Disclosure: This post has been sponsored by Karen B. Winnick.
When my son was younger he never went to bed without us reading a book together. Many nights, we read several books until it was time to progress to chapter books. The time we spent reading together during his formative years helped form the good reading habits he uses now as a junior in high school. His heavy AP course load has a lot of required reading. In fact, if he’s reading a book in his classes that I’m not familiar with, I read them along with him so we can discus the books.
Good Night, Baby Animals, You’ve Had a Busy Day
I still love to read children’s books, and use them when reading with students at our local literacy council. When Karen B. Winnick asked me if I’d review Good Night, Baby Animals You’ve Had a Busy Day, I was happy to read it. Good Night, Baby Animals, You’ve Have a Busy Day, is a beautifully illustrated 64-page treasury of six original stories that feature the true-to-life antics and adventures of young animals in the wild as they eat, play, tumble, romp, and explore their natural habitats and meet other animals who share their surroundings.
When I sat down to read it, I was immediately pulled in with Winnick’s patterned text and use of repetition.
“Tiger noses sniff.
Tiger ears twitch, twitch.
Tiger tails swish, swish, swish.
No matter what adventure the baby tigers are having, their noses sniff, their ears twitch, twitch, and tails swish, swish, swish. Winnick utilizes the same tools throughout the story for each baby animal.
Winnick’s use of repetition throughout the book is a key component of learning, as all learning is a strengthened through repetition. Did you ever wonder why children expect a favorite activity to be repeated again and again and again? Repetition is a necessary building block of development. Children’s brains KNOW that they need repetition. (How many times have you read the same book over and over and over and over?) Kids start to learn the patterns in the book thanks to the repetition and it helps them the predict the text that comes next! It helps build a foundation in early literacy. Do you remember the show Blue’s Clues? The creators did research while developing the show as to what preschoolers wanted to see in the show, and you can probably guess the answer by now – repetition!
Head over to her website to download these free printable activity and coloring pages to create a themed day of learning and fun. I’m particularly fond of the finger puppets, so that you, or your child, can act out the baby animals adventures.
About Karen B. Winnick, children’s author, artist, and animal enthusiast:
Good Night, Baby Animals, You’ve Had a Busy Day is a treasury of six original stories that follows the true-to-life antics and adventures of young animals in the wild as they, eat, play, tumble, romp, and explore their natural habitats and meet other animals who share their surroundings. Children will learn fun and accurate facts about the animals featured: tigers, elephants, rhinos, giraffes, pandas, and gorillas. Filled with action-packed pages, sound effects, and patterned text, Good Night, Baby Animals, You’ve Had a Busy Day is the perfect bedtime story for toddlers and preschoolers.
While Karen’s books entertain children and parents alike, her stories offer her readers far more. Winnick’s picture books, Gemina, The Crooked-Neck Giraffe and the just-released How Lucky Got His Shoe honor those who are differently-abled. Her stories help children to feel better about themselves and are an important reminder to show compassion and respect for others.
How Lucky Got His Shoe tells the story of a Humboldt penguin born at the Santa Barbara Zoo who was having difficulty walking. The zookeepers worried his foot was not growing properly. Teva, a local shoe company, was asked to make him a shoe. If a big elephant with a foot problem could wear one, so could a small penguin. This is the true story, told with affection and illustrated with oil paintings of how Lucky got his shoe, his name and his ability to walk and swim like all the other penguins.
In Gemina: The Crooked-Neck Giraffe Karen tells the story of the very famous Gemina who stood out from the other giraffes at the Santa Barbara Zoo because of her crooked neck. Everyone who saw her wondered if she was ok! Did her neck hurt? As months passed, Gemina’s neck leaned more and more to the side but it never seemed to bother her. Gemina didn’t let her difference stop her from doing anything the other giraffes did. Told with affection and illustrated with oil paintings, Gemina’s story is a celebration of the life of a very special giraffe.
About Karen Winnick:
President of the Los Angeles Zoo Commission, Winnick supports many animals charities including Best Friends Animal Society, the Lange Foundation, the Los Angeles Zoo, WildAid and Wild Earth Allies to name a few.
For more on her books, as well as fun games, visit karenbwinnick.com.