Raj has one rule: he never uses the bathroom at school. It’s just not the same as the one at home. All day, he avoids bathroom trips. Easy enough, since he lives by these tips: Don’t linger at the sink. Stay away from anyone who makes you laugh. Watch out for distractions, especially schoolwork. And sit still: no running, jumping, cartwheels, or sneezing. Until one day—achoo!—Raj has to break his own rule.
After he faces his fear and uses the bathroom at school, Raj feels different. He doesn’t have to rush! He can try new things, laugh, explore … even enjoy his work. He can stay awhile and play. Raj discovers things are better if you just go when you need to.
Told in speech bubbles with bright, lively art showing a diverse group of kids, this is a riotous rhyming read-aloud with an empathetic take on facing a common fear.
Percy's Perfect Friend
When Percy finds himself in a classroom full of unfamiliar children, he can’t help but feel uncomfortable and alone—that is, until he meets a cuddly new friend: a plush cat he names Miss Petticomb.
When Percy’s new friend is picked up by other children, Percy cautiously sets out to find her. On his journey to retrieve Miss Petticomb, Percy must decide whether it is better to share his friend with his classmates or keep her all to himself. A plush cat, a tea party, and the uniting power of toys may be the secret to saving Miss Petticomb and bringing Percy out of his shell.
In Percy’s Perfect Friend, Crystal Kite Award Winner and early childhood educator Lana Button celebrates the importance of toys in play, the power they have to help children practice social skills, language skills, and imagination, and their ability to bring children together. ALA Schneider Honor Book Winner Peggy Collins captures Percy’s growth from uncertainty to confidence on his quest to save Miss Petticomb. He may just be surprised at the new friends he makes along the way.
Tayra's Not Talking
There's a new kid in the kindergarten class, but she won't say a word! But ... does it really matter? This sweet story has a timely message: there are many ways to make --- and be --- a friend!
The students in Miss Seabrooke's kindergarten class don't understand why the new student won't respond when they talk to her. Speaking LOUDER doesn't help. Tayra doesn't even answer the teacher! Should they just leave her be? Maybe, Kitty decides, she can show Tayra things instead of telling her. Happily, it works! Soon the pair find they can communicate with gestures, dancing, drawings and smiles. And when the others see how much fun they're having, they join in, too! It seems words aren't the only way to connect and be friends!
In this charming picture book, Lana Button uses playful, cadenced rhyming text to explore the art of making a friend. This story sensitively captures a kindergartener's fears and uncertainties, especially around being new and “different” and models compassion, acceptance and friendship as a reassuring way for others to respond. Christine Battuz's expressive illustrations clearly convey the friends' emotions as they process this new experience and try to decide what to do about it. This book is a perfect springboard for discussions about feelings, friendship, differences and belonging. It's a strong choice for character education lessons on kindness, empathy, inclusiveness and caring.
What if Bunny's Not a Bully?
Gertie the elephant says everyone on the playground should stay far away from Bunny because she's super mean. But Kitty has questions: How did Bunny become a bully? Was she born that way? Was she stung by a bullybug? Or maybe she caught the bully flu? Wait, does that mean bullying is contagious? And if it is, couldn't the other animals catch it, too? But ... then no one would play with them either, and that doesn't seem fair. Is it possible that Bunny is sorry? Should they give her a second chance?
Not your typical bullying story, Lana Button's fresh take flips the focus from the child being bullied to the one being called a bully. In cadenced rhyming text, the compassionate and insightful Kitty leads children through a series of questions that get at the core of the assumptions we make about others and how it feels to be on the other side of name-calling. Christine Battuz's expressive illustrations use tenderness and a touch of humor to complement the emotional level of the text. Altogether, this is a perfect child-level exploration of empathy. It would be an excellent choice for discussions about bullying, or more broad issues of social development. It also works for character education lessons on empathy, compassion, fairness and inclusiveness.
My Teacher's Not Here
As soon as she arrives at school, Kitty knows there's trouble. “Smiling Miss Seabrooke should be here to meet me. But my teacher is missing and NOT here to greet me.” With no Miss Seabrooke, everyone should be sent home, right? But no! Kitty and her classmates line up as usual and walk into the school building. Kitty's worries build as she wonders how she will get through the day without her teacher. What will she do when her Thermos gets stuck or her jacket won't zip? Miss Seabrooke is the only one who can fix these things. Or is she?
Author Lana Button perfectly captures the fears and uncertainties of a kindergartner dealing with her first substitute teacher. She also models a way to cope, as Kitty steps up to help the substitute --- a “ginormously tall” giraffe named Mr. Omar --- and discovers that sometimes change can be good. Button's playful and lively cadenced rhyming text, together with Christine Battuz's friendly illustrations of a full cast of animal characters at school, make this a terrific picture book for story time. It provides an excellent lead-in to prepare a class for their first substitute, or for a discussion about how it feels when life doesn't go as expected. A celebration of self-discovery and personal development, this book also makes a wonderful choice for character education lessons on kindness, empathy and perseverance. Educators will appreciate the heartfelt depiction of a young child's warm feelings for her teachers.
Tough Like Mom Hardcover
What does it mean to be tough? Kim finds out in this moving mother-daughter story about family hardship, vulnerability and love, perfect for fans of Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors.
Kim's mum is tough. Everyone says so. She can deal with unruly customers at the Red Rooster with a snap of her fingers.
Kim is tough, too. She doesn't need to wear a hat to keep her ears warm. And she can make soup all by herself, even without the stove.
Kim and her mum are tough.
But Kim is learning that sometimes toughness doesn't look like what you'd expect.
In this tender exploration of a mother-daughter relationship, Kim and her mother learn that in order to support and truly take care of each other, they need to be tough -- and that sometimes being tough means showing vulnerability and asking for help.
When Willow speaks, her words slip out as soft and shy as a secret. With a barely audible whisper, she is ignored most of the day. But Willow is as resourceful as she is quiet, and fashions something magic that helps. But Willow's clever invention is only a temporary solution. How will this quiet little girl make herself heard.
“Sometimes Willow smiled without even trying. But sometimes when she wished she could and knew she should, her smile slipped straight off her face.” So what will she do on Picture Day?! This relatable and reassuring story offers children a terrific model for how to deal with a difficult experience in a socially and emotionally competent way.
Willow Finds Her Way
Shy and quiet Willow silently wishes for a way to say no to her bossy classmate Kristabelle's demands, but the words just never come out. Then Kristabelle starts using the powerful threat of un-inviting children from her “fantastic” birthday party to keep them in line! This child-friendly and relatable story about bullying is elegantly told with honesty and heart and will have young children on the edge of their seats at story time.