Sunday, September 18, 2011


It seems like fall arrived overnight last week!  Suddenly overnight and early morning temperatures are back in the 40s, and it's time to shift from summer to fall clothing. 

I lived in California for a while a few years ago, and one of the (many) things I missed about living in the Northeast was the change of the seasons.  Sure it was nice to live without ice storms and below freezing temperatures, but it felt very strange to not be able to mark the passage of time in a concrete and visible way.  As much as I dislike the winter, I don't think spring would be nearly as sweet without it.  The joy of seeing the first snowdrops and crocuses pop out of the ground and watching the snow and ice recede as temperatures slowly drift upward, is one of my most-treasured annual experiences.

Now that my daughter is just about to turn two, I'm trying to help her understand and appreciate the change of the seasons.  I'm using two great Barefoot Books to help her with this process - Listen, Listen, and Skip Through the Seasons.

Listen, Listen is one of my very favorite books.  My husband and I have read it to our daughter countless times, and I'm convinced that this is how she learned many of her first words.  It is a beautifully illustrated book, organized by the different seasons, and the text highlights the different sounds of each season - buzzing insects during the summer, crunching leaves in the fall, gliding along snow and ice in the winter, and chirping birds in the spring.

Available in both English and Spanish, Skip Through the Seasons is a great hide and seek book.  Organized by month, there are twelve words for readers to locate that relate to the month - hood and footprints in January, picnic blanket and butterfly in June, and presents and candy cane in December.  The paperback version also includes educational end notes that detail the origins of the names of the months, the days of the week in different languages, and more. 

I highly recommend both of these books for sharing the joy of the changing seasons with young children!!

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