Story time is the best time of the day. Whether we're snuggled up on the couch or cozy in our pjs before bed, reading stories with my little ones is one of my favorite things to do. Everyone has a favorite book they remember from their childhood, and every day, parents and kids are discovering new classics of their own. There are many fabulous children's books out there, some of which everyone knows about and others we would have never discovered had my son not simply pulled a random book off a library shelf. I created this blog to share some of these wonderful stories with you. Think of it as a year's worth of the best children's books around, since no day should be without a great story. In the end, I hope we'll all have discovered at least a few new titles that will have made their way onto our list of family favorites. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Day 203: My Heart Is Like a Zoo

My son picked this book up off the "New Arrivals" shelf at our last library visit, excitedly showed it to me, then immediately ran over to a chair to sit down and read it.  Needless to say, we checked it out and brought it home, and have read it many times since then.  Michael Hall's illustrations are colorful, creative, and engaging, and his short, well-rhyming text makes this book a wonderful one to read with your little one.

As you can probably guess from the cover illustration, the pictures of zoo animals in this book are made up almost exclusively of heart shapes.  The bold, simple design is very clever, and the text includes some great adjectives, as well.
My heart is like a zoo --
Eager as a beaver, 
Steady as a yak,
Hopeful as a hungry heron fishing for a snack...
See how cute these are?

My son, 5, loves the different animals and counting all of the heart shapes he can find within their designs, while my daughter, 2 1/2, loves the animals and pointing to the hearts, too.  My son also loves being able to read it to my daughter himself, which is always cute to see.  The bold, colorful designs and rhyming text would make this a great book to read with babies, as well.  It's currently only available in hardcover from what I can tell, but I wouldn't be surprised if a board book version will be in the works sometime in the future.

I especially love the way this book inspires creativity.  After reading it for the first time, my son said, "We should make our own animals out of hearts!"  He was so excited to create his own creatures using shapes once we got home, and couldn't wait to get started on a peregrine falcon picture.  He told me which animals he wanted to make, and then we brainstormed together about what colors to use and what size hearts we might need.  I just loved watching his creative little mind work!  I include a few pictures of his creations below.

Whether you're a teacher looking for a great art-inspiring book to share with your class or a parent looking for a fun, easy story-themed craft to do with your child, My Heart Is Like a Zoo is the perfect book.  We hope you love it as much as we do!
My son's favorite animal, the peregrine falcon
A butterfly
Poison Dart Frog (inspired by the frog in the book)
Yeti Crab, inspired by Wild Kratts (our favorite show)
 * the red dots on the claws are the bacteria it collects and eats - fascinating!


Abbysgrammy said...

He showed me these pictures yesterday, very proudly. Now I see where the ideas came from. Very creative!
Love, Grammy

Unknown said...

I absolutely love this one. We are members of our Zoo, and I am always looking for books to read before me go.

Love the art projects.

Silly Funny Books said...

Great book! Such an inspirational, life-affirming read.

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