Archive for the ‘Caldecott Medal’ Category

Are you still snowed in or trying to survive a rainy day…or maybe need a break until inspiration strikes?  100_9262

I had so much fun today with my grandkids making this  little 8 panel book.  They wanted to read (AGAIN) the book, Dog Loves Drawing, by Louise Yates, which I reviewed last Friday.    After we finished reading it, we made our own little books and illustrated them with colored pencils.  You can make one too, by following the easy directions below.   This is something my daughters learned in elementary school and sometimes made one of these to go along with reports.  You could even  make a bunch of these blank books ahead of time before a trip and draw or write about what you see while traveling.

This is a fun, simple project even for non-crafty types.  Like Dog, we drew a door first and then stick people.  My grandgirls told me what I had to draw and write and then they drew in their own books.      We may never win a Newberry or the Caldecott, but we had fun.  Here’s  pictures of our book (you can see they like Tinker Bell).

The Directions follow our pictures:






Directions for MINI BOOK:


  • 8 1/2 x   11″ sheet of paper (white works best for drawing)
  •  Scissors
  • Colored pencils, crayons, stickers or anything to decorate the book.
  • Optional:  glue stick or 2 sided tape

1.  Fold a sheet of computer paper in half (hamburger fold)

2.  Open paper back up

3.  Now fold in half length-wise (hot dog fold)


4.  Now bring both ends to the middle fold line and crease.  (This is a double thickness you are folding now.)


5.  Open paper back up.  You should have fold lines that divide paper into 8 equal rectangles.


6.   Fold paper back to the original hamburger fold.


7.  This is the important Fold and CUT.  (I like to tell my students this is the SECRET to making the book.)

Put the folded edge facing your belly button.

START at  folded edge-cut on the center fold line(B) to the first fold line (A) and STOP.

Do NOT cut all the way to the edge.   Cut where the red dotted line shows.


Unfold your paper and it will now look like this—with a hole in the middle.


8.  Now fold the paper back into the hot dog fold with the folded edge at the top.

Spread the cut out opening  toward you with your fingers. (Paper is still in the hot dog fold.  The folded edge is on top.)


9.  Push the two opposite ends toward the middle until the inside fold lines   (A & B) touch. This makes the inside panels pop out (see next pic).


You book will now look something like this.


10.  Bring side B toward you to close the book and say ‘Tah-dah!”

Crease the spine to help lay flat. 

11.  Optional:  You can use two sided tape or glue to  close the open edges.

12.   Write & illustrate your book with colored pencils, crayons, or stickers.  (markers not recommended as they will bleed through).  This is fun to use if you are doing a school report.  You can write down facts, draw maps or trivia.


If you have any questions on the directions let me know in the comments.

Blessings on your creativity!

Laura (Grandmamiller)

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A belated Happy New Year and  blessings of creativity  to everyone!  I’ve been under the weather since the first week of January and alas, was not up to the last two PPBF.  But I’ve recovered…so on with my PPBF pick for this week.  (Susanna Leonard Hill is the originator of PPBF and you can find all the other PPB recommendations and links  on her blog.)

Title: My Friend RabbitMy Friend Rabbit by Eric Rohmann
Author: Eric Rohmann
Illustrator: Eric Rohmann
Publisher: Roaring Book Press,  2002
Genre: Picture Book
Audience Age: 2 – 8
Themes/Topics: Friendship, Loyalty
Opening Sentences: “My friend Rabbit means well. But whatever he does, wherever he goes, trouble follows.”
Synopsis: Mouse and his friend Rabbit are playing together with Mouse’s toy airplane when it gets stuck in a tree. Rabbit’s solution of building a pyramid of animals to retrieve the plane brings more trouble.
Why I like it: In less than 100 words a humorous story about friendship and loyalty is presented; many of the pages have no text. The brevity of words draws you into the art, which won Rohman a Caldecott Honor. The supporting characters of elephant, rhino, hippo, reindeer, bear, alligator, duck and illustration from My Friend Rabbit. Copyright Eric Rohmannsquirrel are enormously and comically portrayed in hand colored relief prints as bold as Rabbit’s idea. When reading the book to them, my grandgirls picked up on the mounting problem and had their hands over their mouths and eyes wide open anticipating the next page. They squealed out loud at the climax of the story when a mountain of animals come tumbling down. Instantly they demanded a reread and then after the second time they each wanted to ‘talk the pictures’ (their version of reading the book.) And the 4-yr-old was already quoting the phrase, “Not to worry, Mouse. I have an idea.” The illustrations vary from taking up just the bottom corner to completely filling a two-page vertical spread. Because of the limited text it invites discussion and interpretation of the pictures. You’ll want to closely study the pictures for the subtle advancement of the story.  Rohman himself says, “This book also began with many words and as I made the images I saw that the silliness was best left to the pictures.”   The Rabbit is one lucky character because he has a friend who sees his shortcomings, but is loyal to the end. I would enjoy having this book in my personal library not just for the illustrations, but for the delightful, simple, funny story of a special friendship

Awards: Caldecott Medal, Parent’s Choice, NAPPA Gold Award,
Activities/Resources: Discussion questions are here
A math application using ordinal numbers is here

and there is a TV/internet show based on the book complete with all the characters:  Go here to watch and find the schedule.

Availability: Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Scholastic Books.  (The paperback was just released in 2011.)

Blessings & enjoy the book!!

Laura (Grandmamiller)

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Before you leave be sure to scroll to the comments and tell us  What is Your Earliest Memory  of a Picture Book.   (Karma Wilson, (Bear Snores On) talks about her earliest memory at Picture Book Month.)

Confession:  I never read Winnie the Pooh until I was in college.   Sad, but true. The friend who introduced me to him was aghast.  She said, “I thought you were more well-rounded than that.”  No, that would be my hips that are well-rounded.  Okay, I didn’t really say that-it just took me 40 years to think of a good come-back.

I know my mom and dad read to me.  My mother has a passion for reading which she passed on to me.  But, today I tried to think back to when I was little and my favorite picture book, but nothing stood out. .   I tried to sift through my cob web ridden gray matter…..I could remember


encyclopedias with an accompanying set of Childhood Poems.  I could remember the bookcase in the living room….Then it came to me….Little Golden Books.  Many of them.  I think the local grocery gave one out a week with a minimum purchase.

The Little Red Hen, the  Three Little Kittens, the Three Little Pigs, The Poky Little Puppy.  And I remembered the overstuffed chair with cabbage roses where I used to sit on my mom’s lap while she read to me.

Then the memory gates burst and I also remembered the art of Eloise Wilkin in My Goodnight Book.    I remember holding this book when I was small.  Then when my girls were little, my mother bought them a copy saying to me, ‘you used to have this when you were little.’  And then a generation later I bought my granddaughters a copy.   Eloise’s  beautiful, prolific artwork and her depiction of children has lasted for generations.  (I should be so blessed to have just one book do that.)

I’ve already been inspired this November by PiBoIdMo, and Picture Book Month.  Both posts have some wonderful authors, illustrators and editors giving insight, inspiration and tips–all for free!!!

Picture Book Month is a celebration of  the picture book and its importance and significance in our lives.  So far there have been posts by Caldecott medal winner Chris Raschka, illustrator Tom Lichtenfeld, another Caldecott winner Paul O. Zelinsky,  illustrator John Rocco, author Uma Krishnaswami, and today’s author was Doreen Cronin (one of my favorites).   There is a stellar line-up for the entire month of November.  Don’t miss a day.

PiBoIdMo  is a challenge to  a group of writers and illustrators to come up with a new picture book idea each day in November.  Already we have had inspiring and motivational posts by  new author, Amy Dixon, wonderfully funny author/illustrator Robert Weinstock, award winning author and founder of Picture Book Month,  Dianne de Las Casas, editor Emma Ledbetter, illustrator James Burks, and author/illustrator Deborah Freedman. Author Tammi Sauer talks about structure.

So with many opportunities to appreciate our contemporary talent, learn some techniques, be challenged and encouraged by our peers, you have no excuse not to have fun this month…  Enjoy, reminisce, and READ a picture book.  OH – and just for fun tell me what is your earliest memory of a picture book.

Blessings on your day & your creativity.

Laura (grandmamiller)

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