From Our Family to Yours

One could go on and on about the benefits of reading to your children. It fosters cognitive and language development, as well as emotional bonding. If you have those days (and we ALL do) where nothing went right, reading time can be the healer.

I wanted to take some time to recommend a few books that we share not only as part of the Mister John’s curriculum, but some of my daughter’s and my favorites that we read at home. I often love picking books that don’t necessarily feature a traditional family dynamic, because we all know that what makes a family is love! I hope you find some new favorites off this list!

Jonathan and His Mommy By Irene Smalls Illustrated by Michael Hays
Speaking of bonding and sharing time, this book has beautiful realistic illustrations and fun words all about Jonathan and Mommy’s walk. They take all kinds of steps in their neighborhood. Sometimes my daughter and I act out this story! Jonathan and his Mommy is a celebration of love and security of family and the place you live.

I Like It When… By Mary Murphy

“What do you like to do with the one you love the most?” This board book is a great one for all ages! Winner of the National Parenting Publications Gold Award, this book goes through all different activities we do with a caregiver we love and trust. I love that there’s no mention of gender or labels on anything. We love the bright illustrations and bold lettering to pick out our letters!

Be Who You Are and other works By Todd Parr

Here at Mister John’s Music, we love and feature so many of Todd Parr’s works. This one I particularly love. You can often recognize Todd’s illustration style right away. He puts ideas and concepts in such a clear and concise way. In The Peace Book, he mentions how peace is everyone having a home. What a radical and live concept to begin wording concepts to our children. Todd Parr reminds kids that their unique traits are what make them so special. With his signature silly and accessible style, Parr encourages readers to embrace all their unique qualities. My daughter loves picking out the different characters and labeling illustrated kiddos as herself or her friends.

Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

This one is a household favorite! We follow Max as he becomes king of the Wild Things and ventures into the wild unknown, and ultimately wants to go back to somewhere where he is loved best of all. One of our favorite parts is the Wild RUMPUS! I often make the book dance and do a little song as we turn the pages. Just make up a little tune and make a trumpet sound with your mouth. This book brings up a lot of interesting thematic elements for all ages. We explore thematic elements of imagination, how we handle our anger and frustration, and love and forgiveness. There’s a reason why this is a literary children’s classic.

When Sadness is At Your Door by Eva Eland

I find this book to be incredibly important. We share this title in our Stories and Standards Class during our Emotions unit. This story highlights the importance of sitting with Sadness instead of trying to hide it. I think this is a great starter for a conversation on big feelings and what we can do to help ease the pain. As we would say in Stories and Standards, emotions can be big or small and they are a part of us.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my breakdown of these different books that our family enjoys, maybe you’ll try a title or two!