It’s National Library Week and to celebrate I thought I’d kick off my new section of the blog on Children’s Literature by featuring some fun books on none other than our family’s favorite feathered friends – chickens!
The library has always been one of my favorite places to go ever since I was a child. Now that I have my own children, it’s still one of my favorite places to go and take them along with me!
We are extremely blessed in our community with an exceptional local library and staff. I have watched them over the last several years continue to improve the children’s section little by little and transform it into something really special.
They also provide wonderful programming including story times, puppet shows and different themed events all year round. My kids and I really enjoy and benefit from their hard efforts.
As a rule of thumb, most libraries let you keep books you check out for a period of about 3 weeks. We often tend to check out 2 dozen books or more at a time and sometimes renew them after the 3 weeks are up to enjoy reading them a little bit longer.
We have discovered so many great new stories this way. Some of our most favorite books have been discovered by chance picking out a new story among the library bins.
A lot of times, when I am choosing a story for my child, I will ask myself a few different questions:
- Is this a topic they would find interesting? (ex: a story on ballet for my daughter who loves to dance, or a book about trains for my son)
- Is this a relevant story to something currently happening in our lives? (ex: books on holidays, new babies, going to school, etc.)
- Is this a story that I would actually want to read them? (I try to stay away from checking out books I know will not be worth our time to read together – if it’s too long or too wordy sometimes it will really drive me bananas reading it out loud more than once!)
On our most recent visit to the library a few weeks ago, I stumbled across some really cute new stories all about chickens. Since we have 5 of our own, and I know my kids love them, these books were coming home with us!
Here they are – in no particular order – if you’d like to look for them and check them out for yourselves the next time you take your own kiddos to the library.
The ladies of Iceland have a problem: the birds lay their eggs in nooks on the sides of steep cliffs, so the ladies have a very difficult time getting any of the eggs for baking. They go to town to buy chickens to lay eggs for them instead. For a while, everyone is happy: there are plenty of eggs to bake plenty of yummy things. But the ladies’ problems are far from solved, for the more time the chickens spend with the ladies, the more they begin to act like them too, until eventually they stop laying eggs all together. Now this is a problem indeed, but you can be sure, the clever ladies will find a solution. Full of fun and silliness, this lighthearted tale and vibrant illustrations are a delight.
Peggy the hen is contented with her quiet existence and daily routine. When a powerful gust of wind sweeps her up and deposits her in the midst of a busy city, she explores her new surroundings, makes new friends, and cleverly figures out how to get home—with a newly kindled appetite for adventure. Evocative full-color paintings follow Peggy’s journey, offering comical details that reward repeated viewing. This reassuring tale and its unruffled heroine invites discussions of exploration, safety, and resourcefulness.
Extraordinary hen P. Zonka spends her time taking in the beauty around her: the shiny green of the grass, the buttery yellows of the dandelions, the deep blue of the sky. The other hens can’t understand why she never lays eggs like they do. Finally, P. Zonka gives in and lays an egg. To everyone’s delight, she produces a wondrous egg that contains all the colors and designs that she has stored in her creative imagination.
Mei Mei has the six happiest hens in China. She gives them treats and fresh hay baths, and when she calls to them-gu gu gu gu gu!-they all run to her as fast as they can. But one of the hens, Daisy, is not always so happy. The other hens pick on Daisy and push her off the perch every night, knowing that she is too small to stand up to them. Then one day Daisy accidentally drifts out onto the river in a basket and must quickly learn how to survive. When Daisy finds her way home, this plucky little hen is no longer afraid.
Jan Brett and her husband, Joe, traveled with their daughter-in-law, Yun, and her husband, Sean, to China, the land where Yun was born. During this trip, Jan found the inspiration for Daisy’s story.
Mommy Fox has gone hunting for a chicken for supper. Yum! Her five cubs can’t wait. They even sneak out of their den. But it’s scary outside at night and one of them could get lost. In fact, one of them could already be lost! The five little foxes take turns counting one another and―gasp!―they only count to four! It takes an unexpected feathery visitor to calm down the cubs and lead them safely back to their den, where Mommy Fox is busy preparing a very special supper…
All of these chicken stories were so much fun to check out and read with my kiddos! I hope you will strut yourself on over to your local library this week and maybe look for these great books or something else that fits your feather…Happy Reading!
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