Many of us can name our favorite picture book authors from Eric Carle to Dr. Seuss, but some illustrators are lesser known and deserve the same fame. Steve Jenkins (see his website) has collaborated with numerous authors on mostly science-related books, and these titles are all worth a look. The latest added to our elementary library is called Eggs: Nature’s Perfect Package. Various creatures’ eggs are featured for their amazing colors, range of sizes, and unique shapes. Some of my other Jenkins’ favorites are Actual Size which logically features illustrations of animals in true scale – a gorilla’s hand, a giant squid’s eye, and a grizzly’s head. Never Smile at a Monkey is a fascinating title which recommends the best ways to avoid negative or encourage positive encounters with animals. Living Color is a gorgeous book which arranges animals by their color. And the award-winning What Do You Do with a Tail Like This? (click for trailer) shows animals' adaptations and functions.
Just added to the elementary collection is the brand new book Red: A Crayon's Story by Michael Hall. Click on the picture for a video introduction to the book. I shared the book with some elementary teachers, my 10-year old, and my parents (they pretend to humor me when I read newly discovered wonderful picture books with them, but they enjoy kid's books, too). Everyone loved it and interpreted the story in different ways. A third-grade teacher was eager to read it to her class to encourage understanding of an autistic classmate. A fifth grade teacher couldn't stop giggling about Red's grandparents who are nubby little gray crayons. Other crayon books to share: the classic Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson, Get Red by Tony Porto, and The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt. All these titles are in the Madison Elementary Media Center. Happy reading (and coloring)!
Elaine Fultz, SLMS/mls
I love being a school librarian. My profession is a perfect blend of encouraging curiosity and learning with both educators and students.