Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Playing Possum Picture Book (Perfect Back-to-School Book)

Each year, I have anxious kids enter my class and can instantly see that, because of their anxiety, they struggle to make friends. 

Often, these children don't even know how to go about it. 

Playing Possum, written and illustrated by Jennifer Black Reinhart, is a must-have book for your classroom library that features two very anxious- and adorable- main characters.
Playing Possum Picture Book
I just discovered this on the NEW BOOK shelf at the library.  The cover's illustrations drew me in and I'm so happy I picked up the book.
Playing Possum Picture Book

Playing Possum Picture Book


Playing Possum Picture Book

Playing Possum Picture Book


Playing Possum Picture Book

Another book that deals with anxiety is the magnificent After the Fall. Truly a wonderful book and one that ALL kids can identify with.

For some reason, many of my friends didn't see the anxiety connection.  That's a reminder that sometimes anxiety is so well hidden but it's there.  It may not manifest in obvious ways but in the case of Humpty, he wasn't able to enjoy the things he did in the past.  

It's such a lovely book.  Powerful.  Subtle.  

I simply cannot understand how this did not win the Caldecott Award.  It's that good.  

I created two packets in my store to support the book if interested. 

The first one is smaller (and at $2, cheaper.  BUT it's INCLUDED in the second packet so no need to purchase both if interested.)

Smaller one:

Larger Packet in store:

And I like to add that no one needs ANY materials to go along with a book.  I just make them for my own class from time to time and offer them in case an extension is needed for others as well.

Happy reading!

Monday, July 26, 2021

Don't Hug Doug Picture Book Part 2

A lot of people read my post on Don't Hug Doug and I just updated it with my newest TpT product that supports the book.  Then it dawned on me that I should probably write a new post. 

From Amazon:

Doug doesn't like hugs. He thinks hugs are too squeezy, too squashy, too squooshy, too smooshy. He doesn't like hello hugs or goodbye hugs, game-winning home run hugs or dropped ice cream cone hugs, and he definitely doesn't like birthday hugs. He'd much rather give a high five--or a low five, a side five, a double five, or a spinny five. Yup, some people love hugs; other people don't. So how can you tell if someone likes hugs or not? There's only one way to find out: Ask! Because everybody gets to decide for themselves whether they want a hug or not.


“Don’t Hug Doug can make kids feel better about their own boundaries, and challenge them to understand the comfort of others. But really, it gives grown-ups something to consider, too.” —Boston Globe

“It’s great to see . . . boundaries [of consent and personal autonomy] talked about, and Don’t Hug Doug does it in a way that’s both reinforcing and fun to read.” —The A.V. Club

“A cheerful approach to basic consent . . . An excellent update on the golden rule: treat people how they want to be treated.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“A gently humorous picture book that kindly, effectively highlights the importance of asking others before initiating physical contact.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Simple and effective in showing young viewers how to establish bodily autonomy . . . A great starting point for a conversation about boundaries and how to set them.” —The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

“A fun way to deliver the truth of different strokes for different folks.” —Booklist

Here's a prview of the packet:

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Don't Hug Doug

Have you ever struggled with teaching your students to be assertive and wrestled with exactly how to tackle a tough topic like CONSENT on an age-appropriate level? Don't Hug Doug (He Doesn't Like It) is the PERFECT book for you! 

Do we need to be teaching little ones about CONSENT and setting boundaries?  Yep! The younger we introduce and teach them to protect themselves, the safer they are. This book is a natural springboard to follow up conversations involving good touch/bad touch. All children need to know that THEY have control and autonomy of their bodies and Doug, who oozes self-confidence, shows exactly how to do it.

Love the art work! 

Although I didn't show many of the pages, Doug does tell us who he allows to hug him and why.  

Just ask!  So simple. Can easily be practiced right then and there!

I found this book at Barnes & Noble and am so glad I did. It's a really fun book...not preachy at all. The "lesson" doesn't overpower the story. It's presented so matter-of-factly which is appreciated. I hope you love this book and find it as valuable as I do!

EDITED on July 26th, 2021:

Just added a TpT product to support this wonderful book!

I'm so looking forward to sharing this book and these activities with my class in September when I go back.  Here's the preview of all included:

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Picture Book Reviews

A few posts ago, I mentioned I was giving quick picture book reviews in my feed and on my stories over at Instagram.

Here are some examples of books I highlighted over the last few days.  Just click to play here.

First one up: 

Here's a cute free poem, The Bunny Hokey Pokey, that you could use with this book. Click on pic.

Next one is Peter Easter Frog:

Next up, I am the Longest Dog:

Here's a book, Dig In,  that was only one slide so just a picture. I'd love to use this with a guided reading group. Not a new book but one I just discovered.

Finally, a new Harry book!  I was shocked to see it! 

How much do I love Harry?  I actually have a free product in my store.  Click on pic to get it.

I'm about to do a whole bunch on Earth Day/Spring as well as just some books I found that I really enjoyed.  Been playing with the format but, going forward, they'll look like the Bunnies on the Bus and Harry Videos and will cap off between 15-30 seconds.

Any feedback to share?  I'm all ears!

Thanks so much!

Monday, February 1, 2021

Fabulous February Freebies!

Feel free to send these Freebies home with your students if you're still teaching remotely.  

First up, this adorable craft which I just updated. It makes a cute display.

The update? Added a simple "I love you to pieces!" with NO NAME. Perfect for preschoolers.

One of my favorite math games is Clear the Board.

It comes in a 2-6 and a 2-12 Board.  Great to reinforce Subitizing Dice Dots and adding,  Sooooo simple to play and kids love it!  Quick!


See this post about my thoughts on making Valentine Boxes in school.  If you don't have the time, use my letter to send home! Easy breezy! I also have a quick video showing me making a box on that link.

I also offer two free Valentine Poems to share,

If interested in my paid product of February Poems, you can click on the picture below. Topics include

*Groundhog Day
*Valentine's Day
*100th Day of School
*Presidents' Day
*Dental Health
*Mardi Gras

Poems are such an awesome way to practice fluency and reinforce sight words. I use Poetry Binders in my classroom and send them home once a week.  I ask kids to fill out a simple form and return the next day.  You can grab a FREE recording form by clicking on picture below.

If you're looking for some other February Themed lessons, you may want to check these out: