Born Yesterday: The Diary of a Young Journalist
Written by: James Solheim
Illustrated By: Simon James
Philomel Books, 2010, Imagination Library Edition
Target Audience: Ages 3-8
Theme: Growing up, Siblings
How We Discovered This Book: My son received this as his monthly Imagination Library book a few years ago. It is a favorite in our house, and is on frequent rotation. For more information on the Imagination Library, you can read my previous post.
Summary: A baby shares his very funny and astute observations of the world.
What I Liked: The voice in this book is very strong, and hilarious. Right on the first page, the baby talks about being born and says,”If I’d known I was going to be born in public, I’d at least have put on a tank top.” You might think that nothing really happens in a baby’s life, but this story manages to have a main arc and sub plots while still remaining simple. This author has chosen his words immensely well.
What Did My Kids Think? This books cracks us up every time. My son thinks the baby’s observations and the book’s illustrations are so funny. And who wouldn’t laugh at a dog named Foofy?
Journaling: Children of all ages can be encouraged to journal. Both of my children have journals, which we take with us on all of our adventures. My daughter just scribbles at her age, but I like the idea that Aidan is modeling how to put thoughts and ideas on paper.
Writing activities: Scholastic has some good suggestions for using this and other diary books to inspire children to write.
Journalism: Talk about what a journalist is, and what they do. Help the child brainstorm about what they would report on if they were a journalist. Have them pick a topic, research it, and then write the story. This can also be a springboard to a multimedia project where they can be a TV journalist, planning and filming their report.