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Scamper And The Magic Of Appreciation

In Scamper and the Magic of Appreciation by Michal Y. Noah and Loren Noah, we are taken on a journey by Scamper, the squirrel who allows us to see the beauty in everyday little moments and to appreciate all we have around us.

The poetic prose of the story from start to finish is impressive. Just like the author’s note at the beginning of the story, we read impactful words of empowerment and feel motivated by every word throughout. The illustrations by Favreau are enchanting and sweet, literally beaming joy from every page.

I agree with the author about the importance of empowering young children and knowing their happiness and self-worth are in their own minds. I believe we sometimes forget as parents or caretakers how critical it is for an adolescent mind to learn the value of self-esteem and tend to only teach our children to just be ‘good kids.’ This book helps me remember that although, yes, we want our kids to behave nicely, especially around other people, to be good to themselves and enjoy life is just as equally relevant.

I would recommend this book to anyone with children or even someone who is looking for a confidence boost or great motivational quotes. The story has loads of them strewn about its length. This quote in particular, “Above me a blank canvas, a sky that’s clear and blue; On it I can paint my dreams, each day I will start anew.”, fills me with such hope and rapture that I will very likely repeat that as a morning mantra from now on.

Scamper and the Magic of Appreciation is a beautifully written picture book that encourages children, and adults, to look for the beauty within themselves. This children’s book is empowering as well as entertaining and will be a book that the whole family will want to read more than once.

Pages: 36 | ISBN : 0996775757

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All Things Are Possible

Michelle Wagner Author Interview

Mickey on the Move Farming follows a young boy with Cochlear Implants that gets Aqua Cochlear so that he can now enjoy activities without fear of them getting wet. What was the inspiration for your story?

That all things are possible. It took Cochlear over 20 years to develop the Aqua device. When my son was first implanted he could not hear me or other children while swimming. He always feared getting his “computer ears wet in the rain and it took the fun out of a lot of summer activities. 

The art in this book is fantastic. What was the art collaboration process like with illustrator Jenny Phelps?

After first writing the book I reviewed dozens of artists’ drawings of our characters. Jenny Phelps was great right off the bat. She not only is an amazing artist she has a gift of portraying our emotions as well.

What is one thing that people point out after reading your book that surprises you?

Everyone has a lot of gratitude. So many people out there (still today ) have never heard of the cochlear implant. It is educating not only for children, but adults as well. For people that do know what they are, typically do not know what an intense surgery is or how long it takes to activate and recover.

Will there be more Mickey on the Move books, and if so when will they be available?

Yes, absolutely. Mickey is a super passionate and curious 14 year old. He is always exploring, eager for a new adventure and loves sports. I think it will be a very long series following him into his adult years. 

Author Links: Instagram | Facebook | Website

He and his mom take pride in farming and gardening together, doing everything from raising chickens to growing delicious fruits and vegetables in their backyard orchard.
Mickey, who was born with deafness in both ears, has overcome obstacles to fully enjoy the great outdoors.
His Aqua Cochlear implants allow him to hear and appreciate the beautiful sounds in nature without the worry of weather dampening his day!
Join Mickey for another adventure!

The Perfect Dot

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The Perfect Dot by author and illustrator T.C. Bartlett tells the story of how the universe is formed. This magnificent picture starts with one perfect dot that flies around and doesn’t know what its purpose is. Eventually, that tiny dot decides to stop and spin. When it starts spinning, extraordinary things begin to happen, and soon there are millions of perfect dots. Soon, millions upon millions of planets were floating around each of the shining dots. Finally, the one perfect dot had found its purpose.

The Perfect Dot is a picture book telling the story of how the universe was formed. With one big bang, a single light became millions. This intellectual story is illustrated with detailed black and white pictures. It teaches the theory of the Big Bang in a way children can understand and comprehend. T.C. Bartlett brings the universe to life with his drawings showing the vast darkness and the beauty and delicate nature of the single dot. Once the universe is created, the illustrations of the planets and stars are detailed and eye-catching. I also liked how the text is not in organized, clean lines; instead, they are scattered around the pages and fit into the chaotic nature of the story.

I loved this simple and straightforward portrayal of this secular theory on how the universe was formed. It provides young children an explanation in words they can comprehend and uses clear and direct images. With some added humor, this fascinating story introduces the science of the universe’s creation to children in an age-appropriate manner.

The Perfect Dot is a creative picture book for preschool and kindergarten-age children on how the universe was created. Teachers will love having this book in their classroom library to explain this complex topic in a simple and entertaining way.

Pages: 50 | ISBN: 1957422998

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The Fox’s Palace

Francis the Fox is living in the city near the sea. He wants his family to be proud of him, and he sends them photos and letters saying how wonderful he is doing. The problem is, it is all a lie, so he doesn’t want his family to come to visit him. Francis, however, comes up with a plan to make all his lies the truth and build his dream of Fox’s Palace. He makes some poor choices and tricks people into trying and making his dream a reality, but in the end, he discovers it doesn’t pay to lie and cheat people.

Children’s author Tuula Pere has written yet another fantastic and meaningful children’s book. This story teaches kids about the value of being honest and how being untruthful will only cause more considerable trouble in the end. Francis learns this by ending up in jail. While the message is important, it is told gently so that kindergarten children and young elementary students can comprehend it.

I loved the artwork done by Andrea Alemanno, the seaside was beautiful, and the characters really came to life. The colorful images will draw in children and the detailed work will keep them engaged throughout the story. Despite Francis being a sneaky fox, he does not come across as scary or evil. This helps to show that even when people make bad choices, they are not bad people. Mayor William Wolf allows Francis to see what he did was wrong and forgives him while ensuring that the fox knows he can not treat people so poorly.

Tuula Pere has taken some challenging topics and presented them so that children can follow along and understand actions have consequences. This beautiful children’s book would make a great addition to a classroom or library with an important message on how people should treat one another and the value of honesty.

Pages: 44 | ISBN : 9523572865

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Mickey on the Move Farming

A young boy is born with deafness in both ears, he wants to do all the things that children with hearing do though. His family gets him Cochlear implants but they can not get wet. He enjoys life on the farm and his dad’s wine vineyard helping out, especially helping with the chickens. However, things like swimming and playing in the rain are impossible because his implants will get broken if they get wet. Keeping his ears dry can be challenging when there are things like sprinklers, water for the animals, and unpredictable rain storms.

Then one day he gets Aqua Cochlear and his life changes! These new implants can get wet! Now he can play in the rain, go swimming, and no longer has to worry about getting his ears wet. Being on the farm has never been so much fun.

Mickey on the Move Farming by Michelle Wagner and illustrated by Jenny Phelps is a touching story about a little boy that has his life improved with Aqua Cochlear. This picture book explains to children what a Cochlear implant device is and does so in a way that is easy to understand for even young kids. The simple explanations accompanied by the creative and colorful illustrations will help children to understand what the Cochlear device is. Mickey goes on adventures many children enjoy from fishing and swimming to playing in the rain.

The thing that parents and teachers will love about this book is that it explains how special needs children are still normal kids. They sometimes have the medical equipment to help them do the things other children do. It does not mean they do not desire to have the same fun and adventures as their classmates and friends. This is a wonderful way to teach inclusion and diversity to younger elementary-age students.

Pages: 38 | ASIN : B0B33N3TGF

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The Tree House Night

Emma and Oliver are best friends that live next door to each other. They decide they are going to build a treehouse in the backyard between their homes. Oliver is apprehensive, but Emma encourages him to help her make it. At one point, Oliver decides he is uncomfortable with the treehouse and refuses to climb up and leaves Emma to finish the job herself. Once it is finished, she proudly shows her work off to her parents and tells them she wants to spend the night up in the tree. They tell her no, it is not safe. Later, Oliver climbs up the tree to talk to her and tells her he heard what she said and wants to support her plan. That night when Emma sneaks out to stay in the treehouse, Oliver watches over her from his bedroom window.

The Tree House Night, written by Tuula Pere, is another fantastic work by this author. This excellent picture book focuses on friendship. Two friends who do not always agree still find a way to remain friends and focus on what matters, supporting each other in their dreams and goals. Even though Oliver disagrees with Emma’s plan, he supports her in the only way he can, shining light and watching over her as she sleeps in the treehouse. Knowing her best friend is watching over her gives Emma the strength to overcome her fears of the dark and the noises she hears.

So many children’s books on friendship focus on the good times children have. I like that this book showed that friends do not have to always agree on the same things or have the same goals. Even with these differences, they can still support one another and help each other make their dreams come true. This is the beauty of people. They don’t all have to be the same or have the same ideas and goals to be kind and be friends. This excellent picture book shows children they can be friends with people different from themselves and support one another.

The artwork done by Catty Flores is genuinely superb. The characters have so much personality children who can’t read will still be able to feel Oliver’s mood as he is concerned about things happening. But, equally, Emma’s excitement and confidence radiate off the pages as she builds her dream treehouse. The bond they share shines through the pages, and children will relate to the images presented in this captivating story.

The Tree House Night is a beautifully written picture book with an inspirational message about friendship and supporting those you care for. Children, teachers, and parents will all enjoy reading this remarkable story and will be able to relate to the message that the author has presented.

Pages: 32 | ASIN : B09K6MNF52

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SOS Champion Captain

There isn’t much Nora can’t do–and do well. She’s her school’s captain, and if there is a prize offered or medal to be won, she has claimed it for her own. So when she and her classmates find out about the newest competition to build a model pirate ship, she just knows this will be another easy win for her. However, Nora soon learns this is to be a group project, something she is not comfortable with, as she is not the one in control of everything. So will this be the one competition Nora actually can’t win? Or will she be able to pull it together for the sake of her group members?

SOS Champion Captain, by children’s author Cameron Stelzer, is one in a series of the School of Scallywags books. Nora, champion of virtually everything, is the main character and is in for a difficult lesson on how to treat others. She is used to being recognized as the best in all she does, and when things don’t go her way, and she loses her temper, the group project suffers. Nora must learn about acceptance, tolerance, and unity in order for her group to be able to finish building the pirate ship. This is a common issue for many children, they feel their worth is tied to their achievements. Learning teamwork is hard and this entertaining book teaches kids the value of working together.

My third graders are going to love this book–our class theme is pirates, and Nora and her crew fit right in! I love that Nora and the other characters struggle with some of the same issues as my students–the strong love of hot chips and the stress of group projects. Stelzer’s characters are undoubtedly relatable for young readers, and the fantasy setting of the School of Scallywags is sure to draw readers in from the first pages.

SOS Champion Captain is a captivating children’s book for those kids in the second to fifth-grade reading levels. Nora and the other members of the School of Scallywags will delight readers with their relatable feelings and life lessons. This book will make a great addition to both school and classroom libraries.

Pages: 98 | ISBN : 0645133132

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From an Oval

Izzy wants to draw a dog to be his friend and to play with. However, he soon discovers that the oval he drew to start his dog had a different idea about what it will become. When Izzy threw a ball for the oval animal instead of chasing after it, they said Baa Baa and ate a whole in the paper. Izzy became frustrated and told the animal no, you are a dog, but it insisted it was going to be a sheep no matter what Izzy wanted. In the end, Izzy accepts the sheep, and they learn how to have fun together.

From an Oval, written by Najah A. Jabbar, is a creative children’s book that captures the magic of a child’s imagination. The antics of the oval animal as it struggles to be heard is an excellent comparison for children. Kids often want to have some control over their situation, so the sheep is a relatable character. They will understand the animal’s frustration about not being seen for who they are and the desire to be themselves. They will also learn to be accepting of those around them even when they are different from what they anticipate.

Bringing this story to life are the playful illustrations by DeNeal Fletcher. The whimsical images give personality to the oval sheep. The sketch-like drawings are done in a manner that children will be able to see themselves creating, turning their own shapes into new animal best friends.

From an Oval in the From a Shape Izzy Book Series is a magical picture book that preschool and kindergarten children will enjoy and be entertained by. Young kids will see how imagination can lead to creativity and exploring new ideas. This would also be an excellent book for art teachers to use to introduce draw to elementary-age students.

Pages: 33 | ASIN : B09SKC2DF2

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