Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Book Report: Sharing the best in books, apps and literary marketplace news

"Books" photo by Paula Slade

Something old, something new; never borrowed, never blue – today’s “Book Report” looks at classic bedtime stories, a 21st Century app, and exciting news about a new blog from the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art.

Making Art with Children: New Blog from the Carle’s Art Studio

Courtesy The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts not only houses an extensive and ever-changing collection of picture book art, but provides free art studio workshops and classes with their standard museum admission. Taught by Carle staff or professional/visiting artists the art studio is designed “to foster imagination and critical thinking through hands-on work with materials.” 

Now this same professional expertise is being shared online at the Carle’s new blog, Making Art with Children.

Parents and caregivers will enjoy interesting and helpful posts by Museum educators Meghan Burch and Diana Mac Kenzie as well as news about upcoming Museum activities. 

By following this link to one of their recent posts, you’ll find a step-by-step process for recycling used crayon pieces and providing them a new life to be used by little hands. You’ll also be able to download the how-to instructions for this project and sign up for their RSS feed to keep up to date with all of their posts.

For more information about visiting the Museum, call 413-658-1100 or surf into the Museum’s website at    


The Going-To-Bed Book (Board Book) by Sandra Boynton

When it comes to engaging and entertaining children, Sandra Boynton has a gilded touch with her simple, cleverly constructed rhymes, charming animal characters and knack for storytelling.

Originally published in 1982 this classic board book never fails to delight and help with sleepy-time wind downs for babies and preschoolers.

Additional information and reviews are available at, with best pricing for the board book through Amazon Marketplace starting at $2.00.

Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book (Hardcover)

First published in 1962, this timeless tale is guaranteed to make the smallest to the tallest readers sleepy; it’s a true Theodor Geisel classic abounding with his crafty rhyming signature storytelling and quirky character illustrations.

Additional glimpses inside of Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book and customer reviews are available at, with best pricing through Amazon Marketplace starting at $7.09 for this hardcover edition.

Time for Bed (Board Book)

Easy-to read rhyming couplets by Mem Fox, and Jane Dyer’s dreamy delicate watercolor renderings provide the perfect comforting bedtime story about animals being tucked in for the night by their mothers - a true parent-child bedtime bonding.

First published in 1997 this has been a classic favorite for children ages 2-7. has additional glimpses inside Time for Bed along with product details and customer reviews.

Currently, best-researched price available is through Amazon Marketplace beginning at $2.92.


Nighty Night! HD

By Shape Minds and Moving Images GmbH

This is absolutely one of the sweetest and beautifully visual bedtime tales being offered as an app for iPhone and iPad. (Compatible with iPad. Requires iOS 3.2 or later.)

Nighty Night! HD, a Children’s Technology Review Editor’s Choice Award Winner is wonderfully crafted, combining interactivity, animation and professionally narrated storytelling for children aged 1-4 years.

Created by Heidi Wittlinger (2002 Oscar Nominee Best Animated Short) Nighty Night! HD’s 2D illustration and inviting animation prompts children to gently interact with seven different farm animals as they all get ready to go to sleep.

The app also includes melodic lullaby music and an auto play function.

To view additional Nighty Night HD screen shots and read other customer reviews, visit the Nighty Night HD page at iTunes where the app is available for $1.99. The video below will also give you a good glimpse of this very special app.

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