Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Busy Life of Ernestine Buckmeister

The Busy Life of Ernestine Buckmeister should be on a must-read list for parents. Ernestine's parents only want the very best for her, so they enroll her numerous extracurricular activities: yoga, tuba lessons, karate, knitting, water ballet, etc. Ernestine even has a nanny who's main job is to get her to all of her activities. Ernestine is envious of the boy next door, who gets to play in his backyard. Finally, Ernestine decides it's time to take action and she runs away with Nanny to the park. When her parents try to find her, they realize just how hectic Ernestine's life has become. 
So many kids would be able to relate to Ernestine's dilemma, from elementary-aged children all the way through high school. The activities may be different, but the feelings are the same.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Here Comes the Garbage Barge!

Boy, was I skeptical when I first picked up this book. In fact, I would say I thought the cover was downright creepy. The guy on the front looked a bit scary and I wasn't sure how a book about garbage was going to be interesting enough to keep me reading for 32 pages. 
Jonah Winter's Here Comes the Garbage Barge is based on a true incident that occurred in 1987. This book tells the tale of 3,200 tons of garbage that went on a 162-day journey. While some of the book is fictionalized, it is based on actual events. This is a great book for beginning a discussion on recycling, the environment, reducing our waste, landfills, etc.
The illustrations are unusual and this short video shows how the sets were created.