Every morning and every afternoon we walk past a darling garden center. It holds busy, colorful rows of flowers shelved and hung from every inch. The cheerful owner waves good morning to us as he waters the flowers and my kids happily wave back.
Yesterday afternoon we went in.
We were on the way home from school and my daughter tugged on my arm. “I want to go in there mama.” she whispered like she was telling me her greatest secret.
So in we wandered.
We walked those overflowing happy rows. We flipped through the packets of seeds. And a while later we walked out with what we needed to plant our own little window garden in our tiny New York apartment.
Watching my kids skip all the way home felt like Spring to me. They eagerly opened the packets and helpfully covered my kitchen in dirt.
The perky blooms in our window tell me it is Spring as much as the basket on our coffee table.
Below are the books to get you inspired for your own Springtime moment and some fun activities to go along with them. I can’t wait to see what you come up with!
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Ideas for Week #19: In the Garden
Monday: Read a Book about Gardens
Jack’s Garden by Henry Cole
This is the garden that Jack built. How simply this detailed nonfiction book begins. Teeming with facts and excellent vocabulary about gardening and spring, all carefully hiding amongst lyrical language and soft pencil drawings. Jack’s Garden is sure to make you start planting and looking at gardens in a whole new light.
Read Also: Preschool Planting Unit
Tuesday: Read a Book about Flowers
Flower Garden by Eve Bunting
I love this sweet, colorful book. It is the story of a little girl and her dad who plant a window garden as a gift for her mom. It is a common every day world and family brought to life with love and color in such a beautiful way.
Read Also: Spring Flower Hunt with Preschoolers
Wednesday: Read a Book about Vegetables
The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss
This is a classic story and one of the most perfect little books for toddlers. A little boy plants a seed. He is determined that it will grow but everyone in his family shares their doubts. He persists in caring for it nonetheless and ultimately his efforts are rewarded with the largest carrot ever drawn on paper.
Thursday: Read a Book about Dirt or Mud
Bloom by Doreen Cronin and David Small
Bloom is a fairy happy to share her magic in this tale from the bestselling author of CLICK CLACK MOO. Unfortunately, the people in the glass kingdom only see the trail of mud that she leaves everywhere she goes and banish her from the palace. Years in the future when the glass kingdom is crumbling, they go in search of Bloom and her magic. Ultimately, Bloom, an ordinary girl, and puddles of mud save the kingdom. I love the ink and watercolor illustrations and the empowering message about what ordinary people and mud can accomplish.
Read Also: Mud Making Messy Sensory Play for Toddlers
Friday: Read a Book about Seeds
A Seed is Sleepy by Dianna Hutts Aston and Sylvia Long
There is a wonderful nonfiction series by these two and they are all graced with gentle words and illustrations. Beneath the flowing text and soft paintings however is good interesting science. This is full of pages of different kinds of seeds and fascinating little details.
Read Also: Growing a Seed Storytime
Saturday: Read a Book about Bugs
Yoo-Hoo Ladybug by Mem Fox
I adore Mem Fox’s storytelling and Laura Ljungkvist’s inventive illustrations. This reads like a look and find book. Can you find ladybug? Charming and fun.
Read Also: Big Bug Art from Fantastic Fun and Learning
Sunday Author Spotlight: Eric Carle
Eric Carle is one of the most well known and beloved children’s book creators. You probably know his most famous work, The Very Hungry Caterpillar. It has sold an incredible 44 million copies in 62 languages around the world. Since it was published in 1969, Eric Carle has illustrated more than 70 books. His books are full of color, life, and many of the things children love the most. Visiting his museum of picture book art is one of the things I most want to do while living in New York.
10 Rubber Ducks by Eric Carle
We have a ton of Eric Carle books and we love them all, but part of this challenge is finding books you haven’t read. This was a new one for us a couple months ago and it is a fun story about 10 rubber ducks that fall off a boat and into the ocean. This is based on a newspaper article that Carle read and I love how he imagined what happened to those little lost duckies.
Find More Ideas: Gardens + Bugs Board on Pinterest!
This month’s challenge is sponsored by Music With Nancy. Combining her background in both education and composing, Nancy Kopman’s goal is to create music for kids that has a purpose. I know CDs aren’t books, but for us the two so often go together. Whenever I plan a storytime I immediately start brainstorming what amazing read alouds and what fun songs I know for a topic.
What I love most about her songs is their possibilities for teaching and learning. Her songs are fun for kids to sing, but they also teach kids about body parts, counting, weather, right/left and more. To this day if you ask my kids what the names of the planets are they will launch into singing Planets, Planets by Nancy.
In short, I am SO EXCITED about this you guys! We love her songs and she is the sweetest person and here’s the really big news – Nancy has a set of all 4 of her CDs for THREE WINNERS this month!
Wonderful You (2014)
The Seasons (2013)
“I Know I’ll Grow…” (2009)
What do you need to do to enter to win one of these sets of 4 CDs?
Tag a photo to #aReadaDayMAY to enter by Thursday June 1 at midnight. Don’t forget you can tag what you’re reading as often as you’d like. Not sure what I’m talking about? Details about our challenge are in this post. Each photo is counted as an entry. Winner will be announced on Friday, June 2!
Good Luck and Happy Reading!