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Our butterfly project

In July, the world is in bloom. Midsummer fields are speckled with wildflowers and abuzz with insects and birds enjoying the sweet nectar. Eager to celebrate this bounty of color and sound, my kids and I ordered a butterfly kit to hatch Painted Lady butterflies. (Our kit came from Insect Lore, which offers other creature […]

Share your summer reading lists

With schools finished for the season, most have posted summer reading lists. Back in my school days, I remember two kinds of lists: the ones with required reading (classics to be read before grade 9) and the much-preferred lists of books we were encouraged to read just for fun. At the Horn Book, we create […]

These boots are made for walking…into mucky water

What kid doesn’t love wading in mucky water and scooping up slimy eggs stuck to cattail reeds and rotting sticks? Oh, it’s just mine? Well, we live in Maine and exploring local ponds is a great excuse to get outside in June — after waiting all winter for the opportunity. The appearance of the gooey […]

Confessions of a (Failed) Battle of the Books Coach

Dear Reader, I have a confession to make: I am a failed Battle of the Books coach. And I am in need of your help. It started out with good intentions, as many things do. In the empty days that follow the end of the school year, when our minds and sleeping schedules were still […]

“Eff inappropriate”

(But you all know he didn’t say “eff.”) This (early) morning Roger was the guest speaker at Coffee and Conversation at the Cambridgeport School Library. The topic was Summer Reading, and most of you know Roger’s feelings on the subject: let ’em read what they want. “Reading has to be a voluntary engagement,” he told […]

Big little world

Roger’s post this morning about cozy mysteries reminded me that I spent my Sunday devouring Liane Moriarty‘s Big Little Lies. I loved the recent HBO miniseries starring Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Shailene Woodley, and the book is just as thoroughly enjoyable. My boyfriend asked me which I liked better, and I replied, “I like […]

2017 Summer Reading Recommendations

“Summer readin’ / had me a blast…” By now you should know that The Horn Book’s philosophy regarding summer reading is just do it, but the it is wide open to interpretation. Summer reading should not be a way to trick kids into doing school. Sure, reading can be learning (and oftentimes it is, even […]

2017 Summer Reading from The Horn Book: Picture Books

Need suggestions for beach reading or books to bring to summer camp? Here are our top ten books for different age ranges — including fiction, nonfiction, and poetry — all published 2016–2017 and ideal for the season. Grade levels are only suggestions; the individual child is the real criterion. For a handy take-along list of […]

2017 Summer Reading from The Horn Book: Easy Readers and Primary Grades

Need suggestions for beach reading or books to bring to summer camp? Here are our top ten books for different age ranges — including fiction, nonfiction, and poetry — all published 2016–2017 and ideal for the season. Grade levels are only suggestions; the individual child is the real criterion. For a handy take-along list of […]

2017 Summer Reading from The Horn Book: Intermediate

Need suggestions for beach reading or books to bring to summer camp? Here are our top ten books for different age ranges — including fiction, nonfiction, and poetry — all published 2016–2017 and ideal for the season. Grade levels are only suggestions; the individual child is the real criterion. For a handy take-along list of […]