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Middle-school librarians Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan prove that two heads are better than one when it comes to discussing YA and children's books

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Wednesday, December 12, 2012 8:01 am
Jump! by Scott M. Fischer
Posted by: Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan

Lynn:  Lucky me!  I’ve been getting to spend time lately with the youngest member of our focus group.  Henry is 2 and loves books and being read to.  Like many little readers, Henry is very fond of reading his favorite books over and over and over again.  Currently I think the entire family could recite The Little Blue Truck (Harcourt 2008) in our sleep.  Beep beep!  This has put my grandmotherly radar on the alert again for books for the toddler set.  When I chanced recently on Jump! (S&S 2010) I knew I had a contender.  This came out two years ago but I thought I’d write about this charming book for those of you who might have missed it like I did.

A repeating pattern refrain begins with, “Well, I’m a bug, I’m a bug.  I’m a snug little bug, and I’m sleeping on a jug.  Until I see a frog and I…JUMP!”  Each new critter ends up jumping onto something else until a whale decides to end the tale by sending a splooshing wave of animals right back home again.  Toddlers will quickly catch the pattern and gleefully join in to shout “JUMP!” at each page turn.  Fischer’s oversize and colorful characters have a strong black outline and a comic flair perfect for young children.  The book is big enough to work well with a story hour or as an exuberant lap book.

Henry loves jumping just as much as he loves being read to so this was a double delight although I don’t recommend this book BEFORE bedtime.  Henry’s big cousins have been practicing reading Jump! aloud and can’t wait till they see him next.  Here’s the whole focus group, with the big boys reading to a sleepy Henry the last time they were all together.

OK – your turn, Bookends, readers.  What is your favorite small child read aloud?


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