Tag: books

Someone Special Books: Personalized books for kids with special needs of all kinds. Like making friends.

We love personalized books for kids, which always make special gifts for the kid who has everything. Also, what child doesn’t need more books in his or her library? But now we’ve discovered a publisher creating personalized books made just for kids with special needs and conditions, from Down Syndrome to Autism to food allergies and ADHD. This is simply a fantastic find for so many families and classrooms. The customizable books from authors Heather McCartney and Kate Ryan of Someone Special Books allow you to choose the appropriate title, then insert details like your child’s name, birthday, friends, or favorite activities, which are all incorporated into the rhyming text. But...

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Superhero Comic Kit: A BIG way for kids to write their very own BIG comics. Did we mention they’re big?

Our superhero-loving kids are going to leap over a tall building to get their hands on The Superhero Comic Kit, an activity book that gives them the chance to write and illustrate their very own comic books. No super skills required, only an active imagination, which we’re pretty sure is their super power anyway. And, wow, will their imagination have a place to play on the pages of this (very) oversized, uniquely hands-on book by British illustrator Jason Ford, also the author of The Super Book for Super Heroes which we love. In his latest release, Ford takes kids through all the...

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Our favorite cool tech picks this week

Here are 5 of our favorite tech picks this week from Cool Mom Tech. Look what you might have missed!   1. It’s here! Our Back to School Tech Guide! First up, the best organizational apps for parents. 2. Our thoughts on this new phone wristwatch for kids. Could it change the way you get in touch? 3. A cool new app for kids that teaches them about STEM too. Love! 4. Need book recommendations for your kids? You’ll want to bookmark these 5 websites. 5. The phone-brella. Because of course you need to be able to use your...

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What Does it Mean to Be Kind? | A perfect children’s book for our time.

If you ever pick up a newspaper in front of your children, turn on the news, or even have an adult conversation about the day’s events, there’s no doubt that they are aware in some way of the tensions, divisiveness and frankly, ugliness, in our world right now. As parents, we’re always thinking about ways to explain it all, and ideally, to make our kids part of positive solutions as they learn how to live their best selves. And now our friends at Little Pickle Press have released a new book around the simple theme of kindness, that couldn’t have come at a more perfect...

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We’ve got 21 of the coolest coloring books for adults. Pass those markers over, kids.

It’s so easy to find yourself on-the-go all the time as a parent, but having downtime is important. In fact, I think it’s vital to being a good mom or dad. Of course, a few hours alone to get a manicure or go for a walk is so nice, but I like to find ways to unwind with my kids too. That’s why I’ve been absolutely thrilled to see adult coloring books blow up, and I’m fascinated by research I’ve seen lately saying that coloring happens to be a really effective way for adults to relax. So if you need a break from crosswords or Netflix or...

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13 great fantasy and adventure books for tweens. Get ready to buy the sequels!

My ten-year-old is the kind of kid who is still reading in bed long after his siblings have fallen asleep. But it can be hard to keep up with his pace, and continue finding age-appropriate fantasy and adventure books that tweens like him will be excited about. I mean, he really tears through them. If you’re in the same boat, I’ve put together some excellent fantasy and adventure books for tweens that we’ve loved at our house, and a few our local bookstore has recommended that we can’t wait to try. And hey, even if your child isn’t tearing through longer chapter...

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The Day the Crayons Came Home: The must-have sequel to one of our favorite hilarious kids’ books

The Day the Crayons Quit, written by Drew Daywalt and illustrated by the amazing Oliver Jeffers, has been sitting on my kids’ bedside table — and getting read every night at bedtime — since the day it came home from the bookstore. It’s quickly become a classic that teaches kids to challenge the “rules” when it comes to creativity. No coloring inside the lines here. Daywalt encourages kids to think outside the (crayon) box in a really fun way. So when the sequel — The Day the Crayons Came Home — showed up in my mailbox, my kids immediately grabbed it to...

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Painting For Peace in Ferguson: A children’s book with a message of hope and community

This past Sunday, August 9, marked one year since the death of Michael Brown and the subsequent uprising in Ferguson, Missouri.  Despite the many months that have passed, trying to make sense of the heartbreak and horror of everything that’s happened in this country recently remains a challenge for so many us. Processing the racial injustice, the hate, the death and devastation is difficult, to say the least. And as parents trying to explain any of it to our children — so many of us don’t even have the words. This is where the children’s book Painting for Peace in Ferguson can...

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Fantastic tween books made into movies: 8 adventure-packed stories to help get older kids reading more.

We have no shortage of movie nights in the summer, but I would love to get my kids to crack open their books more often when school isn’t in session. And I think I’ve found a way to encourage them to read more while still keeping movie night on the calendar: I’m going to offer them great action and adventure filled tween books that were made into movies, with the caveat that we can only watch the movie afterwards. Whether you chose to read the titles aloud to your kids as a family story, or if your reader would rather finish the...

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Need an answer to I’m bored? How about 250 of them.

It may surprise readers of Cool Mom Tech, but I am pretty much a no-screens-in-the-car kind of a parent. Back when my youngest was still a toddler and four consecutive episodes of Dora meant a needed stretch of quiet. But now, unless it’s an extra extra long car ride, we have a pretty good roster of car games that do the trick. Until I run out. Which is why I’m thrilled to have a copy of Amanda Morin’s new On-the-Go Fun for Kids: More than 250 activities to keep little ones busy and happy anytime, anywhere.  250, mamas. That’s a lot of ideas....

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How to talk to your kids about prejudice with the help of 12 of our favorite books

It’s been a big few weeks for America, hasn’t it? From the heartbreak of the Charleston shootings to the landmark #LoveWins Supreme Court decision to the Girl Scouts donor dust-up, people everywhere are talking about prejudice. While I’ve seen such a beautiful swell of love, support and compassion for all kinds of people all over my social media this past month, I’ve also talked to lots of moms who are wondering how to talk to kids about prejudice and racism. Because even as my kids help me pick out wedding presents for all our friends, prejudice most definitely still exists whether it’s because of the color...

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The Princess and the Pony: A perfect princess book for a new generation

When you think of a princess book, and what the lead character wants, what springs to mind? Classically, the story would be about meeting her true love or escaping her horrible life to live in a luxe castle. Then we moved onto more modern princess books including my favorite, The Well at the End of the World, in which the princess demonstrates that beauty isn’t everything, and kindness, loyalty, and good math skills matter more. Well now there’s comic artist Kate Beaton’s brand new The Princess and the Pony, just out today, which brings a fantastic new twist to the genre....

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A beautiful bedtime book that captures the joy of childhood

It’s hard not to be completely smitten with the work of Brooklyn artist Ida Pearle as we have for ages. Her cut-paper illustrations beautifully capture the whimsy and joy of childhood. We loved her alphabet book A Child’s Day: An Alphabet of Play, and now she’s out with a new book called The Moon is Going to Addy’s House, a magical and unique look at bedtime. My kids are hooked. In this book, Addy has been at a playdate in the city and she’s headed home for bed. The family drives through the city, over the Brooklyn bridge, and toward their house in the country. The whole time, Addy...

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Primates of Park Avenue: A fascinating summer beach read, even if that beach isn’t in the Hamptons

Before it even hit the shelves, there was a swell of hype around Primates of Park Avenue, by Wednesday Martin. Specifically, whether this outrageous glimpse into the inner lives of über-wealthy moms on Manhattan’s Upper East Side is accurate at all. So I grabbed a copy at Amazon — and the irony of the $10 discount off the hardcover price for those of us middle-class gawkers looking to press our noses against the glass was not lost on me. I’ll get back to the accuracy point in a bit, but overall, I found the book equal parts intriguing and shocking. And I couldn’t put it down....

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11 beautiful pop-up books to bring reading to life in 3D, no technology required

Now that my kids are finally all old enough to know better than to rip out the cut-art from a pop-up book as I flip the pages for them, I’ve been looking around to find some new pop-up books to read to them. And wow, there are some really, really beautiful pop-up books for kids that have been published in the last year, along with some classics I still adore. These are books that I’m enjoying as much as the kids are, even as they give my children a glimpse into another world, teach them a wider appreciation for art, or are just super fun. One will...

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14 smart ways to get your young kids excited about reading this summer

As big-time book lovers here, we’ve learned that a love of reading is acquired and not something kids are necessarily born with, like the color of their eyes or their uncanny inability to sleep past 6 AM on a Saturday. So we love putting together tips for parents on ways to get kids excited about reading — and ideally, keep them reading — especially now that summer is here and we all get a little more lax about things like that. Plus, our bookshelves do tend to have some stiff competition with all that extra daylight after dinner. One of our top ideas,...

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The coolest gifts for Grandpas: Father’s Day Gift Guide 2015

Next up in our 2015 Father’s Day gift guide, are some of the coolest gifts for grandpas. Or grandfathers. Or papas, pop-pops…you know, that awesome patriarch in your family. We’ve got a fun range for you from thoughtful gifts from the grandkids, to spendier gifts that make a big statement, should he need a little extra love this year. And of course, don’t forget the card. Whatever the gift, they’re nearly always the best part. And hey, don’t miss our fabulous (seriously, like all-caps worthy FABULOUS) $800 Father’s Day gift guide giveaway below. Entering is easy and we think, totally...

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Let Neil Gaiman take your kids to the beach this summer.

When you hear about a Neil Gaiman book for kids, you might assume it will be along the lines of Coraline or at least his Hansel & Gretel book, but nope. Gaiman is prolific (if you weren’t yet aware of that) and this time he’s pairing with illustrator Adam Rex again for the third in the series of Chu’s Day books, sweetly titled Chu’s Day at the Beach. There isn’t a hint of darkness in it at all. Just a magical reality set in motion by the Panda known for his gigantic sneeze, taking a seemingly ordinary trip to the beach. Related: Neil Gaiman’s Children’s Book: The...

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DoodleLit by Jennifer Adams and Alison Oliver: Because, Mr. Darcy coloring pages.

Every once in a while I come across a kids’ book I love as much (or more) than my kids do. It’s even more rare with board books, but the brilliantly creative BabyLit board books by Jennifer Adams and Alison Oliver are definitely on that list. I have to admit, the English major in me swells just a little bit when I get to read my children playful interpretation of books like Pride and Prejudice or Moby Dick, only for babies.  So I was intrigued when I heard about their newest creation: the clever DoodleLit guided coloring book designed for BabyLit readers’ older siblings. It features nearly 300 pages of coloring...

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When Lyla Got Lost (and Found): A really helpful safety book for kids

I know that teaching my kids about personal safety is so important, but there seems to be a fine line between preparing kids for emergencies and scaring them about Things That Could Happen. Like all parents, I definitely don’t want to tell them more than they need to hear. But lately we’ve been getting our talks just right with the help of reading When Lyla Got Lost (and Found), the latest in The Mother Company’s new series of safety books for kids. Thanks to authors Abbie Schiller and Samantha Kurtzman-Counter, my kids are learning some great safety strategies that will work for them in the real world,...

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