One of the great pleasures of being a teacher is discovering the many beautiful new story books to read aloud to our students. This Autumn, we’ve found some fabulous books about that the children have really enjoyed listening to in class.
Wonderfall by Michael Hall. In this delightful play on words, Wonderfall is told from the perspective of an oak tree. It takes concepts such as “peaceful” or “dutiful” and changes them to “peacefall” or “dutifall.” The oak tree goes on to explain what it means by each idea with respect to seasonal changes and the advent of autumn leading to winter. The pictures are bright and colourful, with repetition of a similar shape (in this case the oak leaves) to other books by Michael Hall (My Heart is Like a Zoo and Perfect Square).
Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn by Kenard Pak. I had originally read this book at Kidsbook in the Village at the end of this summer and was amazed with the watercolour illustrations. The main character takes a walk greeting the animals and signs of nature such as the wind, flowers and leaves. In response, each one “greets” her back and explains how they are getting ready for all. The attention to detail on the animals and small figures is amazing, right down to the coffee sign in the village as our protagonist strolls through her neighbourhood.
Because of an Acorn by Lola M. Schaefer, Adam Schaefer and Frann Preston-Gannon. This is a wonderfully illustrated book that integrates cause and effect in seemingly innocuous natural events. For example, because of a fallen acorn, a tree grows in its place. The story continues in this way, incorporating wildlife and and plants, and demonstrates the beauty and harmony of the ecosystem.
The Secret Life of Squirrels by Nancy Rose. Okay, this book brought the house down. The children were laughing hysterically (we had to call to order at least three times) about the antics of Mr. Peanuts, the squirrel, in this beautifully photographed book. The author-photographer sets up little vignettes around her home and waits for the curious squirrels to come by and visit. She’s waiting with her camera to photograph these dear little animals. Mr. Peanuts, and friends, are among her actors.
All of our books were purchased through Scholastic Book Clubs.