Surefire Read-Aloud Hits: The mo building Block Picture Book Award


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Surefire Read-Aloud Hits: The MO Building Block Picture Book Award

The Missouri Building Block Picture Book Award is sponsored by the Missouri Library Association’s Youth Services Community of Interest.
The purpose of the Missouri Building Block Picture Book Award is:

1. To encourage language development and pre-reading/early literacy skills through reading aloud.

2. To provide parents and caregivers with a selection of quality picture books to read aloud to young children.

3. To introduce children to a variety of authors and illustrators of children’s books,

4. To encourage an appreciation of diverse artistic and literary styles in current children’s literature.

5. To encourage the continuation of publication of quality picture books.

6. To encourage the development of visual perception/discrimination.

7. To introduce children to diverse themes, cultures and topics.

The Missouri Building Block Committee encourages teachers, librarians, parents, and caregivers to read these stories and ask children for their votes. Please spread the word and participate every year! Over 17,000 children voted last year. With your help we hope to increase this number each year.
More information on the Missouri Building Block Award, along with related books and activities to use with each nominee (past and present) can be found at

More ideas are available on Pinterest at

The Missouri Library Association has created a listserv dedicated to the award to which we invite you to subscribe. You can find more info at

If you’re interested in participating in the Building Block committee, either as a member/reader or as a listener, please feel free to contact Michelle Ballard 2015-16 Chair.

How to Vote:

The voting period runs from September 1 until December 31. The award is designed for kindergarteners and younger, but any child who benefits from the Building Block Award may vote for their favorite title from the list. Children must listen to at least 5 of the 10 nominees before voting. If there are just a handful of children voting, the easiest way to vote is to go to our website and submit each individual vote electronically. The electronic component of our website will be available starting September 1. If a whole classroom or grade level votes, send the total number of votes for each book by email, mail, or fax to the Awards Chair. The Awards Chair for 2015 is:

Ron Freeman

Children's Librarian

Kansas City Public Library--Plaza Branch

4801 Main Street

Kansas City, MO 64112

Phone: 816.701.3481

Fax: 816.701.3491
Missouri Building Block Picture Book Award 2015 Nominees

Even more great ideas!

Digger Dog written by William Bee, illustrated by Cecilia Johansson

Scoop and Dump song

Applesauce / Graham Cracker Fossil Snack – “Hide” an edible object in an individual serving of applesauce. Crumble a graham cracker over applesauce. Child “digs through the dirt” to find the object.

Assemble a Creature – Have the children “assemble” a creature from various sized paper bones.

Naked! written by Michael Black, illustrated by Debbie Ridpath Ohi

Cape flannel board

Super hero cape

Act out this rhyme:

After a bath, I try, try, try

To wipe myself 'till I'm dry, dry, dry.

Hands to wipe, and fingers and toes,

And two wet legs and a shiny nose.

Just think how much less time I'd take

If I were a dog, and could shake, shake, shake!

Substitute “Hat, Shirt, Pants and Shoes” in the song “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes.”
This Book Just Ate My Dog by Richard Byrne

Are You Hungry? Song & other songs

Dog Craft You could modify this and simply make an accordion fold instead of the fancy cuts.

9-1-1 Song

& other 9-1-1 activities
Row, Row, Row Your Boat by Jane Cabrera

Boat craft

Instead of using staples, I recommend tape. For a fun adaptation you could make oars out of cardstock and use paper fasteners to attach them to the boat. Make the slit in the boat long enough that the oars can move easily.

5 Little Boats flannel board Page also includes other boat activities and stories.

Down by the Barn by Will Hillenbrand

Barn Animals Craft

Farm Animal Bingo

Scarecrow Mask
Oh So Brave Dragon by David Kirk

Fire Breathing Paper cup dragon

Paper cup dragon marionette


Page from author’s website

Buddy and the Bunnies in: Don’t Play With Your Food by Bob Shea

Are You Hungry? Song & other songs

Hopping Bunny Craft

Bunny Pokey & other songs

Cupcake Decorating—find a cupcake coloring page or draw a cupcake. Copy on cardstock.

Let kids decorate with glitter, markers, crayons, and stickers.

Cupcake Finger play (tune of "Five Little Ducks")

Down around the corner at the bakery shop,

Five little cupcakes with sprinkles on top.

Along came (child's name) with a penny one day.

He/she bought a cupcake and took it away.

(Continue until all cupcakes have been bought.)

I’m My Own Dog by David Ezra Stein

Dog Paper bag puppet

This is puppy’s doghouse (fingerplay)

This is puppy’s doghouse, (hands form peak over head)

This is puppy’s bed; (hands out in front, palms up)

This is puppy’s pan of milk, (cup hands together like a bowl)

Where he can be fed. (make licking motion)

This is puppy’s collar(encircle neck with fingers)

His name is on it, too. (nod)

Take a stick and throw it! (throwing motion)

He’ll bring it back to you. (rapidly pat leg with hand)

Create a dog out of shapes: circles, squares, rectangles, triangles.

Glenda Bonin used tangrams

DLTK used just circles

Haring Kids uses rectangles and triangles
Bear Sees Colors by Karma Wilson, illustrated by Jane Chapman

I Spy with Colors

The Colors Song & other songs

Paper Bag Book using colors instead of seasons.

Dog’s Colorful Day by Emma Dodd makes a great flannelboard.

Hooray for Hat! by Brian Won

Little Cat flannel board

Create crowns from paper plates:

Create a hat from a paper plate and a bowl

Act out the rhyme “Old John Muddlecombe”

Old John Muddlecombe lost his cap, (Point to your head)

He couldn't find it anywhere, the poor chap. (Look around, shrug)

He walked down the street, and everybody said,

"Silly John Muddlecombe, you've got it on your head!" (Pat head)

Silly Hat Song

Possible ways to combine books:


Digger Dog

I’m My Own Dog

This book just ate my dog


Digger Dog

Row Your Boat

Down by the Barn



Hooray for Hat!

Hooray for Hat

Row Your Boat

Down by the Barn

Brave Dragon

Bear Sees Colors


This book just ate my dog

Buddy and Bunnies in Don’t Play with Your Food

Bear Sees Colors (colorful foods in nature)


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