100 Scope Notes
Inside 100 Scope Notes

Ye Olde Scope Notes: These Kids Books Are Too Big!


(Waving a rickety old cane in the air) I’m tired of all these big, fancy children’s books. They’re hard to carry, the pages take too long to turn, and they can’t fit on my bookshelf. In the olden days, we had tiny books and no one complained. Tiny! All books should be small. How small […]

Book Review: Mail Harry to the Moon!


Mail Harry to the Moon! By Robie H. Harris Illustrated by Michael Emberley Little, Brown Young Readers ISBN: 9780316153768 $16.99 Grades PreK-2 In Stores *Recommended* I’m a younger brother, so forgive me if I can’t identify with everything contained in the latest Robie Harris/Michael Emberley team-up “Mail Harry to the Moon”. This ode to a […]

From the Vaults: Where the Wild Things Are … 2K!


If a humorous bit of children’s lit miscellanea is published, but children’s lit blogs aren’t yet around, does it exist? I came across the following (satiric) graphic from “The Onion” in the good ole days of aught aught (that’s 2000 for those who don’t unreasonably stick to an obsolete way of telling the year). The […]

Audio Clip: Lauren Child Talks Clarice Bean on NPR


Most interesting take on what it’s like to write children’s books I’ve heard in a while: writing a kids book is similar to writing haiku. Find out how as “Clarice Bean” author Lauren Child talks about her career on NPR. Click the play button below to hear more. [6 min. 29 sec.]

Overdue Jail


If you work in a library, you know there are various ways to deal with the inevitability of overdue books. Some (although not many I know of) give a free pass, while others charge fines to the offenders. Often, checkout privileges are restricted (as is the case in the school libraries where I work). One […]

Bestsellers: The New York Times has a Time Machine?


Unless the New York Times has a way of visiting the future, I’m not sure how they can claim an article is published on August 24th when it’s only the 22nd. I’m sure there’s an explanation for this. Until I figure that one out, let’s take a look at children’s bestsellers … from the future! […]

Book Review: The Pencil


The Pencil By Allan Ahlberg Illustrated by Bruce Ingman Candlewick Press ISBN: 9780763638948 $16.99 Grades PreK-2 In Stores *Best New Books* Many of the picture books I read are firmly “of the times” – characters, dialog, and illustrations all combine to declare modernity. I envision kids reading these books for a few years and then, […]

Unboxing: New Books Arrive


For some reason, I’m drawn to blogs (like Ars Technica) that go into minute detail in describing the latest gadget (like the Kindle). But they don’t just show pictures – they document every step of the package opening process. They call it unboxing. Well, I receive cool stuff that comes in a box too – […]

Sunday Link Du Jour: Make a Pop-up Book


If there is one truism in this world, it is this: pop up books are cool. If you fancy yourself an aspiring Sabuda-ist, all you need to get started is some construction paper, scissors, glue, and a steady, steady hand. The worlds foremost paper engineer, Robert Sabuda, has some basic patterns up on his site […]

Brainwashed by Children's Lit


Democrat, republican, independent – no matter the party, this is a bit over the top. Earlier in the week I was surprised to find a picture book that explains to children why their moms have tattoos. Somehow that seems tame in comparison to the following books that, with the help of slightly brainwash-y tactics, explain […]

Book Review: Cesar Takes a Break


Cesar Takes a Break By Susan Collins Thoms Illustrated by Rogé Sterling ISBN: 9781402736537 $14.95 Grades K-2 In Stores When I was student teaching, I remember the day we got a new class pet. I led students in voting to name the new goldfish. Everyone had two votes and they picked from a list of […]

Explosion: Children's Book Tattoos


Kabooooooom!! That’s the sound of worlds colliding, friends. It occurs anytime two polar opposites meet, and lately there’s been some meetin’ going on. In the past few months, it seems like tattoos and children’s lit, two formerly disparate things, have been intermingling like crazy. All of a sudden, you look around and they’re everywhere: on […]

Jon Scieszka & Lane Smith Visit Barnes & Noble: The Comic


If you live and work in less populated areas (see: the sticks, see also: like me), you know that encounters with high-profile children’s authors and illustrators are rare. Thankfully they make comic books about these events so no one misses out. fthpbfthpbfthpbfthpb (sound of tape rewinding) Thankfully they make comic books about these events so […]

Nonfiction Monday: Animal Families


Animal Families By Lorrie Mack DK Publishing ISBN: 9780756639983 $12.99 Grades 2-4 In Stores August 18, 2008 *Recommended* Will all high quality, entertaining nonfiction for the lower elementary grades please say “here” – (A few faint “heres” can be heard above the sound of crickets) Ah, well, heh, I guess there’s not exactly scores of […]

Ye Olde Scope Notes: How to Make Books


(Waving a rickety old cane in the air) Back in the good old days our internet had no color, and people made books the old fashioned way: with countless individual steps. Was it easy? Quick? Nay. Don’t believe me? Take a look at the video below to set yourself straight.