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Education Matters

Must-Reads For Spring

May 1st, 2016

By Sarah Schmidt

  1. Detective Camp (A to Z Mysteries Super Edition, No. 1)

o Written by: Ron Roy

o Age Range: 6-9 years

o Grade Level: 1-4

Dink, Ruth Rose, and Josh have gone to sleep away camp to learn detective  skills. Little do they know, but Dink, Ruth Rose, and Josh will have to put their  newly learned skills to the test to solve a real mystery while at camp!

This Super Edition is an extension of the popular A to Z Mysteries series. With  a longer plot, adventure, and relatable characters, this beginner mystery  chapter book is bound to hold the attention of elementary school level readers while introducing the concept of going to a sleep away camp. Creating an extra level of motivation for new and reluctant readers, Ron Roy also includes hidden clues in the  illustrations that need to be solved as the mystery unfolds!

  1. Flashlight

o Written by: Lizi Boyd

o Age Range: 2-6 years

o Grade Level: Preschool-1

Explored through a visual poem, artist Lizi Boyd helps readers discover the charm and magic of what happens outside in the dark. With no text, each page encourages the reader to create their own dialogue and journey as they discover nature at night in a style similar to "I Spy".  Flashlight is a perfect wordless picture book to soothe any fears of the dark prior to or while on a camping trip.

  1. Sleepless Knight

o Written by: James Sturm

o Age Range: 3-5 years

o Grade Level: Preschool

The characters from the "Adventures in Cartooning" series are introduced to readers in a graphic novel format as the Knight and horse Edward embark on their first camping trip! Illustrated using comic elements, Sleepless Knight is a great introduction to comics and graphic novels. With relatable comedy for readers of all ages, Sleepless Knight is a simple, yet engaging bedtime story that can be read whether camping outdoors or in your living room! This  story is great as read aloud between parent and child or as a first book for young readers wanting to start reading on their own. As an added bonus, the step-by-step instructional drawings found on the first and last pages provide a simple how-to draw the story's characters encouraging readers to take them on their own adventures.

  1. Alvin Ho: Allergic to Camping, Hiking, and Other Natural Disasters

o Written by: Lenore Look

o Age Range: 6-10 years

o Grade Level: 1-4

Alvin Ho is back and is still afraid of everything! In the second installment of the Alvin Ho Series, Alvin, his sister Anibelly, and his Dad set off on a camping trip. Despite being petrified of everything involved with camping (bear attacks, natural disasters, and pit toilets), Alvin ends up overcoming some of his fears and somewhat enjoying the camping trip. Similar in humour to the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, Alvin's comedic adventures are perfect for beginning and reluctant readers who are wanting to take the next step in reading chapter books.

  1. Camp Out!: The Ultimate Kids' Guide

o Written by: Lynn Brunelle

o Age Range: 10-13 years

o Grade Level: 5-8

This guide is full of practical information, games, skills, songs, and recipes to help any kid make the most out of any outdoor adventure! Ideal for ages 7 years and older, the information in this how-to camping guide is supported by fun illustrations. A great resource for the first time camper to camping enthusiast, Camp Out! gives readers plenty of fun tips, experiments and activities to try with friends and family all spring and summer long!

  1. The Berenstain Bears Go To Camp

o Written by: Jan and Stan Berenstain

o Age Range: 3-7 years

o Grade Level: Preschool-2

The Berenstain Bears Go To Camp is a classic picture book story for young readers to read before they head off to camp! Sent to Grizzly Bob's Day Camp during summer break, Brother and Sister Bear experience a few ups and downs of being away from home. Ultimately, they enjoy their time at camp as they meet new friends and learn and try new activities on their own. This fun story is perfect for helping to ease first time away from home nerves or pre-camp jitters!

  1. When Spring Comes

o Written by: Kevin Henkes

o Illustrated by: Laura Dronzek

o Age Range: 4-8 years

o Grade Level: Preschool-3

This delightful ode to spring is the perfect read aloud picture book that can be read again and again. Through the combination of beautiful verdant paintings by Laura Dronzek and a text full of imagery, alliterations and repetitions by Kevin Henkes, When Spring Comes is a gorgeous story that poetically describes the transformation of winter into spring. Living in a Northern Alberta climate, this text is wonderfully relatable as we often have our own countdown to spring after a long winter.

  1. Finding Spring

o Written by: Carin Berger

o Age Range: 4-8 years

o Grade Level: Preschool-3

Baby bear Maurice has never experienced spring before can't wait for his first spring! So excited, Maurice can't fall asleep to hibernate so he decides to go find spring himself. With captivating artwork resembling paper collages, this delightful story embodies all of the excitement and sense of wonder that children possess in their anticipation for spring and the vibrant changes that come with the new season.

  1. Wake up, Spring

o Written by: Florian Ferrier

o Age Range: 7-10 years

o Grade Level: 1-5

Hotel Strange closes every winter while everyone hibernates. As Marietta, Kiki, and Mr. Leclair awake to the sound of guests at their door, they discover that it is March, but Spring has still not arrived! With the help of some other creatures, they set off on an adventure to get rid of winter and wake up spring! Wake up, Spring is the first tale of mystery and adventure in the Hotel Strange series of graphic novels. With easy to follow text, the dialogue is not overpowering to young readers. The graphic novel is full of animated illustrations and the characters are presented in a quirky yet cute manner which supports the tale of mystery and adventure. It is a great segue for young and reluctant readers that may not want to read or are ready for a chapter book.

Sarah Schmidt is a Reference Services Librarian for Wood Buffalo Regional Library.

Tags: advice, Books, kids

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