Ceora Brown LIBR 262A

Materials for Children 0-4

38) Teaching Your Baby to Sign by Laura Heller

Heller, Laura. Teaching Your Baby to Sign. Baby Fingers All Day Long, 2008. 23 pages. ISBN: 978-1-40275545.

Introduce sign language to your baby and enhance language development and speech before children are ready to talk. This little board book is full of beautiful photographs of toddlers who perform the hand motions using American Sign Language. Learn how to sign single words: “eat” “drink,” “more,” “book,” “play” and more. A single word is printed in color against a white background for easy reading. There are instructions at the bottom of each page, highlighted in different colors, that explain exactly how to place fingers for signing—for “book,” “…with flat hands, touch both palms together and open them as if you’re opening a book”. Parents and children will develop a routine way of communicating that is fun and easy. Children will be attracted to the photographs of other children and will want to learn how to sign.  (Board Book 1-4). No author/illustrator website.

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37) Chew, Chew Gulp! by Lauren Thompson

Thompson, Lauren. Chew, Chew, Gulp! Illustrated by Jarrett J. Krosoczka. Margaret K. McElderly Books, 2011. 32 pages. ISBN: 978-1416997443.

How do you eat? This brightly illustrated instructional picture book presents a multicultural blend of four young kids, who teach all the different ways of eating food– “Scoop it,” “Loop it,” “Prod it,” “Pop it”. With very simple text and rhyming phrases young kids will learn how fun it can be to eat food in different ways. Each plate of food is playfully labeled in small letters, and the action words are above in big bold letters. Young children will associate food with action: Ice cream can be licked, while carrot’s can be crunched, and pudding can be scooped.  The colors are vibrant and exciting with a different splash of color for each page–bright orange, soft pink, baby blue hues, deep purple, and greyish-white. With instructions children will learn many different ways to play with their food. (Picture book 2-4). The author’s website can be found at Illustrator’s website can be found at

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36) Time to Pee! by Mo Willems

Willems, Mo. Time to Pee! Hyperion Books, 2003. 40 pages. ISBN:0-7868-1868-9

Learn how to be a big kid by going to the bathroom all by yourself.  This instructional picture book transforms the concept of peeing into a fun activity– to be repeated over and over again.   This picture book’s large text speaks directly to young readers giving information in a step by step process. Each word is in bold, and boxed in different colorful shapes–rectangles, squares, and circles– to emphasize where and how a toddler should pee. A team of sign-carrying mice help clarify the sequence of information by  flying on kites, jets, flags, and parachutes, –“don’t panic,” “don’t fret,” “don’t ignore it,”  “excuse yourself,” “walk down the hall,” “into the bathroom,” “pull down your underwear, “Now you are ready to pee!”  The comforting words alongside the fun illustrations of multicultural children make this picture book a exciting and realistic read. Young children will relate to the concept of peeing and learn that it is okay to pee.(Picture book. 2-4) Willems is the author of Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! and his website can be found at

This picture book is a great potty book–an excellent informational resource for toddlers, because it provides encouraging instructions in chronological order.  The design of the book includes illustrations of mice holding encouraging words to support the toddler-inspired characters. The words are separated individually so it allows children to grasp the information easily. Children can relate to the expressions of the character’s faces and bodily movements as they squirm around trying  to hold their pee. Large amounts of mice make the page animated as well as helping the story to flow or continue. This pee-story begins with a problem, and the mice help support the problem with solutions. There is character development–children move from worry, to relief, to a sense of accomplishment. I would recommend this pee picture book as non-fiction.

The subject is toilet training. If a parent wants a book about toilet training, I would recommend this book.  The  illustrations are similar to other fiction picture books, but the content is informational. Parents can search for “toilet training” books by subject and run across this book if it was included as Dewey. This is a tough question. I would have to choose to shelve the book with picture books because of the illustrations. This is simply a story about peeing, in which you just happen to receive information.


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35) 123 California by Puck

Puck. 123 California: A Cool Counting Book. Illustrated by Kevin Somers. DuoPress, 2009. ISBN: 978-09796213-8.

Bold colors, small size, and up to 10 numbers in this counting board book. Introduce babies and toddlers to numbers, objects, and landscapes simultaneously. Count to ten describing California’s symbols, such as  surfboards, The Golden Gate Bridge, boats, grizzly bears, beach balls, and more.  There are large sized numbers alongside  pictures of objects, which force readers to identify the pictures aloud. Parents will help their babies or toddlers learn how to count and the special glossary section is written in English and Spanish, which will help bilingual parents identify fun locations, symbols and landmarks in California. (Nonfiction, Board book 0-4). A Kevin Somers website can be found at

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34) Baby Eye Like: Triangle by PlayBac

PlayBac. Baby Eye Like: Triangle. PlayBac, 2008. 10 pages. ISBN: 160214-0340

Lets talk about shapes. Triangle shapes. From strawberries, to clover leafs, to pine cones, to fish tails, to mountain tops, very young children will learn about the triangle shape in this small sized board book that is perfect for little fingers. Each page has a triangle cut-out so young ones can touch and feel the shape of a triangle.  The natural world has many shapes that are triangular. Let young ones explore and identify what triangle shapes are in the real world. Babies and toddlers will soon begin to identify triangle shapes in the outside world, ( Non-fiction, Board Book 0-4). No author/illustrator website.

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33) Baby’s Day by Michel Blake

Blake, Michel. Baby’s Day. Photographed by Candlewick. Easy-Open Board Book, 2007. 16 pages. ISBN: 978-0763633684.

Babies and toddlers can recognize pictures of real objects that babies use in daily life–rattle, chair, diaper, bib, bathtub, and more. Learn about playtime objects, eating tools, grooming objects and sleeping necessities.  The photographs are in black and white, but the objects are in color, which make them stand out. The primary colors make items visually appealing. The contrasting colors will make the baby focus on the objects and the large text will help babies associate words with the picture. The board book has stiff pages with rounded corners and a small size for small fingers. (Nonfiction, Board book 0-3). No author/illustrator website.

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26) Global Babies by The Global Fund for Children

The Global Fund for Children. Global Babies. Charlesbridge, 2007. 18 pages. ISBN: 978-1580891745.

Global Babies is a board book for babies all over the world! Seventeen pages of beautiful photographs of babies wearing their cultures colorful clothing will delight and inspire babies of many different cultures. Babies will internalize that there are other babies with many different shades of color, and facial features, and begin to appreciate variety of babies in other countries. Babies will see pictures of baby faces from “Thailand” “Peru,” “South Africa,” “USA,” “India,” and begin to associate images of babies to written text, learning the names of countries.  A positive story is woven into the text on the value of babies—“babies everywhere are beautiful, special, and loved”.  Babies and older children will love this board book and learn that they are loved no matter where they live! (Board Book 0-4). Organization website can be found at illustrator website.

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23) The Four Elements: Fire by Maria Rius and J.M. Parramon

Ruis, Maria. The Four Elements: Fire. Illustrated by J.M. Parramon. Barron’s, 1986. 30 pages. ISBN: 978-0812057430

What is heat? What is fire?  This picture book, from the 1980s, can help introduce young children to the element of fire–explaining  its dangers and usefulness. Fire is always different sizes, it can be… “small, when its lit”,  “big, when it grows,” “terrible, when it spreads,” and bad “when it burns”.  Fire can also be very “good, when it warms,” good for cooking, and “good, for launching rockets”. This picture book has soulful illustrations that bring the words to life, with depictions of fire in its different stages. Fire is not always nice; it can destroy even a simple little girl’s bedroom and toys. J.M. Parramon’s illustrations complement the words on the opposite page. Short, simplified words are written on a white page, while the illustrations are displayed on the opposite page. This allows children to begin associating text with illustration.Fire is not always bad, but be safe when using it otherwise it could hurt people. Fire is part of The Four Elements series, by Ruis, which include Earth, Air, and Water. This picture book is a great addition to any Earth Day storytime session. (Picture Book 3-5). No author-illustrator website.

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