I Am Bear by Ben Bailey Smith; Illustrated by Sav Akyüz
Bear is a fun-loving, mischief making, goodhearted bear. This beautiful read-aloud picture book, with its beautiful bold and bright graffiti-esque illustrations, is both Rap-able and rhyme-able. I highly recommend this fun book that craftily adds in a solid basis for helping kids build strong language skills. This book is fun, funny and fa-fa-fabulous (wicky-wicky-flash)! Plus, there is a wonderful accompanying (free) music video which only adds to the rocking, rhyming fun.
Bear Moves by Ben Bailey Smith; Illustrated by Sav Akyüz
In this rollicking sequel to I Am Bear, Bear Moves’s narrative combines strong percussive rhythms with fun, descriptive action words and beautiful, bold, graffiti-esque illustrations to encourage the reader to get up and bust-a-move. I call this the ultimate “Rise-and-Shine” book! Everybody, children and adults alike, will have a good hearty laugh at the word play in this fun, laugh-out-loud, shake-your-tail-feather book.
Thank you to Candlewick Press for sending me these books. All opinions expressed are my own.
Boston Dance Alliance is Inclusion
“Through their new referral service for dancers with disabilities, the Boston Dance Alliance strives to break down barriers to inclusion. I was thrilled to see their action become a reality when I received an interview for and then earned the position to teach a 5-week accessible youth flamenco class at the Cotting School in Lexington. This is a chance of a lifetime, affording me the opportunity to share my love of flamenco with this inclusive community. Thank you BDA for increasing cultural equity and access to dance for diverse communities!
~Eve Costarelli, owner and founder, Always Be Dancing Expressive Arts: Yoga and Flamenco for Every/body
All About Flamenco/Todos Sobre Flamenco by Silvia Oivo
- Aunt Elaine Does The Dance From Spain by Leah Komaiko
- Bird With The Heart Of A Mountain by Barbara Mariconda
- Flamenco Fantasy by Cynthia Ventrola Struven
- Lola’s Fandango by Ann Witte
- Mo Baila Flamenco by Fresia Barrientos Morales
- ¡Olé! Flamenco by George Ancona
- Perlie and The Flamenco Fairy by Wendy Harmer
- Quiero Bailar Flamenco by Azucena Huidobro
- Spain by Susie Brooks
- Spain: The Culture by Noa Lior
- Thea Stilton and The Spanish Dance Mission by Thea Stilton
- Today I Am A Dancer by Marisa Polansky
- With Love From Spain by Carol Weston
Just in time for the holiday season, comes a soon-to-be classic retelling of the Nutcracker. In this version, the mice live their animated lives right along side the humans at the Marinsky Theater, the historic theatre of opera and ballet in Saint Petersburg, Russia, living in the walls, scavenging for food and dancing ballet. Author Kristin Kladstrup has created an enchanting version of the Nutcracker from the mice’s point of view, bringing the mice to the forefront, and switching around the roles within the story so that mice are the heroes of main characters.
Fun mouse facts are included: Mice do not like peppermint. Mice have fun names such as: Herr Drosselmouse, Esmerelda and Maksim– so much fun to say out loud, as they tickle your tongue and your ear with the sounds of foreign lands. The accompanying drawings by Brett Helquist are wonderfully expressive and reminiscent of other children’s classics such as Charlotte’s Webb and Harriet The Spy.
This is an instant holiday classic and with the included mouse-centric script at the back of the book, will be great for the young balletomane’s collection (I can imagine it being used by budding choreographers.)
Thank you to Candlewick Press for sending me a copy of this delightful book. All opinions expressed are my own.
Book Reviews by Eve: Two books from Candlewick Press that highlight dance and rhythm are Boys Dancing by George Ancona & Tap Tap Boom Boom by Elizabeth Bluemle.
Boys Dancing by George Ancona is the second book I know by the author, the first being ¡Olé! Flamenco, which is another great non-fiction book about dance. Both books include fun photo illustrations that really highlight the story. In Boys Dancing, I like the foot step pattern that leads you through the pages of the book. These kids faces really tell the whole story. They are so engaging and engaged. You can see form their faces their focus, determination and joy at dancing. The instructor is equally connected and together they learn about dancing with their bodies, minds and energies. This story shows the dedicated dancers and teachers and how a whole production comes together, from school gym to studio to stage. Dance is for boys. It is community building and the story shows how hard work is fun and rewarding. ¡Olé!
Tap Tap Boom Boom by Elizabeth Bluemle lives up to its name as a great choice of onomatopoeia for a rain storm. The delightful illustrations by G. Brian Karas are a cross between photo realism and sweet cartoonish images. The reader not only looks at the scenes, but also up and down and from within them. You feel like one of the pack of people escaping the rain storm! This is a very engaging and entertaining story that promotes community, friendship and the love of a good rain storm!
Thank you to Candlewick Press for sending me these books. All opinions are my own.