Kid Lit: Animal Adventures

It doesn’t matter what type – dog, cat, fish, hermit crab (a recent addition to our home) , giraffe, elephant or dinosaur – my kidlets love to read stories about animals.  This month’s Kit Lit review features two stories about animals that take place in very different settings — one living in the urban jungle of the city and the other out in the country on a farm.

THM-KidLit-LittleElliot-BigCity-BookJacketLittle Elliot, Big City By Mike Curato (Macmillan)

Little Elliot is an adorable little polka-dotted elephant living in the wilds of New York City circa 1940.  Amid the hustle and bustle of life in the big city with big crowds and even bigger buildings, Little Elliot leads a happy and quiet, but solitary life.

In spite of the daily challenges he faces for being little, Elliot finds many wonderful things to enjoy—like cupcakes! And when his problems seem insurmountable, Elliot discovers something even sweeter, a new friend.

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Kid Lit: Back To School Books #BTS

Whether your children are going to preschool for the first time, entering kindergarten or another elementary school grade, going back to school (BTS) can be both an exciting and daunting experience for children. Reading books about BTS can help ease children’s nerves and reassure them about starting school, going to a brand new school or even entering a new grade.

Here are few of our family favs:


The Pout Pout Fish Goes To School (Macmillian)

Mr. Fish is nervously awaiting his first day of school, and he flub-flubs, blub-blubs and counts off his troubles of not knowing how to write his name, how to draw shapes and how to do math.Continue reading ⇒

Kid Lit: Rufus Goes To School Review & Giveaway

Sometimes heading back to school can be scary, especially for younger children who aren’t quite sure what to expect.  Take my son for example. You ask him about school last year and he’ll tell you that he totally mastered kindergarten.  Ask him about going into the first grade this fall with a new teacher, new classmates and a new classroom routine and he’ll tell you that he’s nervous.

To ease his jitters and to help transition him smoothly back into learning mode, The Hubs and I have been reading him lots of “going to school” or “back to school” books. The one my son has asked us to read him the most (and sometimes he’ll even read along with us) is Rufus Goes To School from Sterling Children’s Books, written by Kim T Griswell and illustrated by Valeri Gorbachev.

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Kit Lit – We Go Together!

With back to school just around the corner, The Hubs and I have upped the ante on our daily reading with the kidlets to help ease them back in the learning groove. This week on The Harried Mom I’ll be featuring Kit Lit – books appropriate for younger readers, aged 3 to 7.

Today’s book is We Go Together! from Sterling Children’s Books, written by Todd Dunn and illustrated by Miki Sakamoto.

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My Country, Tis of Thee – Golden Records Presents: American Patriotic Songs Review & Giveaway

Teaching kids about what it means to be an American is more than history and dates that they learn out of a textbook. It’s about pride, emotion, duty and commitment to our country. I love that some of the first lessons that both of my kidlets learned in pre-school was to recite the Pledge of Allegiance and sing patriotic songs such as “You’re A Grand Old Flag” and “God Bless America.”

KidsWithFlagOne of my all-time favs of the kidlets, helping dad hang up the Flag in the front yard

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Kid Lit: Peppa Pig and the Muddy Puddles New Hardcover Book Review

I’ve come across a lot of talking pigs in my life — Ms. Piggy from “The Muppets”, Piglet from Winnie-the-Pooh, Porky  Pig from “Looney Toons” and even Wilbur from Charlotte’s Web – but I’ve never met a smarter, more well-mannered and thoughtful one than Peppa Pig!

Peppa_PigIn case you are not familiar with Peppa Pig, it’s a British cartoon that jumped the pond and can be seen here in the US on Nick Jr.  It centers on the adventures of a giggly little girl pig named Peppa along with her family and friends.   Peppa Pig is a good character that is aimed at both pre-school and kindergarten-aged children.  As I mentioned earlier, she has impeccable manners and she teaches the values of family, friendship, fun and humor.

Peppa is now jumping off the small screen and into the pages of a great new hard-cover children’s book Peppa Pig and the Muddy Puddles from Candlewick Press.

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Minnie & Daisy BFF Book & Magazine Review + Giveaway!

Cuddling up with a good book has always been one my favorite things to do.  I love escaping into the worlds and lives of the people, either real or fictitious, that I’m reading about.   It doesn’t matter if it’s a book that I’m reading myself or one that I’m reading aloud to my kidlets –I start imagining myself as the person in the story and even start reading in their “voice,” which brings much delight to my kids! I ’m thrilled that they also enjoy books and listening to stories.

My kindergartener son recently discovered the many literary and gross delights of Captain Underpants.  It’s different from any of the other books I’ve read to them before because it is a novel, with chapters and multiple volumes.  So far we’ve read through six of the ten books in the series.  Now while my three and half-year old daughter has listened attentively to these books, “Tra La La!,” she did asked me to find a book “just like that,” but for girls.

So we tried out Disney Publishing’s new chapter book series and magazine featuring Minnie Mouse and Daisy Duck.


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Learning To Count – Review & Giveaway David Carter’s 100: Lift the Flaps and Learn to Count!

Counting is a huge milestone for any child as they are starting to learn and grow.  Now counting to 10 is “easy breezy,” according to my five-year-old kindergartener son, but what about counting to 30, 50, 80 or even 100?  Aside from learning how to count by 1s, my boy is also learning how to count by 5s and 10s all the way to 100.  Sometimes he gets confused trying to remember how the larger numbers progress so I’m always looking new ways to help him to practice his numbers.

davidcarter100book2 David Carter’s 100: Lift the Flaps and Learn to Count! is a fun new picture book that guides children to count from one to 100 with whimsical illustrations and lots and lots of interactive flaps!

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Wreck-It Ralph Read Along Storybook and CD – Review

We’re getting ready for Spring Break in our household and it’s our first-ever family Disney World vacation!  I’ll have more on our vacation in an upcoming post, but for months we’ve been secretly prepping the kidlets — telling them only a few days before our trip to avoid the daily “are we leaving today” questions — on all things Disney.


Last fall we took them to Disney on Ice’s “Rockin Ever After” and we’ve have been re-watching both the classic and newer films on DVD including such as “Bambi,” “Cinderella,”  “The Little Mermaid,” “Finding Nemo,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “Alladin” as well as some more obscure titles like “Donald Duck Mathmagic Land.”

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Getting The Gold! A St. Patrick’s Day Kids Craft: Making A Leprechaun Trap

Last week my son’s kindergarten teacher sent home a note to all the parents.  Apparently my son’s classroom has been invaded by a mischievous little Leprechaun who has been disrupting the classroom such as knocking over chairs and leaving books out!  In order to catch the leprechaun, the class is going to put out traps to try to get his pot of gold! All the children were asked to use their cleverness, ingenuity and of course, some help from mom and dad, to make their own leprechaun trap and bring it to school this week.

After doing a little research on Pinterest – my son and I came up with the basic idea/design for his trap and we hit the craft store for supplies.  We spent part of yesterday morning working on his masterpiece.  Here’s his finished trap, not too shabby!

     leprechaun3         leprechaun2

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