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I often find myself going to my son’s bookshelves to select a few of my favorite book titles to buy for the new baby and parents.
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Originally written in 1893 for Noel Moore, the five-year-old son of Potter’s former governess, this family favourite was reworked and privately printed by Potter in 1901 following several rejections from publishers. This week is Banned Books Week and I wish I could say that no picture books are ever banned but sadly that is not the case . The Family Book by Todd Parr is a book that doesn’t give readers a narrow definition of family , it doesn’t say that your family has to look a certain way, or be the same as your neighbors.
This book wasn’t banned 10 years ago it was just recently banned from use for an elementary school curriculum about diversity, tolerance and bullying. This picture book was the most frequently challenged and banned book of 2010, 2008, 2007 and 2006.
In the Night Kitchen (Caldecott Collection) by Maurice Sendak is one of the many books I remember exactly where I was when I first read it ; Coquitlam Public Library sitting in the shag carpeted row boat amazed that the main character Mickey had no clothes . Sylvester and the Magic Pebble by William Steig is a book many of you may recognize from your own childhood . Sign up above and receive all new No Time for Flashcards posts directly in your email inbox. If it makes you feel better I did use more colorful language when I was reading some of the sources . I agree with you, that validating the truth is important and recognizing that families are different. The fact of the matter is alternative families ARE a part of our Canadian society now, and they have just as much of a right to be portraied in literature as anyone else.
You are absolutely right, I have many conversations I need to have with my children before school starts! My goodness like so many of the comments above, Thank you for filling out a reading list for me!!! We have a lot of gay couples as parents at our school so this book is perfect for kids in the context of understanding our differences.
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Parents are by far the most frequent challengers and school libraries are by far the most frequent place to make a challenge.  I hope no matter what your personal feelings about a book may be that you are as outraged as I am that books are still being banned in this day and age. As a mom to a son I worry about him getting teased when he is older if he isn’t into sports, or likes to bake cookies more than play video games. The reasons given were gay positive themes.  As you will see that is unfortunately a recurrent theme on this short list.
It’s the true story of two male penguins in central park zoo who didn’t have any interest in the girl penguins but definitely liked each other. Mickey falls out of bed and into the night kitchen where the bakers try to bake him and ultimately he saves the day and falls back into bed and back to sleep. We are planning a special In the Night Kitchen activity in honor of banned book week – have been meaning to do it the last couple of nights, but I will definitely do it tonight or tomorrow night – cannot wait to share it!

Sylvester and the magic pebble is one of the most emotional and evocative children’s books I have read with my son. So, I decided to chronicle our favorite children’s books here so I could have a nice go-to list. However, rest assured that our affiliate relationships do not guide our product recommendations, at all. I know that some of you aren’t comfortable reading some or maybe all of these books with your kids and as a parent you get to make the rules at your house for your family and I respect that. Kids see that families are not all like theirs and it’s important to validate the truth while recognizing that while they may not all look alike, all families are made with love.  Great book , cute illustrations and children love it. When the zoo keepers noticed that they were in every way a matched pair they also noticed that they prepared for a baby just like the other penguins.
For me this story is about power and freedom and how kids don’t get to feel that day to day but free from reality at night in their sleep they can. Sylvester is a little donkey who finds a magic pebble and after discovering that it grants wishes he makes a terrible mistakes and turns himself into a rock. We are all capable of setting rules for our own families that fit with our own boundaries but banning books from schools and libraries is not the answer. I especially love how the dad isn’t super happy that his son is into more traditionally girly things. The issue was with it’s pages that state that some families have 2 moms and some have 2 dads.
Even as a little girl giggling at the pictures in the book I read the words and felt the freedom from being little that Mikey felt. As a rock he is unable to wish himself back into a donkey and is left to sit silently while his parents are frantic, search and finally grieve. We live in an area where there are many different kinds of families and I want her to grow up having compassion and understanding of all people, no matter the color of their skin (she is bi-racial) or their sexual preference. That one book that you may disagree with may be the one book that sparks a love of reading and learning for a child . I think that even though we hope that all parents would be immediately supportive the reality is, that parents are human too and acceptance can take time even when there is lots of love.
It makes me sad that some children who do have 2 moms or 2 dads won’t get a chance to see their family reflected in this bright, fun and diverse book. Just like all families love and care is what matters when creating a family and baby Tango and his two daddies have thrived . McGregor." WIND IN THE WILLOWS (1908) By Kenneth Grahame (8 March 1859 - 6 July 1932) Since its first publication, this tale of friendship and moral growth has been issued in more than 100 editions, with annual sales figures reaching the hundreds of thousands. I was sorta hoping he’d be more mature than I was at 5, we always expect the best from our kids right? The obvious message that you have to be careful what you wish for is a powerful one for kids learning about consequences.
To see that all people are unique and to respect everyone for that uniqueness not for their ability to fit some societal mold.
Like me he still got the heart of the story and even expressed that Mickey was naked because he was dreaming and got to do whatever he wanted. The other messages which for us were the more important ones were that  family bonds can break through anything and that no matter what even if he is a rock I would never give up on him.
Their story simplifies a very debated topic and I think it’s a great book not only to explain how all families are different but also how love and care are really what makes a family even for penguins.

Nesbit (15 August 1858 – 4 May 1924) When their father is wrongfully imprisoned for selling state secrets to the Russians, Roberta, Peter and Phyllis move with their mother to a house by the railway for a life of make-do and mend in the country. A stage adaptation of the story was performed at the National Railway Museum in to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the celebrated film after the book.
Meeting one summer on Wildcat Island, the children form an alliance against the Blacketts’ irritable Uncle Jim, whom they believe to be a retired pirate. After days spent sailing, camping and fishing and drinking ginger beer, the allies hatch a plan to seize Uncle Jim’s houseboat and force him to walk the plank.
With a band of new pals including Moon-face, The Saucepan Man and Mr Watzisname, the children embark on various adventures in the magical lands lurking at the top of the tree. Unsurprisingly, the Lands of Birthdays, Goodies and Do-As-You-Please became particular favourites with young readers. The titles in the series are The Enchanted Wood (1939), The Magic Faraway Tree (1943), The Folk of the Faraway Tree (1946) and Up the Faraway Tree (1951). Edmund's transition from self-interested schoolboy to heroic young man is also resonantly spiritual.
Perhaps the most famous was about his tall, anthropomorphic, mischievous cat, sporting a tall, red and white-striped hat and a red bow tie.
With the series of Beginner Books that The Cat inaugurated, Numerous adaptations of his work have been created, including eleven television specials, three feature films, and a Broadway musical and Seuss was a great advocate of the fun of reading for children. The book's sequel, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, was written by Roald Dahl in 1972. Carle’s mouth-watering illustrations have made this quirky story a bedtime staple, and 10,000 children still write to Carle every year.
It has been translated into more than 50 languages and its sales have now surpassed the 30 million mark. The book was inspired by a hole puncher, as Carle recalled: "One day I was punching holes with a hole puncher into a stack of paper, and I thought of a bookworm and so I created a story called 'A Week with Willi the Worm'.
On Monday, he ate through one apple." MR MEN (1971) Roger Hargreaves (9 May 1935 - 11 September 1988) Intended for very young readers, the Mr Men books comprised 48 books in all and they joined later by a series of 42 Little Miss books. With silly stories, bright-coloured, boldly drawn illustrations, they have been part of popular culture for over 25 years, with sales over 100 million worldwide in 15 languages. Among the funniest character were Mr Forgetful, Mr Fussy, Mr Lazy and Mr Grumpy - not forgetting Little Miss Chatterbox and Little Miss Trouble.
To celebrate the 25th anniversary, Rod Campbell, a Scottish writer and illustrator with a doctorate in organix chemistry, refreshed the original artwork to give Dear Zoo an updated and fresh look.
Dear Zoo is a "lift the flap book" about, in case you hadn't guessed, a letter to the zoo from a child who wants a pet. Children and adults alike remain transfixed by half-blood Harry, haphazard Ron Weasley and overachieving Hermione Granger as they struggle to stop Lord Voldemort conquering the Wizarding and Muggle worlds. The Potter phenomenon has its detractors, but the success of special 'grown-up' covers, allowing commuters to read Rowling without shame, tells its own tale.

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