A few weeks ago at a friend’s house, Mr E was a ballerino. Luckily for his future teenage self, I won’t post the pictures here as he might not appreciate them! Mr. E and his friend decided that since Mr E is a boy, he must be a “ballerino” instead of a “ballerina” when he danced in his friend’s tutu. I thought this was a very clever word choice on the part of these 4-year-olds.
Ballerino Nate is a very sweet story about a boy who wants to dance. But can he, a boy, learn ballet? And will he have to wear a pink outfit in order to do it? Nate’s older brother tries to convince him at every turn that dancing is for girls. Even all the other kids in his first ballet class are girls. But, as you might guess by the title, Nate’s parents help him to see that these stereotypes about ballet aren’t so true after all.
While I don’t think Mr. E is really all that interested in being a ballet dancer (I think he dressed up in ballet garb mostly to be a good friend), I do think most kids need reminders every now and then that activities, interests and careers need not be limited by gender. Mr. E thought it was a “nice story”, and it was certainly a change of pace from most of the books he selects for himself.
Here’s a few quick takes on some other picture books we’ve enjoyed recently:
Mary Had a Little Lamp by Jack Lechner features illustrations by Bob Staake, who also wrote and illustrated Donut Chef (a book we enjoyed a few weeks ago). The style is so similar that Mr. K kept asking me if the Donut Chef was in this book too! Imagine what might happen if Mary brought a lamp everywhere instead of a Lamb, and you get the concept of this book. Simple but funny, and we read it many times over the past two weeks.
I really enjoyed the illustrations in Tugga-Tugga Tugboat by Kevin Lewis, with Illustrations by Daniel Kirk. This sparked a really great discussion with the boys about tugboats. Are they real? Can a little boat really pull a big ship? Why do they do that? We watched a few videos on youtube about tugboats after reading this book!
Chickens to the Rescue by John Himmelman is a short, silly little story that had us laughing as chickens solve problems big and small on the farm. There are lots of fun little details to see if you take the time to look at what all the chickens are doing.
Finally, this week I actually remembered to read a book to Baby J. He is on my lap or eating while I read for many, many books every day. But he is getting to be a bigger baby now…my little guy is not just a newborn bump on a log any more. :-) I got out one of my favorite Usborne board books to enjoy with him: “That’s Not My Puppy“. I totally love the “That’s not my…” series. They all have the same predictable format, but they are super cute and each page has a fun texture. Baby J enjoyed his first just-for-him story time experience too. He was entertained with grabbing at all the textures in the book for quite a long time!
I’m linking up with Read Aloud Thursday @ Hope is the Word!