Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Beginning Reader Series: Houndsley and Catina

I remember how exciting it is when your child first starts to read. I also remember how difficult it can be to find the right books to test out their new skills. You want books that are easy enough to read and stimulating enough to hold their attention. James Howe (of Bunnicula fame) has created a lovely series of beginning reader books about the adventures of Houndsley and Catina.

The latest in the series is Houndsley and Catina Plink and Plunk. Houndsley (a dog) and Catina (a cat) are best friends, despite their very different interests (and very different personalities). Houndsley likes to canoe, and Catina likes to bike. Without giving away the plot, through a series of adventures they discover things about each other they didn't know before. It's a gentle book that celebrates friendship, as well as the differences between friends.

There are three other Houndsley and Catina books: Houndsley and Catina, Houndsley and Catina and the Quiet Time and Houndsley and Catina and the Birthday Surprise. All are well written and beautifully illustrated by Marie-Louise Guy. Emergent readers will be delighted to discover this lovely series of books.

BookNosher Tidbits: Houndsley and Catina was the 2007 winner of the EB White Read Aloud Award for Picture Books.

BookNosher Activities: With summer just around the corner, you and your child can create a summer reading log. Together you can come up with a design and individualize it. Depending on the age of your child, you can use gold stars, stickers, or just colored markers to show their reading progress over the summer. Set goals at the beginning of the summer (such as reading ALL of the Houndsley and Catina books) and help them reach their goals. Your kids will feel proud of themselves as they track their progress.

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