Tag Archives: books about winter

Check It Out: Guyku


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In honor of World Poetry Day, I wanted to let you know about a charming book of poems called Guyku: A Year of Haiku for Boys .

Read on to see if Guyku is for you!

Guyku: A Year of Haiku for Boys

Guyku is a quick read!

Spring’s arrival has a tendency to disrupt our winter routines of after-school homework and bedtime books. Budlong and Ashman want to get as much fresh air as possible until the sun sets. While they are not at an age to truly appreciate haiku as a poetic form, they can appreciate the digestible length of each of the musings in Guyku. And the sooner they’re done reading, the sooner they can get back outside!

Guyku celebrates playing outside!

Divided into four collections—winter, spring, summer, and fall—this sweet little book of haiku celebrates the simple, unplugged fun kids can have when nature is their playground. Kites, snowballs, baseball cards in bike spokes, and flattened pennies on railroad tracks are just some of the subjects to which Raczka and Reynolds pay tribute.

An example of spring haiku for boys

Guyku connects boys to poetry!

What about that title, you ask? Is it right to imply that only boys will enjoy this type of poetry? Probably not. But if it’s going to help connect a boy to poetry, a genre often considered feminine, I’m okay with it alienating half the population. These are not the crude, sing-songy “beans, beans the magical fruit” kind of poems that are often associated with boys. The haiku range from silly and mischievous to sentimental and contemplative. When we first sat down to sample the pages of Guyku, I didn’t call it poetry because…ahem, (whisper) it doesn’t rhyme. You might want to lead with something like, “Let’s read this boy’s thoughts about playing outside and see if you can relate to them.” Or don’t say anything at all; just leave the book lying around (Jedi Mindtrick #3, my friends).

I also recently discovered the book’s website where you can get teacher resources to help your young readers write their own haiku. There’s even a page about girls who have protested and started a “Galku” movement!

Reading this book will inspire you and your kids to go outside and play. Get to the library and check it out!



Win a Snowy Day hat and book

Book Giving Day 5: A Little Red Reading Hood (Giveaway ends 12/12!)


We’ve made it to Day 5 of “The 12 Days of Book Giving”!  As promised, I’m switching things up a little: today I’ll be giving one of YOU the gift!

Read on for details.  But first, let’s do a Book Giving roundup:

4 Children’s Book Clubs

3 Gift of Nothing’s

2 Homemade Audiobooks

and An Almost Empty Box!

Book Giving Idea #5

day 5 book giving

I taught myself to crochet last year because Budlong wanted to be Harry Potter for Halloween and needed a Gryffindor scarf. Then, I feverishly moved on to making baby hats inspired by children’s books.  I’ve found they make unique baby shower gifts and newborn photo props.  In addition, the book/hat gift package immediately connects a child to a well-loved book.  After all, we are raising readers here, right?

This red pixie hat inspired by Ezra Jack Keats’ book The Snowy Day is quite possibly my favorite. The stretchy hood fits over a child’s head much like a ski mask (and can’t be pulled off easily by those stubborn babes that won’t keep a hat on!)

Snowy Day Hat front view

Silver snowflake buttons hold the flaps in place.

Snowy Day hat profile

And it comes to an impish little point at the top.  How cute is that?

Snowy Day back of hat

But it desperately needs a real live baby boy or girl to wear it!!!

Do you know one???

Click on the link below for a chance to win this hat plus a hard cover copy of The Snowy Day. Make sure to answer the question about which size hat you’d prefer if you won: newborn (seen on doll), 3-6 months, or 6-12 months.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway starts today, December 5, 2016 and ends on the last day of our Book Giving series: December 12, 2016. I will contact the winner by email. For shipping purposes, you must live in the contiguous United States to enter.

I hope you’re having as much fun as I am with this series. We’d be honored to have you join us tomorrow for Day 6. As always, thanks for reading!

Hat based on pattern by Katie Hanken
Featured image based on "Presents" by Andrew Butitta, CC-BY-SA-2.0