My Teacher Is A Monster! By Peter Brown

My Teacher Is A MonsterTwo of my closest female friends are primary school teachers so when I spotted this I knew we had to buy it!

The story is about a little boy called Bobby who doesn’t like school because he is always getting told off by his teacher, Miss Kirby. He doesn’t like her and thinks she’s a monster!

Then one weekend he bumps in to her when he’s walking in his favourite park, and neither of them are quite sure what to do. They both feel a little awkward seeing each other outside of school. Just as it’s becoming super uncomfortable a gust of wind catches Miss Kirby’s favourite hat and blows it away.

Bobby manages to save the hat and in the process learns a little bit more about Miss Kirby and she learns a little bit more about him. Bobby comes to realise that she’s not a monster at all. She’s just a regular person – who is actually rather nice! – and just needs to be strict at school because it’s her job (and because he’s actually quite naughty).

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Piranhas Don’t Eat Bananas By Aaron Blabey

Piranhas Don't Eat BananasBrian is a piranha who loves nothing more than to tuck in to some fruit and veg – but his piranha friends think he’s bonkers because their favourite pastime is nibbling on tasty humans.

Brian’s attempts at converting them fall on deaf ears and soon they’re fed up with him waving bananas and plums in front of their faces. He agrees to stop but on one condition – they need to actually taste one of his fruit and veg platters. Will he be able to convince them to swap knees for peas or will they continue with their carnivorous ways?

Ivy finds this book hilarious, especially as it features the word ‘bum’. Always a winner with toddlers!

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Freddie And The Fairy By Julia Donaldson & Karen George

Freddie And The fairyThis lovely book about hearing loss was recommended to us by one of our recent interviewees – Nell Nash of Tatty Rose. I really liked the look of it so bought us a copy and it’s currently one of Ivy’s favourite bedtime reads.

The story is about a little boy called Freddie who finds a fairy called Bessie-Belle tangled in a tree. He helps her down and she says she will grant him some wishes to say thank you. She tells him that she can’t hear very well and if you look carefully at the illustrations you can see that she’s wearing a little blue hearing aid.

Freddie doesn’t really understand this though so he mumbles when he asks for his wishes. He really wants a pet but because she can’t hear him the fairy doesn’t quite get it right. Freddie’s requests for a cat, a dog or a parrot result in a bat, a frog and a carrot – none of which make great pets!

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Hiding Heidi By Fiona Woodcock

Hiding HeidiIvy loves to play Hide & Seek so when I spotted this book I knew I had to get it for our little library.

The story is about a girl called Heidi who is extremely skilled at Hide & Seek. She plays it all the time with her friends and she always wins which makes her feel great. It never occurs to her that her friends might want to do something else.

On Heidi’s birthday she has a party at her house and they all play her favourite game. However she hides so well that they don’t find her until the very end of the party, which means she has missed out on all the balloons and ice cream with her friends. They all had fun together whilst she was on her own.

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Ivy’s Guest Book: Maria Bateson, Owner & Maker, Maria Made It

Maria Made ItTell us a little bit about yourself and your family

Hi, I’m Maria, owner and maker at Maria Made It.  I make silver handprint and fingerprint jewellery and keepsakes. Everything is made to order, by hand, by me.

I have 3 children: a boy and two girls aged 8, 6 and 3 and we love reading, we also have a lot of books!  We are currently living in Belgium, but we are from South East London. We will be heading back there next year.

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Bumpus Jumpus Dinosaurumpus By Tony Mitton & Guy Parker-Rees

Bumpus Jumpus DinosaurumpusIf you have a child who rejects story time because they don’t like to sit still then Bumpus Jumpus Dinosaurumpus might be the book that you’re looking for. The infectious rhyme encourages your child to dance around and I defy anyone to read this aloud without wiggling a little themselves!

The story introduces you to a whole host of dinosaurs as they take part in a Dinosaurumpus – a noisy, bouncy and frankly bonkers celebration of who they are. They twizzle, spin, bomp and stomp together until they hear a giant roar. What on earth is making that scary noise and will it want to eat them up or just join in the fun?

We’ve read this one so many times that Ivy joins in with the ‘chorus’ and bangs the sofa like a drum in time with they way I read the rhyme. We started off just reciting it but these days it’s more like (extremely amateur!) performance art as I rap the lyrics (badly) and she bounces up and down and squeals with delight. It’s definitely not a bedtime book in our house!

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The Everywhere Bear By Julia Donaldson & Rebecca Cobb

The Everywhere BearThe Everywhere Bear belongs to Class One. During the week he sits on a shelf in Mrs MacAllister’s classroom and observes all of his friends as they learn their lessons and listen to stories. At the weekends he goes home with one of the children for an adventure and on Monday they come back and tell the rest of the class what they have done. He lives an exciting life!

One rainy Monday morning he is travelling back to school after a lovely weekend with a new boy called Matt when suddenly he falls out of Matt’s backpack and is washed down a drain. The Everywhere Bear is about to have his biggest adventure yet!

He ends up in the sea, gets caught in a fisherman’s net, is delivered to a fish shop, thrown in the bin and then stolen by a seagull – but will he ever end up back with his friends in Class One?

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Happy By Nicola Edwards & Katie Hickey

HappyOur choice for World Mental Health Day is this lovely book of mindfulness, which encourages children to slow down and connect with the world around them.

Each double page focuses on a sense or emotional state – listening, feeling, relaxing, tasting, touching, discovering, smelling, loving, appreciating and breathing. There is a simple rhyme for each one which encourages your child to stop and anchor themselves in their surroundings or the way they are feeling. Many of the pages also feature a question or instruction which will provoke additional conversation.

The illustrations are both calming and intensely detailed so there are lots of interesting things for your child to take in.

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Ivy’s Guest Book: Maxine Kerley, Owner, Digital Bon Bons

Digital Bon BonsTell us a little bit about yourself and your family

Hi, I’m Maxine. I live in Kent with my husband Patrick, our daughter Ava who’s 4, two kittens called Polly & Tigger and a snake called Kaa. I’m a digital marketing consultant for family focused brands and businesses.

What is your son/daughter’s favourite book?

For Ava it’s  The Gruffalo and Stick Man by Julia Donaldson – we have read these to her ever since she was super little and The Gruffalo was one of the first books she started to recite by herself at 22 months, she knew all the words – we couldn’t believe it. She loves the stories. Plus going on the hunt for a Gruffalo or following a Stick Man trail if we’re out for a walk. She will always pick up a “Stick Man” to take home.

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Sky Color By Peter H. Reynolds

Sky ColorMarisol is an artist. She loves to paint and has a little art gallery at home where she displays all of her best work. She dresses how she thinks an artist should dress and she wants all of her friends to embrace their creativity too. If you’re a fan of Peter H. Reynolds‘ books you may have already come across her as the encouraging little sister in fab story ‘Ish’.

When Marisol’s teacher announces that the class is going to create a huge mural for the school library she is very excited. She can’t wait to get the paints out and get started! Together the class sketch out a giant picture and they each select a section to paint. Marisol excitedly declares that she will paint the sky.

But there’s one problem – when she gets to the paint box there is no blue paint. Everyone knows the sky is blue, so what on earth is she going to do?

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