Posted in picture books, Preschool Reads

A Penny’s Worth is just good cents (see what I did there?)

A Penny’s Worth, by Kimberly Wilson/Illustrated by Mark Hoffman, (April 2022, Page Street Kids), $17.99, ISBN: 9781645674689

Ages 4-8

A penny emerges hot off the minting press and ready to take on the world… until she sees other coins and bills getting all the attention, while she sits alone. Penny candy? It’s a dime these days. Arcade game? No way, that’s for quarters. Penny is determined to find her purpose, and when all hope seems lost, she finds it in this sweetly comical story about money and worth. Loaded with money puns, A Penny’s Worth is a great way to start a discussion about money, the rising cost of living, and finding your way when everyone around you says “no”. Mixed media artwork is lively and colorful; the currency all have large, expressive eyes and little limbs, making them eye-catching to young readers. Kids will feel for the poor penny as she’s rejected from a video game and sits sadly in the return slot and receives a lesson in inflation from a dime, who sports a graduate-like mortarboard and black robe, and cheer when she finds her purposes in a child’s smile. Endpapers bookend the story. Back matter includes information about pennies and a bibliography. A nice addition to collections and a fun storytime readaloud.

Pair with books like Rosemary Well’s Bunny Money and Nancy Shaw’s Sheep in a Shop for a money-themed storytime. Print out some Crayola printable money for a fun post-storytime activity.

Posted in Guide, Humor, Tween Reads

The Young Person’s Guide to Grown-Ups, by Monte Montgomery, illustrated by Patricia Storms (Bloomsbury, 2012)

Recommended for ages 9-12
Being a kid is tough. What if there were some sort of guide to figuring out the grown-ups in their lives? Monte Montgomery and Patricia Storms have created a field guide to the average grown-up to help children navigate these strange people who seem to hold so much sway over them.
The book examines grown-ups as seen through a child’s eyes and includes basic similarities and differences between grown-ups and kids: adults, for instance, have stopped growing taller and started growing wider, but have never stopped feeling like the kid they used to be, providing the reader with an entry point with which to relate.
Set up like a Grown-Ups for Dummies book, complete with callout Tactics boxes spotlighting tools for dealing with different situations and line drawings throughout, Young Person’s Guide takes kids through everything they need to know about grown-ups at home, at school, and “in the wild”. Descriptions of various adults in each of these settings and an FAQ flesh out each section. Montgomery imparts Three Universal Truths that kids and adults alike should know and includes an in-depth, illustrated guide to various classes of adults, like atheletes, dentists, police officers and millionaires (complete with Donald Trump-like caricature).
Young Person’s Guide is a fun book that will help younger children feel like they have some handle on why grown-ups say and do the things they do, while helping them understand that adults and kids have much more in common than they may think. It is a fun book that can start conversations both at home and in the classroom.
Patricia Storms’ webpage are as much fun as her illustrations. Infused with bright graphics and personal information, the reader can see that the illustrator takes the message of Young Person’s Guide to heart and keep in touch with the kid that used to look back from the mirror.