young-readersHelp your child revel in the joys of reading by introducing him or her to award-winning books. The Association for Library Service to Children picks the best of the best for children — and here are just some of the 2016 picks for younger readers (preschoolers through second grade). You might enjoy them, too!

An Ambush of Tigers: A Wild Gathering of Collective Nouns by Betsy R. Rosenthal

Children appreciate this book’s humorous illustrations and fun word play as they discover more about prickles of porcupines and towers of giraffes. And what about parcels of penguins? Shivers of sharks? Publishers Weekly points out the “sheer inventiveness” of this book’s approach, quoting this part of the book:

“When a murder of crows/ leaves barely a trace,/ is a sleuth of bears/hot on the case?” The illustrations add to the fun, as bears wearing fedora hats “snuffle around” with magnifying glasses. The crows? They flee with a “luminous full moon” in the background.

Beep! Beep! Go to Sleep! by Todd Tarpley

In this delightful story, a little boy really wants to go to sleep. Honest! But, he can’t because his three robots keep him awake with one request after another. He tries to help them, taking them into the bathroom for a rotor brush and shield cleaning — but, no luck. The robots are dealing with “sensor aches,” then they need a light — and then oil and a coil, and then they must deal with loose belts and tight bolts.

In frustration, the boy warns them this way: "No more blipping!/Blinking-boinking!/Winking-whirring!/Squinking-oinking!" Did the robots listen? Nope. Now they want a bedtime story.

Illustrations show sheer chaos in the bathroom, with one robot caught up in toilet paper, while another fills the sink with bubbles that overflow and the third robot sprays water. Savvy readers will appreciate the role reversal in this enjoyable bedtime story.

Don’t Throw It to Mo! by David A. Adler

If your child loves sports or cheering on the underdog, then this is the perfect book. Mo loves football so much that his mother wakes him up for school by tossing him a forward pass. He’s on a team of older kids, but mostly practices and then sits on the bench. One day, though, Coach Steve puts Mo in the game — and the other team discounts his ability to score. Then Mo fools them all with a very special play.

This book receives praise for the illustrations that provide early readers with contextual cues; for its simple sentence structure that nevertheless tells an in-depth story; and for its ethnically diverse set of characters.

Drum Dream Girl: How One Girl’s Courage Changed Music by Margarita Engle

If your child loves the realness of nonfiction, then consider this book that was inspired by a true musician. Set in Cuba at a time when no girls were thought to be able to become drummers, Millo Castro Zaldarriaga — a girl of Chinese, African and Cuban heritage — longs to drum. She wanted to pound congas and tap bongos, and so she practiced in secret. And, eventually, her dream and her talent caused the taboo against female drummers to be broken and she became famous.

These are four wonderful books, for sure, but also check out the entire list of 2016 notable books for even more great reads.

Looking to enrich your child’s learning and life? Horizon Education Center provides affordable quality care, including educational and enrichment opportunities for children in the following Northeast Ohio locations.

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