Last week, I took my boys to see the musical version of one of their all-time favorite books, Knuffle Bunny, by Mo Willems at the Alliance Theatre here in Atlanta. I was a little worried that the show would not live up to the book (you know how movies are rarely as good as the book), but it was terrific! We loved seeing the book re-imagined into a show. It was hilarious, sweet, and really the perfect musical for young readers/theater-goers.
After the show, we went to the new Seriously Silly!: The Art and Whimsy of Mo Willems exhibit at the High Museum.
While there, I learned that Mo has written a series for early readers titled Cat the Cat. Although this series is new to me, it has been around for a little while. The books are purposefully repetitive, predictable, and written in big, bold text to appeal to beginning readers.
We enjoyed this new gem in our house this week, along with our other Mo Willems’ faves, Knuffle Bunny and Elephant and Piggie. This week I also a picked up a few more not new, but new to me, picture books.
Milo’s Hat Trick by Jon Agee is everything you want a picture book to be: engaging, funny, with a great ending. I was definitely rooting for the poor magician who needed a big trick to save his career. The ending left a big smile on my face! I could definitely see my class enjoying this book. Check it out if you haven’t read it. You won’t be sorry!
The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig is another book I’ve seen often, but never picked up to read before. It is about a boy who feels invisible. He is never picked as a partner or playmate. No one ever asks him to play or be on their team. The beautiful writing along with the illustrations by Patrice Barton honestly made me tear up. The feelings of Brian’s loneliness are palpable. When a new student joins the class, he sees Brian and eventually reaches out to become his friend. Next school year, I hope to use this poignant book during a class meeting to discuss inclusion, empathy, and friendship.
Along with these picture book gems, I’m still reading Jennifer Seravallo’s excellent new book, The Reading Strategies Book. Reading teachers, go get this book! Stat! I am really enjoying it so far.
What are you reading this week? Leave your titles in the comments!