Monday, November 9, 2009

Lois Ehlert's Birthday

Today is Lois Ehlert's birthday... and I've got some awesome books to share with you to celebrate! They're perfect for this Harvest time of year, so hopefully you'll find a chance to share these with your little ones!

Ehlert, Lois.
Leaf Man.
September 2005.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
Guided Reading Level: K

Summary from Barnes & Noble:

A man made of leaves blows away, traveling wherever the wind may take him.

I love everything about this book - the story, the art, the creativity it inspires! Children absolutely love this book and will be chuckling throughout as they observe all of the different creatures that can be formed out of leaves. I was fortunate enough to be able to use this book as the basis of a craft project with during one week of the reading program I run at the library. First we read the story and discussed the different creatures that were formed. Then, I gave each child a page of these stickers, purchased from Oriental Trading. On a sheet of paper (we used black, but any color will do), I encouraged children to use their imagination to create a Leaf Man or Leaf Animal of their own. They were free to use as many or as few stickers as they wanted. Once they were satisfied, I used a small laminating machine (purchased at WalMart) and turned their Leaf Creatures into placemats that could be used throughout the fall season. The kids loved this activity and were thrilled to have a craft project that would last for falls to come!

Lesson Plans/Reading Activities:
Ehlert, Lois.
Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf.
September 1991.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
Guided Reading Level: J

Summary from Barnes & Noble:

A child describes the growth of a maple tree from seed to sapling.

This is another wonderful book by Lois Ehlert to read during the fall season, although it isn't specifically dedicated to fall, as it teaches children the life-cycle of a maple tree. This book would be a welcome addition to any unit focusing on the life-cycle of various plants. Childrens' eyes are sure to be drawn to the collage-style illustrations that are done in true Ehlert fashion and teachers and parents will love the educational aspect of the book!

Ehlert, Lois.
Boo to You!
August 2009.
Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing.

Summary from Barnes & Noble:

The harvest garden is bursting with delicious vegetables, the pumpkins are decorated and lit, and the mice have their costumes ready. Everyone is looking forward to the annual Halloween-night feast. Scary Cat wasn't invited to the party, but he seems to think he's coming anyway. Hmmm, time to come up with a clever mouse-style trick to outsmart him!

I think what draws me the most to Lois Ehlert's works are the amazing collage-style illustrations. They're very much inspiring and easy to create (especially for children who feel they are lacking artistic talent), as everyday objects are combined in a variety of methods to form these incredible pages! In this particular book, many of the objects used in the collage illustrations are fruits and vegetables that are part of the typical fall harvest (gourds, pumpkin seeds, nuts, broccoli, indian corn, etc), making it more than appropriate as a read-aloud for this time of the year! I think this is one I'll definitely be adding to my fall bookshelf in the near future!

If you're interested in finding out more information about any of the books reviewed or if you'd like to purchase the books, click the cover image for a link to