By Chrysta Naron June is Pride month, a time to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community in all its wonderful uniqueness. It’s an opportunity for queer families and children to be seen and to share. Here are a few of the most joyful books with LGBTQ+ characters and stories for you to share with your child this month. Be prepared for giggles, touching conversations, and tons of rainbow color! This Day in June by Gayle E. Pitman This adorable, award-winning book takes place at a Pride parade. . . .
By Chrysta Naron “Families are like branches on a tree. We grow in different directions yet our roots remain as one.” The author of this saying is unknown, but its wisdom resonates with so many of us. In my family, so much of our love is rooted in shared books. The women of the family have always made time to read with their growing children, nieces, nephews, and grandchildren. These reading roots helped every single one of us grow into the people we are today and continue to shape us. . . .
By Chrysta Naron “Once I unlocked the mystery of the alphabet that led to words, a multitude of words connecting me to the world, there was no stopping me.” —Gloria Naylor Every word in the entire English language, every word your child will ever read or say, is made up of only 26 letters. Learning the alphabet is the gateway to reading, but in order to master it, kids need to relate the letters to their names, sounds, and to real-world objects. This is the way letters become more than . . .
By Chrysta Naron May is the time to celebrate and lift up the mothers and mother figures in our lives. But rather than just limiting our celebration to one day, let’s make a DIY Mother’s Day gift that lets them know how much we appreciate them every day. I love to kick off most kid projects with, you guessed it…a book! While there are many incredible picture books for this special day, I am particularly fond of A Chair For My Mother by Vera B. Williams. Most other Mother’s Day books focus . . .
By Laila Weir We have a saying in our family of three children: Siblings are friends for life. But along the way to that lifelong relationship are plenty of challenges, competition, and complicated feelings. Encouraging first children to get excited for an upcoming sibling, and then supporting both younger and older children through the emotional ups and downs of their relationship, will help them develop that special bond. And a well-selected book is among parents’ most powerful . . .
By Tulani Thomas In my family, Earth Day is every day. We strive to cherish our planet and never take it for granted. Every day we can do small acts that make a big difference: This is the ethos that I have always taught my children. I try to incorporate nature-friendly living into so many areas of our lives that it becomes second nature (pun intended). We turn the lights off when leaving a room, use reusable water bottles, turn the water off when brushing our teeth, and, yes, eat loads of . . .
By Sarah Tiglao Earth Day presents a great opportunity to teach our children to care for the planet, but finding the way to explain these complex issues to young ones can be difficult. Read on for fun literacy-building activities that will help your children develop a love for the planet and foster their budding belief in their ability to help make the world a better place. Sharing a good book with our little ones provides one of the best ways to teach young kids about important topics . . .
By Carlene Murray As a mother of three young children and an early childhood educator, I’m always looking for ways to help my charges learn about other cultures and traditions from around the world, as well as explore their own heritage. I’m fortunate to live in an area where my kids see faces of many colors everyday, and nothing warms my heart quite like seeing a group of children from different backgrounds bonding and playing together. But no matter where you live, reading a wide variety of . . .
By Karen Williams Who among us can resist an adorable puppy? For many kids, dogs are their first loves and best friends. Dogs, and puppies especially, have an incredible ability to connect with us and teach us about unconditional love, joy, and empathy. If your little one adores pups, try these sweet picture books about puppies for your next story time. And did you know that dogs can be comforting, receptive audiences for children who need practice reading aloud? Furry friends make great . . .
By Karen Williams I’ve always been proud of the fact that my daughter loves to drink water! Ava is a teenager now, but from the time she was young, I instilled in her the value of this essential resource and talked about how vital water is for not only our bodies, but also our planet. We all know that our bodies are largely made of water, but did you know that 71 percent of the Earth’s surface is water, as well? March 22 is World Water Day, a day to celebrate and reflect on the . . .