Posted by on Apr 9, 2014 in Easter Activities, Literacy Activities, Picture Book Activities, Spring Crafts and Activities | 0 comments

Like most people, when I think of Spring, new beginnings and rejuvenation comes to mind: trees budding, tulips bursting with colour, bits of green sprouting up amidst a boring brown canvas, plump robins hopping across the yard, enticing mud puddles and wriggling worms… and eggs. I think of eggs.

My bugs and I recently paid a visit to the public library and came home with a bag bulging with picture books for Spring. Below is a list of our favourite books (in no particular order). It wasn’t until I began writing this post that I realized every single book we chose had one commonality: EGGS!!

 

Spring Picture Books: A Dozen Eggs-ellent Picture Book Picks

 

1.  The Odd Egg, by Emily Gravett

My bugs could not get enough of this book! Every time I finished reading it aloud to them, they each wanted to try reading it through by themselves, mainly because they thought the surprise ending was hilarious! My boys enjoyed this book so much, I ended up creating felt board pieces so they could retell this story again and again. The Odd Egg is a story about a duck who finds a unique and mysterious egg. The other birds make fun of Duck’s peculiar looking egg, and shake their heads and mutter behind Duck’s back that it will never hatch. When Duck’s egg finally does hatch, the birds are left to scatter in a feathered frenzy!

The Odd Egg

2. Guess What’s Growing Inside This Egg, by Mia Posada

This fun and  interactive information book is the perfect choice for a classroom read aloud. It starts by showing a picture of the mystery egg, along with a riddle to help you guess which animal it belongs to. On the next page, it reveals the animal along with some interesting facts.  This book is full of  beautiful, water-colour collages that provide visual cues to help you guess which animal is growing inside each egg. The investigative style of this book kept both of my bugs entertained and engaged to the very end!

Guess What is Growing Inside This Egg

 

 3. The Easter Egg, by Jan Brett

Each year, the bunnies set to work creating and decorating elaborate Easter eggs in hopes of being chosen to help the Easter Rabbit deliver eggs on Easter morning. After seeing the other bunnies’ masterpieces, Hoppi begins to feel quite overwhelmed and heads into the woods to think. While he is in the woods he comes across a blue robin’s egg that had tumbled out of its mother’s nest. While the other bunnies continue working on their eggs to impress the Easter Rabbit, Hoppi is busy keeping the robin’s egg safe and warm until it hatches. When the Easter Rabbit returns to collect the enchanting eggs the bunnies created, he notices one is missing, and disappears into the woods to find it. The Easter Rabbit returns with Hoppi and the cracked Robin’s egg, and rewards Hoppi’s selfless act of kindness with the honour of helping him hide the Easter eggs for boys and girls on Easter morning.

My bugs delighted in this whimsical story, and of course in Jan Brett’s intricate and dazzling illustrations. They poured over each and every page, investigating and discovering new details and hidden stories each time we read it!

The Easter Egg

 

4. Hank Finds An Egg, by Rebecca Dudley

This is a unique, wordless picture book about a little bear who finds an egg on the forest floor. Like Hoppi, in Jan Brett’s The Easter Egg, Hank takes care of the little egg until he figures out a way to return it safely to its mother’s nest. The hand-crafted, multi-textured dioramas Dudley creates and photographs for her illustrations bring this story of kindness to life. I really enjoyed how this book sparked my boys’ imaginations and allowed them the opportunity to express the story in their own words, developing their vocabulary and verbal story sequencing.

Hank Finds An Egg

5. When Blue Met Egg, by Lindsay Ward

This is a cute story about the unlikely friendship between a bird named Blue, and an egg… or rather a snowball that Blue mistakes for an egg. Blue wakes up to discover a strange egg, cold and wet, in her nest. She takes Egg on a journey to find its mother, and along the way a special friendship begins to blossom. As the winter months begin to thaw into Spring, Blue discovers that her friend is shrinking. She tries many things to make Egg feel better but nothing seems to help. Then, one fateful morning, Blue wakes up and notices that Egg is missing, When she looks at the ground below her nest, Blue realizes that the only thing left of her friend is a puddle with a lovely pink flower growing in the centre. Blue is left to conclude that her friend has bloomed into a flower! My bugs really enjoyed this book. M appreciated the humour of the story, while B liked the colourful, paper-cut illustrations.

When Blue Met Egg

 

6. Tillie Lays An Egg, by Terry Golson with Photography by Ben Fink

Tillie is not an ordinary hen. She lays her eggs in the most peculiar places, rather than in the nesting boxes like the rest of the chickens, and she prefer to eat juicy worms instead of corn. This is an old favourite of my boys. My bugs really enjoyed the ‘I-SPY’ element of this book, searching within each glossy photograph for the unexpected places Tillie laid her egg. This is a fun, interactive book that can be used to teach the days of the week, and gives children an inside glimpse of life on a farm. What I like about this book is that all of the hens featured belong to the author, and the setting of the story takes place in her large backyard. Terry Golson also has a live HenCam so you can observe the hens throughout the day.

Tillie Lays An Egg

7. An Extraordinary Egg, by Leo Lionni

My kids and I are Lionni fans, so it’s not surprising that this picture book made the cut! This is a comical story about three frogs that mistake a chicken for an alligator. When one of the frogs, Jessica, brings back a large pebble from one of her excursions, her friend Marilyn confidently declares that it is actually a chicken egg. After a few days, the egg cracks open and out crawls a baby alligator! The frogs however, having never seen a chicken or an alligator before, keep calling their new friend ‘chicken’. One day, when Jessica and the chicken are out exploring, they come across a bird that recognizes the little chicken and leads the pair to the chicken’s mother. When Jessica returns home, all of the frogs have a good laugh when she tells them that the mother chicken referred to her baby as, ‘my sweet little alligator’. As I read this book aloud to my bugs, I kept asking them if chicken was really a chicken so they would understand the overall humour of the story. Both of my boys thought this story was hilarious because the frogs never caught on to the fact that their friend was actually an alligator.

An Extraordinary Egg

 

8. First the Egg, by Laura Vaccaro Seeger

This is a stunning, simple picture book about the age old question, which came first: the chicken or the egg? The vibrant, textured illustrations, along with the clever positioned die-cuts, reveal delightful surprises with each flip of the page. My boys enjoyed watching how the cutouts transitioned  effortlessly from one page to the next. The book comes full circle at the end: ‘First the chicken, then the egg!’

First the Egg

 

9. An Egg is Quiet, by Dianna Aston and Syliva Long

An elegant and lovely information book about the many different types of animal eggs. What I love about this book is that although it is an information book, the soft illustrations and overall tone makes it cozy and inviting to read. My boys were fascinated with the numerous shapes and colours of the eggs depicted throughout the book.

An Egg is Quiet

 

10. Rechenka’s Eggs, by Patricia Polacco

This is a delightful story about Babushka, an elderly lady, who lives in the Russian countryside and works all year painting eggs for the Easter festival in Moscow. One day Babushka comes across a wounded goose, Rechenka, and takes her in to nurse her back to health. During her stay, Rechenka accidentally breaks all of the beautiful eggs in Babushka’s basket. The next morning Babushka wakes up to discover that Rechenka laid a gorgeous, decorated egg. Each day forward, Reshenka lays a new, more dazzling egg for Babushka, until all of the broken eggs have been replaced. On the day of the fair, Reshenka leaves Babushka to join a flock of birds in the wild, but upon Babushka’s return the elderly lady finds that her friend has left her an astonishing gift….

My bugs enjoyed the magic and theme of friendship in Polacco’s story. The wonderful and intricate egg designs in the book inspired us to create our own crayon resist Easter eggs. Here are a couple tutorials of easy Psanky ideas for kids if you are interested: Easy Psanky How-To shows you how to use crayons, dye, and an oven to create to create a vibrant Psanky effect,  or you can watch this video on how to make Psanky using traditional tools.

Rechenka's Eggs

11. What’s in that Egg? A Book about Life Cycles, by Becky Baines

This is a great information book from National Geographic Kids. It is full of interesting photographs, and fantastic information about embryonic development is conveyed through simple, well-organized text. My bugs thought the inside look of the baby bird growing inside of the egg was fascinating.

What's in that Egg?

 

12. Henri, Egg Artiste, by Marcus Pfister

This book is out of print, but we had no problem finding ours at the public library, along with all of the other books. Henri is an artist that has grown tired of painting his eggs the same old way. Instead, Henri decides to draw his inspiration from famous artists from the past: Salvador Dali, Andy Warhol, Henri Matisse, Leonardo da Vinci, just to name a few. This book is good for introducing children to some of the world’s greatest masterpieces.

After reading this book, my bugs and I chose to explore the work of Wassily Kandinsky a bit further, creating vibrant concentric circle art that Kandinsky is so well known for.

 

I hope you found some of these picture book reviews helpful 🙂

Click on the links for more Spring inspired activities and Easter ideas!

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