Picture Book Party: Chester’s Masterpiece, Argus, My Brother Charlie, and We Are Extremely Very Good Recyclers

Chester's Masterpiece (Chester)Chester’s Masterpiece by Mélanie Watt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a humous look at the writing process. Chester the cat takes over his book from author Melanie Watt. Comments between Chester and Melanie occur in the pictures, writing, and post it notes. The takeover theme is continued on the cover and title page.

When Chester runs into writer’s block, Melanie pushes him to think of what kind of story he wants to tell and what setting he needs. Chester has to try out several endings to his story while Melanie and another character give feedback on his work. This could be a great writing introduction for older students as well.

ArgusArgus by Michelle Knudsen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

When Mrs. Henshaw hands out eggs for a science project, Sally is concerned because hers looks different. When beaks start poking through the shells of incubated eggs, Sally’s comes out green and scaly. The teacher tries to pass off Sally’s hatched creature as a chick that looks different. Sally names him Argus.

Argus grows faster than the other chicks. He doesn’t look the same or eat the same. When the other chicks peck, Argus chews a hole in the ground. When Argus eventually disappears, Sally is at first relieved, but she keeps worrying about him. This story could be a fun introduction to any science unit where children raise an insect or animal.

My Brother CharlieMy Brother Charlie by Holly Robinson Peete
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Callie and her twin brother Charlie have always been together. But even though they have a lot in common, they are not the same. Charlie has autism and Callie explains some hard things about living with Charlie. She then goes on to share some things that are very good about Charlie. This could be a good book to share with a class that has a new autistic child in it. This is an overview, so it does simply autism.

Charlie and Lola: We Are Extremely Very Good Recyclers (Charlie & Lola)Charlie and Lola: We Are Extremely Very Good Recyclers by Lauren Child
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This Charlie and Lola book combines drawings with real pictures in this story. Lola used to collect lots of things until one day at her friend’s house. At first, Lola thinks recycling is some sort of bicycle.

The information is simplistic, but it gives a good idea for a class recycling project where a hundred things need to be gathered to earn a leaf on a tree counter poster. The book is also an example of a simple grassroots movement.

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