Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls

A couple of months ago, my daughter received this book, Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls by Francesca Cavallo and Elena Favilli  as a gift. It has been such a wonderful experience reading this book with my daughter because both of us are learning about some rebellious and extraordinary women in history. Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls is not … [Read more...]

The Technology Tail

Do you have an older child that is curious about social media? When you child reaches their tween years or even earlier, curiosity about social media begins. Being exposed to social media is inevitable as a child enters tween and teen years and teaching your child appropriate internet etiquette can be challenging. Where do you begin? I always … [Read more...]

5 Things you need to know about Social Skills Coaching

"In a world that is ever changing, there is one constant. As human beings, we need to communicate with each other. We need to be around others for many many reasons, including support, learning and most importantly a sense of belonging" (Ostovar, R & DiVittore, K. 2017). 5 things you need to know about Social Skills Coaching is a parent … [Read more...]

There’s Nothing To Do!

Does your child have tons of toys and activities but still complains there's nothing to do? Check out this book written by Dev Petty and illustrated by Mike Boldt, There's Nothing To Do! This engaging and interactive picture book is about a frog who gets bored despite his toys and creative ideas from his friends. In the beginning of the book, Frog … [Read more...]

Animated Language Learning

Do you have a child that loves Disney? Do you have a child with Autism or a language and learning disability? About this time last year, I became very interested in learning how Disney can encourage language and communication with children and adults with Autism. After reading the book, Life Animated I decided to try some strategies with a … [Read more...]

The Bear Report

The Bear Report written and illustrated by Thyra Heder is a magical story about a young girl and her quest with a polar bear. The story begins with a young girl named Sophie who is working on a book report about polar bears. On her assignment, she writes polar bears are "big", "eat things" and "are mean." At that moment, a polar bear appears in her … [Read more...]

I’m Scared

I'm Scared by Jennifer L Holm and Matthew Holm is the newest book in the inventive series My First Comics. Chilly is a scared and fearful snowflake. He is scared of many things including the dark and sometimes he is scared for no reason at all! One day he sees Tizzy Tornado and Grumpy Cloud playing on the swing set. He desperately wants to play … [Read more...]

Shark Lady

Shark Lady by Jess Keating is an inspirational picture book about the life and accomplishments of Eugenie Clark. The author takes you through Eugenie's childhood and her early passion for sharks. As she grew older, many people discouraged her from being a scientist because she was a woman. She often got pressure to be a secretary or a housewife … [Read more...]

Five Inspirational Picture Books

As a speech language pathologist and parent, I love to use storytelling as an opportunity to initiate meaningful conversations and encourage children to follow their dreams regardless of their disabilities and delays. Children with special needs face many challenges in their lives, and reading inspirational children’s literature can help improve … [Read more...]

We’re All Wonders

We're All Wonders by R.J. Palacio is a powerful picture book about the beloved character, Auggie from the chapter book, Wonder. Wonder was one of my favorite books because of it's powerful and valuable lesson for all children to learn. To check out my review of Wonder, click here. When I saw We're All Wonders in my son's scholastic book, I … [Read more...]

Happy Dreamer

Do you have a child that is a dreamer? Are you a dreamer yourself? I recently attended an event with Peter Reynolds at the Jacob Burns Center. He read some of his children's books including The Dot, Ish and then read his most recent book, Happy Dreamer. Happy Dreamer brought me to tears because it describes a child that has big dreams, but is often … [Read more...]

Inside Out and Back Again

Are you looking for an inspirational and educational book to read with your elementary school child ages 8 and up? Inside Out and Back Again is an excellent book to read together with your child. I got the recommendation to read this book through the Girls Leadership Parent and Daughter Book Club, which celebrates and shares books that help … [Read more...]

Reducing Stress with Contimusic

A couple of months ago, I was contacted by Tom and Christine Conti, the founders of Emotion Transitional Music Therapy. As a speech language pathologist who works with children and adults with varying disabilities, I have seen first hand the positive and calming effect of music on my clients, specifically those with Autism. Although Contimusic is … [Read more...]

How Does Technology Affect Face to Face Communication?

How does technology affect our face to face communication? As a speech language pathologist, communication is a great interest of mine. With the dramatic increase in technology in the past five to ten years, how is this affecting our conversations and ability to communicate face to face? The technology I am referring to in this article is about … [Read more...]

Support Our Kickstarter! A Tale of The Monkey Balloon

  Have you ever lost a balloon? In 2014, special educator Mindy Winebrenner, illustrator Yuki Osada and I teamed up to make our life long dream of becoming authors a reality -we published our first book, The Monkey Balloon. This book was a unique story about Mimi and her adventures in finding her lost balloon. With the help of Yuki Osada, … [Read more...]

Picture A Conversation

With the increase in technology, our face to face communication has decreased over time. We are communicating more and more via text messages, email and through social media than we are with face to face communication. As a result, our ability to converse with others and stay attentive to specific topics is becoming more challenging. At times, … [Read more...]

Today I Feel..An Alphabet of Feelings

Today I Feel by Madalena Moniz is a beautifully illustrated alphabet book about a range of feelings. Each page is a piece of artwork and describes feelings that are more complex in nature which can naturally elicit conversation. Although this book was intended for preschoolers, I find that it can be even more appropriate for older children because … [Read more...]

Jack’s Worry

Jack's Worry by Sam Zuppardi is an exceptional picture book about overcoming short-term anxiety and worry. A couple of weeks ago, I was in a waiting room and saw this book lying on the table. I immediately picked it up and read it to my son and instantly loved it. It was a simple story with real and complex feelings that any child could relate … [Read more...]

What’s The Big Deal About First Ladies?

In honor of Women's History Month, I am proud to review the book, What's The Big Deal About First Ladies? written by Ruby Shamir and illustrated by Matt Faulkner. This book is packed with facts about the first ladies of our nation dating all the way back to our first lady, Martha Washington. What's The Big Deal about First Ladies? can help teach … [Read more...]

Ed Roberts Father of Disability Rights

Ed Roberts: Father of Disability Rights written by Diana Pastora Carson and illustrated by Patrick Wm. Connally tells the inspirational story of Ed Roberts, the man who changed the life of people with disabilities. As a young child, Ed was a typical child that could run and play with all of the other children. He loved organizing football and … [Read more...]

Life on Mars

Life on Mars by author and illustrator Jon Agee is an silly and engaging story about a daring boy's quest to find life on Mars. The book begins with the character stating, "Everybody thinks I'm crazy. Nobody believes there is life on Mars. But I do. And I just know that I'm going to find it." I love this introduction statement because it … [Read more...]

Tips on Encouraging your Child to Enjoy Reading

I am excited to present  this guest post by Danny Nguyen from My Parenting Journal . Danny's informative website, My Parenting Journal is an excellent resource for parents that includes information about stages and ages, child's education, child's health, family relationships, and parenting issues. Education has become an integral aspect of the … [Read more...]

How to Supplement Your Child’s Museum Trip

I am excited to present this guest post written by Joyce Wilson. Joyce is a retired teacher with decades of experience. Today, she is a proud grandmom and mentor to teachers in her local public school system. She and a fellow retired teacher created TeacherSpark.org to share creative ideas and practical resources for the classroom. Thank you … [Read more...]

I am Jim Henson

I am Jen Henson is another wonderful book in the series of Ordinary People Change the World. This series celebrates how ordinary people achieve extraordinary achievements. Other books in this series that I have reviewed are I am Helen Keller, I am Lucille Ball, I am Martin Luther King Jr., I am Albert Einstein and I am Abraham Lincoln. As a … [Read more...]

The Benefits of Reading Aloud with Older Children

Is reading aloud and joint reading only for young children? No! Many parents have the misconception that once your child can read independently, it's time to stop reading aloud. This cannot be further from the truth. I found an interesting article by Connie Matthiessen discussing the benefits of reading aloud written by Jim Trelease, the author of … [Read more...]

The Water Princess

The Water Princess written by Susan Verde and Georgie Badiel and illustrated by Peter H Reynolds is a thoughtful, poetic and beautiful book about the efforts of a young girl named Princess Gie Gie. This book is written and illustrated based on the childhood experience of Georgie Badiel. As a young girl, Georgie Badiel would have to walk for miles … [Read more...]

Get Ready for Jetty

Get Ready for Jetty written by Jeanne Kraus and illustrated by Sandra Kimbell is a book written in a diary form about a girl named Jetty. Jetty is in 4th grade and has been recently diagnosed with ADHD. Throughout the book she discusses in the first person perspective, her thoughts and feelings about her diagnosis of ADHD and how it affects her … [Read more...]

Plenty of Love to Go Around

Plenty of Love to Go Around by Emma Chichester Clark is a thoughtful and heartwarming book about sharing your love. Plum is a dog that is known as the "special one" to his owners Emma and Rupert. Their next door neighbors, Sam and Gracie love Plum and view him as their "best one and only". Plum feels loved all over and special until one day, there … [Read more...]

Toby

Toby by author and illustrator Hazel Mitchell is a heartwarming story of a boy who adopts a dog named Toby. When the boy and his father visit the shelter, he immediately gravitates towards Toby. When Toby comes home from the shelter, he doesn't want to play and appears passive and scared. The boy immediately comforts Toby by giving him his special … [Read more...]

Odd Duck

Odd Duck by Cecil Castellucci and Sara Varon is a funny and engaging chapter book about a duck named Theodora and her best friend Chad. Theodora is a unique kind of duck that loves routine and structure.  She loves doing her daily exercises including balancing a teacup on her head while swimming and engaging in other activities such as wingspan and … [Read more...]

Make an Inspirational Canvas!

I was contacted by the Canvas Factory a couple of months ago about about writing a post and creating a canvas of my choice. Given my love for children's literature, I wanted to create a canvas with one of my favorite quotes that I could display in my home. One of my favorite quotes is from the children's book, I am Albert Einstein, part of the … [Read more...]

Ada Twist, Scientist

I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.” — Albert Einstein, Theoretical Physicist Ada Twist Scientist by Andrea Beaty and illustrated by David Roberts is about a young, interesting and inquisitive girl named Ada. Ada didn't talk until she was three and her first word was "Why?" Once she began talking, she couldn't stop … [Read more...]

Each Kindness

Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson is a powerful book about kindness and regret. This story is told in the first person perspective by a young girl named Chloe and her friends who treat the new girl in class with unkindness. Each Kindness begins with the story of a girl named Maya, a new girl that has joined the class mid year. When Maya enters … [Read more...]

The Well of Truth

The Well of Truth by Martha Hamilton and Mitch Weiss is the story about telling the truth. Most children experiment with lying and for many young children, this is common. To learn more about developmental age and lying, check out this article by Parenting.com here. The Well of Truth is a folktale about three friends including Goat, Rooster and … [Read more...]

Stone Soup

Are you looking for a book to help teach your child about sharing and working together? Stone Soup by Heather Forest illustrated by Susan Gaber is a folktale about two travelers that are hungry and are seeking food in a local village. This European folktale has been told for centuries and teaches an importance lesson for both children and adults … [Read more...]

All My Treasures A Book of Joy

All My Treasures A Book of Joy by Jo Witek illustrated by Christine Roussey is a story about treasuring the day to day gifts. This enchanting book makes an ideal gift to give someone because of it's beautiful presentation. The book also has the addition of numerous flaps on each page to further engage a child in the story during reading. All My … [Read more...]

Milk Goes to School

Milk Goes to School is a clever and engaging story about Milk's adventures on her first day of school. With the author's clever puns and valuable lesson about treating others, Milk Goes to School is an excellent read at school and in the home environment. Milk was off to her first day of school and she was scared. What was going to happen? Who … [Read more...]

If You’re So Smart, How Come You Can’t Spell Mississippi?

Do you want to educate your child about Dyslexia? Whether your child has a learning disability or not, this book titled, If You're So Smart, How Come You Can't Spell Mississippi? is an excellent book to help children understand what Dyslexia is and how it can affect a child's reading and writing abilities. As an educator and advocate for all … [Read more...]

What Do You Do With a Problem?

What Do You Do With a Problem? by Kobi Yamada is an inspiring book about confronting problems in a child's life. I find Kobi's books to be not only inspiring and beautifully illustrated, but so thoughtful in the way that she is able to present complex information (such as having a problem) so that children can understand. Kobi Yamada is also the … [Read more...]

The Color Monster

The Color Monster, A Pop-Up Book about Feelings by Anna Llenas is a special and engaging book about feelings. As a speech language pathologist who works with children and adults with complex communication needs, emotions can be an abstract concept to teach. Using a multi-sensory approach, like this author does in The Color Monster, can help bring … [Read more...]

El Deafo

El Deafo by Cece Bell is a graphic novel about a girl named Cece who becomes deaf after getting sick as a young child. What was it like for Cece being deaf? Upon learning that Cece was deaf, her parents sent her to a special school for deaf children called The Fisher School. At this school she felt comfortable and secure. "George, Sabrina, Terry, … [Read more...]

The Jacket

The Jacket written by Kirsten Hall and illustrated by Dasha Tolstikova  is a creative and interesting picture book that tells the journey of a book searching for "the child who would finally notice him". One day he met the girl he always dreamed of and fit perfectly in her hands. Everything seems perfect until he came home with her and found out … [Read more...]

Diana’s White House Garden

Diana's White House Garden by Elisa Carbone is a true story about Diana Hopkins , the ten year old child who lived in the White House during the term of President Roosevelt. Back in 1943, Diana lived in the White House with her father, Harry Hopkins who was the chief adviser to President Roosevelt. During World War II, the White House was a a very … [Read more...]

Books about Vehicles…Language and Learning Tips

Does your child like vehicles? These two books, Blue Boat and With Any Luck, I'll Drive a Truck are excellent for children at the preschool age up to kindergarten. The books present with colorful and bright illustrations with engaging texts that will keep your child attending to the story. With Any Luck, I'll Drive a Truck by David Friend is … [Read more...]

Summerlost

Summerlost by Ally Condie is a novel about a young girl who recently lost her younger brother and father in an accident. The author tells the story of a girl named Cedar who returns to the town of Iron Creek for the summer. Upon settling into their house in Iron Creek, Cedar meets a boy named Leo who changes her world. Her summer is filled with a … [Read more...]

Books That Spark Imagination

“Logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere.” - Albert Einstein With electronics and busy schedules, sometimes it feels like there is no time for a child to use their imagination. Children have the beautiful gift of imagination and it's our job as parents to provide opportunities to stimulate it. Below are two books that … [Read more...]

Over-Scheduled Andrew

Is your child over-scheduled? I picked up Over-Scheduled Andrew by Ashley Spires at my local library. I am a big fan of Ashley's books. Check out my review of The Most Magnificent Thing here. Andrew loved putting on plays and decided to join the drama club so he could perform on a real stage. He loved drama club and was excited to be a part of … [Read more...]

Go, Little Green Truck!

Go, Little Green Truck! by Roni Schotter and illustrated by Julia Kuo is sweet story of Little Green Truck, a pickup that lived on a farm. Little Green Truck was a proud pickup and loved feeling clean and strong for his boss, Farmer Gray. He helped with all of the chores including carrying bundles, bales and bins. He picked up packages and … [Read more...]

Douglas, You Need Glasses and Erik the Red Sees Green

Does your child wear glasses? Is your child colorblind? I wanted to review these two children's books, Douglas, You Need Glasses and Erik the Red Sees Green this week to help give parents a resource about different vision issues. For many children, getting glasses can be exciting. For others, the process of wearing glasses can be frustrating and … [Read more...]

More Than Enough, review and author interview

More Than Enough  A Passover Story by April Halprin Wayland is a children's book about the Jewish holiday of Passover. The book focuses on the concept of Dayenu, which means "it would have been enough for us". Each page reflects the various steps in preparing and celebrate Passover such as buying the ingredients, making special recipes (such as … [Read more...]

Gravitybread presents Mark Pett

I am excited to present an interview with Mark Pett, the author of one of my favorite books The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes. To check out my review of this book with a suggested lesson plan for teachers, click here. I love this book because it shows children that we can learn from making mistakes and that no one is perfect! I especially love his … [Read more...]

Is My Cup Empty? Review, research and an author interview

Is My Cup Empty? is a heartfelt children's book about being optimistic, helpful and mindful. What happens if your cup is empty? "Fill it with water, milk or juice that's chilled. If your Grandma's lap if empty and she needs love, "climb right up on it to give her kisses and a hug!" Is My Cup Empty? is the first book in the Lil Sherri series and … [Read more...]

Social Thinking Conference…product reviews and tips to use at home

  "The concept of being social is a judgement not a test score" (Social Thinking, 2016) This past week, I had the pleasure of attending a one day Social Thinking Conference in Tarrytown, NY. I was excited to hear Michelle Garcia Winner, the founder of Social Thinking discuss Informal Dynamic Social Thinking Assessment and Core … [Read more...]

Social Thinking…product reviews plus a link to attend a conference…

As a speech language pathologist, I treat many children and adults with social cognitive learning challenges. Many individuals with varying diagnoses struggle with pragmatic language skills that impact their ability to build strong relationships with their peers and interact with others in their environment. Diagnoses such as Autism, genetic … [Read more...]

Cooking with Mr. C

Learn math in the kitchen! Check out Cooking with Mr. C, a picture book about a math teacher named Mr. C that uses cooking and baking to teach his students fractions and other mathematics concepts. When the main character Scottie, arrived on his first day of fourth grade, he didn't know what to expect from his math teacher. His sister told him he … [Read more...]

Embracing Feelings with Mindfulness: Two Book Reviews

Anh's Anger by Gail Silver is about a young boy named Anh who becomes angry with his grandfather one day when he is asked to stop playing with his blocks. When he is asked to "put his blocks down" to come to dinner, he angrily knocks down his blocks and tells his grandfather, "Go away! I hate you!" His grandfather tells Anh to go to his room and … [Read more...]

I am Albert Einstein

"Being different is what makes you special. So find what you love. Learn everything you can about it. And share the best parts with anyone that will listen. You never know who you'll inspire." I am Albert Einstein (2014) Teach your child all about Albert Einstein by reading the book from the series Ordinary People Change the World in I am Albert … [Read more...]

How Katie Got a Voice

Do you want to introduce your child to disabilities? How about educating your children about individuals who are nonverbal? I bought the book, How Katie Got a Voice by Patricia Mervine, MA, CCC-SLP many months ago and really enjoyed it. I have read it to my own children and recently got an opportunity to speak about augmentative and alternative … [Read more...]

I am Martin Luther King Jr.

"The time is always right to do right" Martin Luther King Jr. What makes someone a hero? Another powerful book by Brad Meltzer is I am Martin Luther King Jr in the Ordinary People Change the World. How do you explain the complex changes that Martin Luther King Jr. accomplished in a children's book? It's quite a challenging task, but the author … [Read more...]

I am Abraham Lincoln

I am thrilled to participate in the month-long blog tour by Penguin Random House in February featuring the New York Times bestselling series Ordinary People Change the World series by Brad Meltzer. I love this series and have reviewed several other titles including I am Lucille Ball and I am Helen Keller. "No matter where you are from, or how … [Read more...]