wanted to know what it meant. I challenged myself to explain it in a manner he could understand and I succeeded!!

A Great Children’s Book to Introduce Multiplication to Kids

About three weeks later, I went to the library and saw in the children’s section the title, 3 x 4 a Toon Book by Ivan Brunetti. I thought this comic book would be an excellent tool to further explain how multiplication works to my son.

*Bonus Tip

Go to the bottom of this post to Access 2 Hands-On Art Activities that will Explain Multiplication

The author provides colorful pictures, diverse characters, and a great storyline to introduce multiplication.

A Brief Summary

It is about a teacher who gives his students a homework assignment of drawing 12 things but in sets. A few students raise their hands and ask the teacher about various options to completing their homework. For example, one student asks, “Can I draw 3 sets of 4?”, the teacher replies, “It’s up to you!”

The story goes on to show the reader the process that each student executes to complete their homework assignment. One student likes baseball, so he draws three of each item: baseball, gloves, bats, and hats.

There is one student that needs more time to process her homework assignment. Her mom, dad, and even little brother are there to help her undertake this project. She comes up with a great idea at the end; however, you will have to read the book in order to find out what it is!

Tips for Parents and Teachers

At the end of the book, you will find tips for parents and teachers on How to Read Comics with Kids. The author explains how kids are naturally drawn to the detailed pictures in comics, which makes them want to read the words!

Read this book and provide your child with an entertaining explanation to the importance of multiplication!

What are other ways to teach multiplication tables to children?

One common way is to have children study their times tables a certain amount of time each day. This is how I learned. However, there are creative ways through play that children can learn as well.

  1. Build a number city of multiples with Legos.
    • My son saw a YOUTUBE video about counting by 3s. We built the following numbers with legos: 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, and 24,
    • We created a role play where his toy elephant’s mission was to destroy the city.
    • Every time elephant knocked down and destroyed a number, my son had to build the number up.
    • This role play provided familiarity with multiples of three.
    • Plus, my son was the city’s hero because he kept building the numbers up.
    • He did not realize he was learning while doing this activity.

multiples of 3 lego city
Multiples of  3 Lego City! Pictured here is 3, 6, 9, 12, and 15.

  1. Songs– Many people know the words to a lot of songs not because someone taught them but through hearing it repeatedly. Use this same concept with learning multiplication.

How do you learn your time tables quickly?

A great way to learn time tables quickly is through tricks. Here are some examples of tricks below…

  1. Multiples of 10 – just add a 0 to the number
    • 3 x 10 = 30 (Add 0 to 3 to make 30)
    • 4 x 10 = 40 (Add 0 to 4 to make 40)
  2.  Multiples of 11 – (double the number for number 1-9)
    • 3 x 11 = 33 (write the number 3 twice)
    • 5 x 11 = 55 (write the number 5 twice)
  3. Multiplies of 9 – (use your fingers)

Multiplication is a concept we use often in life; additionally, it is great to learn it in a fun way! Tell me how you introduce multiplication in a fun way to your child or students.

Happy Learning!

Don’t forget to Sign Up for our FREE Course of How to Teach the Alphabet in a Fun Way!

Get the password for the library with 2 Hands-On Art Activities That Will Explain Multiplication by completing this form. Once you press the GET ACCESS NOW button, we will send you an email with the password. Then go to SOY Resource Library and enter the password.

 

 

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Life Skills – Teaching Kids How Your Home Functions

*This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using the links.

TEACH KIDS HOW YOUR HOME FUNCTIONS

After my young son washes his hands, he often looks under the sink at the pipes and explains how the water travels in and out of our home. This concept was introduced to him by the cartoon, Sid the Science Kid.

In the Where Did the Water Go episode, Sid wonders what happens to all the dirty water when it goes down the drain. Sid’s father shows him there is a pipe that brings in the water and one that takes it out.

After witnessing my little one’s curiosity, I wondered if there was a children’s book on how the home functions. I finally found the book, How Does My Home Work?” by Chris Butterworth.

The author brings awareness to actions kids take every day in the home such as flipping on the light switch, accessing water from the faucet, and taking a drink from the refrigerator. He then uses the book to show children how these things happen.

We learned that electricity comes from power stations in which water is boiled to make steam. The steam causes the turbine blades to spin, which turns the generator. The generator contains a coil of copper wire that spins around a set of magnets, which produces electricity. The book also addresses cleaner ways to make electricity like wind turbines and solar panels.

This work contains detailed, colorful pictures and scenery that helps to explain how the home works. It also teaches children about items in the home that makes it function such as the circuit breaker, gas meter, and water tank. There are colorful pictures of household appliances like the dishwasher, iron, space heater, blender, and toaster.

*Bonus Tip

Go to the bottom of this post to Access “How Your Home Functions”  Fun Activity –  A Great  Activity for You and Your Children/Students

* PLEASE NOTE THIS IS AN ACTIVITY WE CREATED TO SUPPLEMENT THE BOOK

This book made my son more curious about how our home functions. He is more conscious of turning off the lights and water before he leaves a room! It also encourages a greater appreciation for your living space.

I recommend this book to anyone because it teaches life skills!

Happy Learning!

Get the password for the library with “How Your Home Functions” Fun Activity by completing this form. Once you press the Get My Fun Activity Now button, we will send you an email with the password. Then go to SOY Resource Library and enter the password.

 

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Clever Ways to Introduce Young Children to Feelings

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Clever Ways to Introduce Young Children to Feelings

One of my favorite books to read with my son is When Miles Got Mad by Sam Kurtzman-Counter and Abbie Schiller.  When I heard the authors were releasing a new book, Un Pequeño Libro Sobre Sentimientos/A Little Book About Feelings, I could not wait to read it.

This is an engaging, bilingual work that introduces young children to “emotional literacy.”

The book begins by giving the young reader a simple definition for feelings. It supplements the definition with a storyline involving a dog, big sister bear, baby bear, and mama bear.

Baby bear sees his sister giving the dog a treat and becomes upset because he wants one as well. He begins to cry but then remembers to use his words to identify his feelings. He asks mama for a snack. As a result, mama bear recognizes the baby’s feelings and gives him a snack.

The authors use relatable elephant characters to explain that feelings can range from sadness with aches to happiness with warmness. Children learn that feelings are always changing and this teaches them adaptability and empathy towards others.

The first time I read the book to my three-year-old son, he identified with the elephant characters because it is his favorite animal. The second time, he read the book to me and insisted on having his stuffed elephant sitting next to him.

We like this book because it provides opportunities for interaction and discussions!

Access How to Use Un Pequeño Libro Sobre Sentimientos/A Little Book About Feelings, to Encourage Interaction with Young Children at the bottom of this post!

I was able to discuss with my son that pets have the ability to express their emotions. We pinpointed examples of this through our observations of dogs in the neighborhood. We took it a step further by role playing the emotions of the dogs!

My son and I made predictions, which is an excellent exercise for reading comprehension, of why the elephant character was upset in the book. He thought the elephant’s friend did not want to play. I thought the elephant had a bad day at school. This book is clever because it is written for open interpretation! We agreed that we were both right!

Bonus – A Great Cause

  • 10,000 copies of this book will be donated to children enrolled in Head Start.
  • Bilingual lessons will be created for classrooms and education centers nationwide, based on the themes in the book.

Read this story to explore a range of feelings and to contribute to a great cause!!

Happy Learning!!

Get the password for the library with How to Use Un Pequeño Libro Sobre Sentimientos/A Little Book About Feelings to Encourage Interaction with Young Children by completing this form. Once you press the LEARN HOW NOW button, we will send you an email with the password. Then go to SOY Resource Library and enter the password.

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