Tag: picture books

An irresistible collection of teeny, tiny, extraordinarily big family adventures

The brand new children’s book, Atlas of Miniature Adventures is the most charming, wonderful, travel-meets-trivia book. Author Emily Hawkins and illustrator Lucy Letherland sure know how get even the most cynical, “can’t we just stay on the couch and play video games?” couch potato excited to explore the world. (If only via Google.) The colorful, engaging pages take us across all 7 continents, with descriptions of fabulous adventures and natural treasures — but the catch is, they’re all in miniature. Irresistible! You’ll find short descriptions of diverse destinations, both natural and manmade, including the exquisite 1930 fairy castle dollhouse in Chicago’s Museum of...

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We’re All Wonders: Now, R.J. Palacio shares Auggie’s message with younger children too.

A few years ago, R.J. Palacio gave the world Wonder, a middle reader book that we here at Cool Mom Picks believe should be mandatory reading for all children and their parents, which is why we named it among our best children’s books of 2015. The truly moving novel about August (Auggie) Pullman, a boy who was born with a congenital facial abnormality and was heading to school for the first time in the fifth grade, is an important reminder to kids that everyone needs understanding, deserves friendship, and should feel free to be themselves. We couldn’t be more excited that this week,...

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When words aren’t enough: A goodbye to Amy Krouse Rosenthal

It’s always a strange and complex feeling to feel the loss of someone you’ve never actually met, but that’s just what I feel right now, learning of today’s passing of author and mom of three, Amy Krouse Rosenthal. This is one woman who definitely left us way too soon. F*ck cancer is right. While a lot of you may have learned her name recently, as the author of the unforgettable You May Want to Marry My Husband Modern Love column in the NY Times, we’ve known her for years as a remarkable children’s author who has filled our kids’ bookshelves with the kinds of titles you...

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6 wonderful children’s books about African-American pioneers your children may not know — yet

It’s safe to say that during Black History Month in particular, our children are learning all about our nation’s great civil rights leaders, like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks and Frederick Douglass. But, if you’ve seen (or, heck, even heard about) the film Hidden Figures, it’s been an awakening for a lot of parents and educators that there are so many more African-American pioneers who deserve the spotlight too. Even my mother-in-law, an 83-year-old Black woman, had never heard of Katherine Goble Johnson, Mary Jackson, or Dorothy Vaughan — the brilliant women who were instrumental in helping launch the first U.S. astronaut into orbit. Thankfully, that’s...

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What did Frederick Douglass do? This wonderful book helps kids find out.

This week, I am under the impression, for some reason, that lots of folks are searching for information on Frederick Douglass: Who was Frederick Douglass? What did he do that was so important? How did he earn a place in the new Smithsonian African-American history museum? If you’re a parent or educator, this is a good opportunity to rush to your local library, Amazon, or your local bookstore. Then check out the brand new biography picture book, Frederick Douglass: The Lion Who Wrote History, by the late Walter Dean Myers. Related: 10 outstanding Black History Month books for kids of all...

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9 lovely children’s books about the immigrant experience to help encourage more kindness and empathy.

I’m a child of an immigrant. And so I jumped at the chance to put together a list of some of my favorite children’s books about the immigrant experience. I know first-hand just how difficult it is for someone to get to America for a better life and work toward citizenship, let alone having to leave their homeland, family members, and the only life they’ve known behind, sometimes forever. With immigration a big topic in our country right now, our children are hearing about these issues too. They have so many questions, whether they’re watching the news with you, discussing it in...

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Congrats to the 2017 Caldecott, Newbery, and Coretta Scott King medal winners. They are truly award-worthy!

Today, there’s excitement about the Oscar nominations, but yesterday was the Academy Awards for book lovers. The ALA made its big announcement of the books worthy of the annual Caldecott, Newbery, and Coretta Scott King medal winners, as well as many other notable awards, for children’s lit and young adult books. We are really excited to see that some of our very own recommendations have been honored. They truly deserve it. Related: 18 best children’s books of 2016 | Editors’ Best of 2016 CMP is an rstyle and Amazon affiliate Awarded the 2017 John Newbery Medal The prize given for the most outstanding contribution to...

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A trio of fantastic STEM-inspired picture books that celebrate curious children.

Often, some of the very best children’s books are the ones inspired by a writer’s own child (like Mo Willems’ Knuffle Bunny). These books tend to be favorites among kids and parents alike because they come from a place of authenticity. Which is why I think families will love Andrea Beaty’s trio of STEM-inspired picture books, which was created from the author’s personal experience with her young son who would build things, anything, from random things. The series isn’t new; in fact, the first book published a decade ago. But she continues to add to the series every few years, which is a big...

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An excellent list of MLK books, videos and resources to help kids understand the reason for the holiday.

Over the years, we’ve put together so many fantastic ways to help honor the important, impactful work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., especially to help families be able to discuss how we might all carry on his legacy. We hope you’ll check out these books, videos, websites, craft ideas and activities, with the hope that more of our kids are inspired do their own part to create a world filled with peace, equality and justice for all.   4 Fantastic Books for Kids about Martin Luther King to Help Educate While You Celebrate Here’s his entire I Have a Dream...

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10 outstanding children’s books about activism in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

As we approach MLK Day, we’re thinking it’s the perfect time to get our kids learning about activism and about how one man, through his peaceful and steadfast fight for equal rights for all, made lasting changes and a huge impact on generations. Inspired by his words — “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere” — and motivated by his actions, we’ve put together a list of 10 children’s books about activism that we think will inspire our kids, in turn. From stories our littlest readers will enjoy to non-fiction books that motivate our older kids to take action about those things they believe in, we...

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18 best children’s books of 2016 | Editors’ Best of 2016

As the year comes to a close, we’re looking back at our picks for the best children’s books of 2016 — according to our editors, writers, and of course our children! What a perfect way to kick off our Editors Picks of the Year. As our readers know, we all adore books here at Cool Mom Picks and we’ve collectively read hundreds of great kids’ books this year, from the sweetest board books for babies, to excellent picture books for early readers, to compelling graphic novels  — and it’s not an easy job to whittle it down to just a few favorites. Ultimately, we go with the books...

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Just Like Me: A book subscription box created for children of color who want to see themselves in the books they read, too.

I did the research, and in 2013, out of 3,200 children’s books published, only 93 featured African American characters. Sadly, that’s even more than I had expected. And the numbers aren’t much better for other races and ethnicities. Thankfully, campaigns like #WeNeedDiverseBooks and #1000blackgirlbooks have brought some awareness and change to the publishing industry, which I’m definitely cheering — I know that moms of all kinds would love to fill their kids’ bookshelves with more diverse stories about more diverse characters. But as the mother of two biracial girls, this is really personal for me. That’s why I’m thrilled to find the new Just Like Me! Book Box, a monthly...

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Roy Lichtenstein meets Dick and Jane

I’m always a sucker for books for toddlers and early readers that make use of modern art. We’ve covered Where’s Warhol (a Where’s Waldo parody) most recently, Henri Matisse and Alexander Calder pop-up books, and now there’s a cool new one — Roy’s House, by Susan Goldman Rubin with art by Roy Lichtenstein. Rubin’s simple, playful text welcomes readers, then takes us on a tour through Lichtenstein’s iconic pop art, which combine to make up quite the house when viewed all together. His infamous paintings of interiors introduce us to a great big couch for entertaining many friends, a kitchen for snacking, and the studio where “Roy paints pictures.”...

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Sponsored Message: Celebrating a brand new Rosemary Wells book with a $250 giveaway

This is a sponsored message from MacMillan In honor of the launch of Hand in Hand, the beautiful new book from popular kids’ author Rosemary Wells of Max and Ruby fame, you could win a special $250 literary prize pack, plus everyone who enters wins a special magnet with art from this new book. Perfect gift for a baby shower, new baby, or first birthday, Hand in Hand celebrates the sweet joys of being your child’s first teacher, and all the moments you share, whether walking together, playing, dreaming, and of course, reading together. And oh the reading you’ll be able to do with...

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Taro Gomi delights again with this new book series for preschoolers

We could not be more excited that famed Japanese author-illustrator, Taro Gomi (you know him, the author behind the widely popular Everyone Poops), recently released a new boxed set called Growing Together. We think it’s the perfect gift for a graduating preschooler who is “all grown up,” and ready to take on the world. The set is intended for children ages 2–4 and includes four small books, each titled after a central task of childhood: Growing, Sharing, Imagining, and Exploring. Related: Amazing Water: The educational book + CD about classical music that actually is amazing. Of course these developmental hurdles can be a challenge, especially...

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5 inspiring new picture books for National Readathon Day that make kids want to get out and play

As someone who grew up with her nose in a book, I sure spent a lot of time hearing my parents tell me to put down that book and go outside to play! So in honor of today’s National Readathon Day, I’ve rounded up five wonderful new picture books for kids that not only make great stories but also inspire kids to get outdoors and explore this big, beautiful world. Because if there’s one thing that I’ve learned, it’s that books do a darn good job of expanding our world views way beyond the walls and comfort of our homes. Related: 3 brand...

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D is for Dress-Up: Not the alphabet book you’d think it is

When I receive a book with the subtitle, The ABC’s of What We Wear I admit I’m thinking oh great, another “boys like transportation, girls like fashion” book. But it turns out I am utterly charmed by Maria Carluccio’s D is for Dress-Up, which uses her texturally rich illustrations to take early readers through the alphabet, from Apron and Bow Tie to Yoga Pants and Zippers. (No judgment here about yoga pants, by the way. It’s just kids doing yoga in them.) I absolutely love the authentic diversity of the children depicted throughout the book by artist and textile designer Carluccio. She’s...

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Mo Willems’ new Thank You Book: Why you’ll be grateful for it too.

I was super excited to hear about Mo Willems latest, The Thank You Book, a new adventure in friendship between Gerald and Piggie that’s launching today. The one downside: this is the 25th and final book in the Elephant & Piggie series (say it ain’t so, Mo!) so this is one you Willems fans will definitely want to get your hands on. I mean, for your kids. Related: How Mo Willems can help decorate your child’s room The book is really a lesson in gratitude, something all kids can stand to learn over and over. In the story, Piggie feels so overwhelmed with gratitude that he plans a “Thank-o-rama” to tell...

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Flora and the Peacocks: A simply glorious picture book

If you’re already a fan of Molly Idle’s other popular children’s picture books, Flora and the Penguin and Flora and the Flamingo, then you’re in for a treat with the brand new Flora and the Peacocks. It’s part wordless picture book, part lift-the-flap interactive book, and all parts wonderful. Here, Flora is back with a pair of marvelous peacocks, as you may have guessed from the title. She tries to dance with them, mimic them, play with them…but it’s not quite as easy as she thinks. Three can be a crowd, as we’ve learned — and I’d imagine even young children...

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Making chemistry more fun with My First Science Textbooks

Anyone of us parents who can still recite the Preamble to the Constitution thanks to the animated shorts of Schoolhouse Rock knows how much kids can learn (and retain) when information is presented in the right way, a.k.a, learning without realizing you’re learning. So, we are so intrigued by a series of beginner chemistry books that hope to make the behaviors of protons, neutrons, and atoms as absorbable as, say, the superpowers of Spiderman. My First Science Textbooks by Genius Games founder John Coveyou is currently blowing up Kickstarter by reaching over 10 times its goal. Clearly, there are a lot of us parents who want...

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