Saturday, April 6, 2013

Project 101: Weekly Library Challenge + Virtual Book Club for Kids

Image courtesy of Toddler Approved
Now at the first Saturday in April, I have hit my first bump in the road regarding Project 101, my weekly library challenge that I started in January in honor of how much we love the library and of the fact that County of Los Angles library is celebrating its 101st year. Typically, each week I share one book that the boys have been enjoying from the library and one book that I am reading. For the first time, I have no new book to share that I am reading. I am still reading Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, closing in on page 600 (of 700+). The other hiccup with sharing something else that I am reading is that we did not make it to the library this week and the bookmobile did not make it into town. So, this week I am sharing two books the boys love and am sharing a bit about the Virtual Book Club for Kids, as I highlight books from its March and April authors. 

We often have somewhere in the ballpark of 10 (give or take) books for the boys out from the library at time, and Wild Thing always wants us to read them all. Yet, I can tell his favorites by the ones he asks for me to read to him the most and the ones he likes to pick up himself and read. A favorite this week is Too Many Toys, a book by David Shannon, the April author for  the Virtual Book Club for Kids. Activities related to his books will be shared on April 15th. (This post from Toddler Approved has more details about the VBCK Blog Hop). We are already David Shannon fans, through Duck on a Bike and Duck with a Book. Too Many Toys, however, was a new book for me and is a really fun one. If you feel that there might be too many toys at your house, this is the book for you. It is also just a really fun book to read.

 The book helps encourage the idea of paring down or giving some toys away. It also celebrates the fun of a cardboard box, which I always love! We try to do regular toy and book purges, in which we donate items to our local Goodwill story, especially when we get new toys and books, usually after a holiday or (as was the case recently) when a generous neighbor passes on some toys they have outgrown.This regular practice helps the boys learn the value of giving and sharing with others and avoids a home environment promoting excess and materialism.

As for our other favorite this week, often, I am in another room and can hear Wild Thing reading (aka re-telling) Where's My Mom? by Julia Donaldson, the Virtual Book Club for Kids author for March. Right now, we are reading several of her books and also enjoy The Snail and the Whale, but really enjoy the fun of Where's My Mom?, in which a monkey looking for his mommy asks a butterfly for help. As he offers descriptions of his mom to the butterfly, the butterfly takes him throughout the forest to one wrong mom after another (a snake, a frog, an elephant, etc.). The monkey finally exclaims that none of those moms look like him, at which point the butterfly shows the monkey her babies (which are caterpillars) so we understand that a mommy does not have to look like their child. Ultimately, monkey finds his mommy via his daddy. I love this story and the important message it conveys. We did not have time to do an activity and post officially for the March book club, but still enjoyed exploring this new author and seeing the activities of other bloggers also exploring the books of Donaldson, such as this Book Nest post from The Pleasantest Thing.

The Virtual Book Club for Kids has introduced us to so many new and wonderful authors and illustrates perfectly why I love the library -- we can explore all of these authors and read several of their books without spending a dime. How do you discover new authors and books to read with your kids? What are you reading as a family now? Consider joining in with the Virtual Book Club for Kids this month, which you can also explore and enjoy through the VBCK Facebook page or through the VBCK Pinterest board.

Sharing at: The Children's Bookshelf, Mom's Library.     

You might also like:

VBCK: Tomie DePaola
VBCK: David McPhail
VBCK: Mo Willems


  1. I am impressed that are on page 600 of a 700+ page book...all while finding new reading material for your little ones. The book you described sounds a lot like the 'Are you my Mother' classic that I read in childhood and read to our children too. I like that it has a jungle twist. I will have to check it out.

  2. I'm now going to the library this week to get Too Many Toys! I love the concept. We usually do a toy purge every 4-5 months. At Christmas time I had a cookie party for my son's toddler friends and I had everyone bring their toys that they wanted to get rid of to make room for Christmas presents. We donated them to a local non-profit for kids. I love when toys find a new home. Thanks for sharing your great book picks!

  3. I definitely need to borrow Too Many Toys from the library! And we adore that second book - so sweet!

    How are you liking the Lincoln book now you are on page 600?

  4. I think you are forgiven for not starting a second book when you chose a 700 page book! lol Thanks for sharing at The Children's Bookshelf!