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Ages 3-7: Metro Parent Summer 2011 Reading List

Little kids ready to hit the vacation books? Two southeast Michigan libraries offer top classics, new releases and hidden gems.

Ready for summer vacation with your little one? Pique the literary interest of your budding preschool or kindergarten bookworm with some fantastic, fun reads. To get you started, Metro Parent got in touch with two local libraries, the Ferndale Public Library and St. Clair Shores Public Library, to hunt down the best in classics, new releases and "undiscovered gems," all geared at ages 3 to 7. Be sure to add your favorites to the comments section below!

Classics

Love You Forever by Robert Munsch: This book tells the story of a mother's love for her son throughout the years. The story is written in song format and is sure to warm the hearts of parents and little ones.

Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak: A story full of creative creatures and ideas, Where the Wild Things Are encourages children to stretch their imaginations and will add a new dimension to story time. Join Max and the Wild Things on their adventures through Max's imaginary forest to discover that home is where the heart is.

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff: Who knew mice could be so greedy? In this charming picture book, a mouse takes advantage of a young boy's kindness by demanding a long list of items he needs to go along with his cookie. Your little one will be giggling along with this rodent's silly antics.

New releases

A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip C. Stead: When much-loved zookeeper Amos McGee takes a sick day from work, his animal friends travel from the zoo to keep him company. This adorable story shows the meaning of true friendship and is complete with delightful, realistic illustrations.

Elephant and Piggie Series by Mo Willems: The ultimate best friend duo! Gerald the elephant is cautious and rational while his friend Piggie the pig is a fun-loving risk-taker. Each book in the series is a hilarious new adventure that children will look forward to reading over and over again.

I Ain't Gonna Paint No More! by Karen Beaumont: In this colorful tale, a little boy goes on a painting frenzy, painting all over the house and himself! Written to the tune of "It Ain't Gonna Rain No More," this entertaining story will have your kids singing along with every swipe of the paintbrush.

Yoko Writes Her Name by Rosemary Wells: Yoko, a Japanese kitten, is a kindergarten student who reads and writes in Japanese. When she writes her name on the board, her classmates tell her that she won't be able to go on to first grade because she can only "scribble" her name. After some wise words from her mother and the help of her teacher, Yoko and her classmates recognize the value of knowing more than one language and appreciating different cultures.

Undiscovered gems

Perfect Square by Michael Hall: This creative story focuses on a square and all the possibilities that the shape presents when it is cut, hole-punched, folded and more. Your child will love watching the square transform into a variety of figures, such as a fountain, bridge or mountain. Great for teaching kids about the importance of imagination.

Alphabeasties: And Other Amazing Types by Sharon Werner: This is no ordinary alphabet book! Alphabeasties presents the alphabet using animals made up of different typefaces of the same letter. More than just pleasing to the eye, this book is written in a fun-to-read, rhyming style. Kids will enjoy lifting the flap to discover what alphabeastie is hiding underneath!

All the Water in the World by George Ella Lyon: Written in a concrete verse poetic style, this story explains the importance of water to people and other living things all over the planet. The elegant writing is accompanied by brightly colored digital illustrations.

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