How to participate in Picture Book Club …
  1. Get the suggested books from your library or bookstore (local or online). See PICTURE BOOK CLUB BOOK LIST for the complete list of books for each week.
  2. Before reading each of the weekly books to your child, READ FIRST “What Adults Can Learn from This Story.”
  3. Read one or both books to your child as many times through the week as your child wants to hear them and you have time to read.
  4. Consider doing whatever activities you think are appropriate for the age and maturity of your child from “Make This Story Come Alive for Your Child.”



(a story about the importance of dads)
In BECAUSE I’M YOUR DAD, a dad shared all the ways he thinks, feels, and plays with his child. He said he will always find his child and make him feel safe, feed him spaghetti for breakfast, make sure he knows how to pogo-stick, and roll him up in a blanket like a burrito.e It is easy to see how important dads are in a child’s life.
“What Adults Can Learn from This Story …”
  • Daddies play differently than mommies do. They are more active, physical, and use bigger muscles. They bounce, lift, and tumble. Kids can tell these differences between dad-play and mom-play, and they love it when dad is their playmate.
  • Mommies have special ways to play and be with their kids too. They are soft, cuddly, talk a lot, and play with toys and games. Kids can feel the difference between Dad’s big, quick movements and Mom’s smaller, slower movements, and they need both Mom’s calmer, more soothing play and Dad’s bigger, louder, stronger play.
  • How a dad plays and talks to his daughter sets the stage for how she thinks about boys and men as a “tweener,” teenager, and young woman. The relationship that is formed with Dad will shape the kind of relationships she will have with boys and men as she grows older.
  • Many dads are soft, loving, affectionate, and comforting. They carry, cuddle, kiss, and miss their children.
  • It is important that daddies kiss, cry, cook, soothe, bandage ouches, give baths, change diapers, and rock to sleep. If only moms comforted children these ways, children would have half as much comfort in their lives.  With dads joining in, kids get twice as much loving.”
“Make this Story Come Alive for Your Child …”
  • Ask your child what he liked best of the things Dad did in the picture book.
  • If your child is willing, arrange for Dad (or grandfather, uncle, or trusted male friend) to read the picture book to your child.
  • Tell your child about special things you and your Dad did when you were young. If you didn’t have such experiences, you can tell about special things you did with another important man in your life.


(a story about kids deciding who they want to be)
In GEORGE UPSIDE DOWN George loved “… to be upside down.” He liked to play the trumpet, paint pictures, read books, watch TV, and many other things while upside down. George’s father, mother, teacher, and other adults thought upside-down was not a good position for riding in a car, eating, or learning. The school nurse sent George to the principal “ … so he’ll behave.” When George went to the principal’s office upside down, the principal said “nothing.” However, George found his parents, tutor, teacher, and school nurse also upside down in the principal’s office. After George saw everyone in the principal’s office upside-down, just like him, he said nothing, but he “LEAPS! Back to class.” And, he suddenly reinvented himself, becoming Super George instead of Upside-down George.
“What Adults Can Learn from This Story …”
  • Children need attention and to see themselves as special.
  • Children are in such great need of attention that if that need builds up without being met, misbehavior can be the result. If adults ignore bad behavior, often hoping not to encourage it, the child still needs the attention and may continue misbehaving – maybe even in bigger ways.
  • Messages you give your children are important doses of attention. Telling them that they are special and that you like who they are is a big dose of attention that they can hold onto. They then can draw on those messages when they need attention and be less likely to use misbehavior to get attention.”
  • Children need to know their specialness is OK and that others like them just the way they are. They naturally find ways to set themselves apart from others in order to feel special.
“Make this Story Come Alive for Your Child …”
  • Ask your child what he thinks it would be like to do things upside down.
  • Tell your child that George being upside down makes him different from other children. It is a special thing about George. Tell your child what you think is special about him or her.
  • Ask your child why he thinks George stopped being upside down.
  • Ask your child why he thinks George became Super George.
  • Show your child that you love him even when he is acting much younger than his age. It is important to give him time to do those things that he knows best (the younger things) because it gives him the boost he needs to be ready to learn more gown up behaviors.
    • Crawl with your child even though she is ready to try first steps. If you need to see she is making progress toward her first steps, you can help her walk in between crawling sessions or pull her up once in a while as part of the crawling play.
    • Tumble around on the floor with your child if that is what he is pulling you to do. If you are worried about him spending more time learning words and numbers, you can play word and math games as part of the wrestling and climbing activities.
    • Rub her your child’s back at bedtime if she wants to be babied. No harm to her growing up will be done because first thing in the morning you can still expect her to be responsible and independent like she usually is.
    • Read to him occasionally even if he can read all by himself.
  • Show your child that he is special:
    • If a very young crawler or toddler, get on the floor at his level, eye-to-eye, to play with him.
    • If school age, when she is more interested in using her big muscles than using her mind, meet her outside for some physical activity before insisting on homework.
    • At any age, hear him out when he wants to talk endlessly about his favorite toy, music (no matter how strange), latest video game, tarantulas, or any other unusual special interest. Don’t take over his interest, just listen and learn. Let his interest to be hisinterest and him be the expert. Just pay attention and be impressed.
Past PICTURE BOOK CLUB postings:


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