November is… Picture Book Month

Picture Book Month is an international literacy initiative celebrating print picture books during the month of November. Founder Dianne de Las Casas (author & storyteller) and Co-Founders Katie Davis (author/illustrator), Elizabeth O. Dulemba (author/illustrator), Tara Lazar (author), and Wendy Martin (author/illustrator) have pulled  their worldwide connections to make this book celebration happen.

As a former elementary school teacher and current mama, I am a huge fan of picture books. Even though my girlie is capable of reading on her own now, we still love to snuggle up on the couch with a stack of colorfully illustrated stories. Our collection is pretty extensive — I’m sure you’re shocked :). Here are a few of our favorites… (Summaries from Goodreads. Covers lead to Goodreads pages.)

The Snail and the Whale by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Axel Scheffler – One tiny snail longs to see the world and hitches a lift on the tail of a whale. They go on an amazing journey, past icebergs and volcanoes, sharks and penguins, and the little snail feels so small in the vastness of the world. But when disaster strikes and the whale is beached in a bay, it’s the tiny snail who saves the day.

Bear Snores On written by Karma Wilson, illustrated by Jane Chapman – A whole host of different animals and birds find their way out of the cold and into Bear’s cave to warm up. But even after the tea has been brewed and the corn has been popped, Bear snores on! See what happens when he finally wakes up and finds his cave full of uninvited guests — all of them having a party without him!

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle – One sunny Sunday, the little caterpillar was hatched out of a tiny egg. He was very hungry. On Monday, he ate through one apple; on Tuesday, he ate through two pears; on Wednesday, he ate through three plums–and he was still hungry. Strikingly bold, colorful pictures and a simple text in large, clear type tell the story of the hungry little caterpillar’s progress through an amazing variety and quantity of foods. Full at last, he made a cocoon around himself and went to sleep, to wake up a few weeks later wonderfully transformed into a butterfly!

Edward the Emu written by Sheena Knowles, illustrated by Rod Clement – Edward is tired of being an emu, so he decides to try being something else for a change. First he spends some time swimming with the seals. Next, he lounges with the lions. He even slithers with the snakes. But Edward soon discovers that being an emu may not be so bad after all. So he heads back to his pen, only to find a big surprise awaiting him . . .Sheena Knowles’ upbeat, rhyming text and Rod Clement’s deliciously droll illustrations are sure to make readers laugh out loud in this whimsical picture book.

Corduroy by Don Freeman – When all the shoppers have gone home for the night, Corduroy climbs down from the shelf to look for his missing button. It’s a brave new world! He accidentally gets on an elevator that he thinks must be a mountain and sees the furniture section that he thinks must be a palace. He tries to pull a button off the mattress, but he ends up falling off the bed and knocking over a lamp. The night watchman hears the crash, finds Corduroy, and puts him back on the shelf downstairs. The next morning, a little girl buys him with money she saved in her piggy bank and takes him home to her room. Corduroy decides that this must be home and that Lisa must be his friend.

Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmans – Set in picturesque Paris, this tale of a brave little girl’s trip to the hospital was a Caldecott Honor Book in 1940 and has as much appeal today as it did then. The combination of a spirited heroine, timelessly appealing art, cheerful humor, and rhythmic text makes Madeline a perennial favorite with children of all ages.

Tell me: What’s your favorite picture book?


15 thoughts on “November is… Picture Book Month

  1. Jaime Morrow says:

    I love collecting picture books too. 🙂 Right now my favourites are The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore (and really anything by William Joyce), Fox Makes Friends by Adam Relf, and absolutely everything by Dr. Seuss forever and always. I don’t have kids yet, but that hasn’t stopped me from building up a bit of a collection out of sheer love for picture books.

    • katyupperman says:

      Dr. Seuss is the best! I started building my collection long before I had a kiddo too, Jaime, and I’m so glad I did! I also always give books as baby shower gifts. 🙂

    • katyupperman says:

      My girl and I love all of Karma Wilson’s BEAR books, Jen. I’m such a sucker for stories that rhyme (well). I haven’t heard of THE INCREDIBLE EATING BOY, but I’ll definitely check it out. 🙂

    • katyupperman says:

      We love FANCY NANCY, Meredith! We saw one of the Fancy Nancy ballets a few years ago. It was really cute! THE GREAT LOLLIPOP CAPER sounds like fun. I’ll definitely look it up!

  2. Krispy says:

    Picture books are so beautiful! I’ve recently had a new-found appreciation of them, probably because I’m in love with Scott C’s (e.g. East Dragon, West Dragon) and Jon Klassen’s (e.g. I Want My Hat Back) illustrations!

    Madeline and The Very Hungry Caterpillar are two of my favorites! I also loved Jan Brett’s THE WILD CHRISTMAS REINDEER and FITZ AND THE BEAUTIFUL HORSES; all of her art is intricate and gorgeous though! Another childhood favorite? LEO THE LATE BLOOMER. I managed to pick up a nearly new copy from my local library sale! 🙂

    • katyupperman says:

      I haven’t read LEO THE LATE BLOOMER! Sounds super cute, though. And THE WILD CHRISTMAS REINDEER sounds like a great book to pick up for the holidays. Thanks for the recommendations, lady!

  3. Alison Miller says:

    Bear snores on is the best! Also, I have way too many picture books. 😃 My personal fave is Grover and the monster at the end of this book. And No, David. And anything Little Critter. Okay, clearly too many favorites, lol

    • katyupperman says:

      I used to read THE MONSTER AT THE END OF THIS BOOK to my girl all the time, and NO, DAVID was the first book she read all the way through by herself. Great picks, Alison!

  4. Carrie-Anne says:

    I read a number of picture books in my Children’s Lit class last semester (my choice, not on the syllabus). Some of my favorites were Molly Coxe’s Bunny and the Beast, Laurence Yep’s The Dragon Prince, Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson’s And Tango Makes Three, and Allen Say’s Grandfather’s Journey. I got really choked up at the end of Grandfather’s Journey, when the author/illustrator says his grandfather is passed away now, and he still misses him a lot. Eight years after my grandpap died, I still get emotional when reading about grandfathers dying, even in children’s books.

  5. Alexa says:

    I love picture books. We are huge fans of Julia Donaldson, especially The Gruffalo.
    The Alfie books by Shirley Hughes are also dearly loved by my son, as well as the Hairy Mclary books and Pumpkin soup. He’s current favourite is Six Dinner Sid.
    My favourite is Dogger by Shirley Hughes. I always well up at the end!

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