Nominations for Bill Martin 2014
Activities for each title are linked to the cover. Please scroll over the cover and click. If you would like to contribute activities please send via comments section or join the wiki and add info.

Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messener

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A lyrical, illustrated look at the water cycle, showing how water rises to the clouds and is rained back down again to be used by plants, people, and every living thing.
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Children's Books Of The Year 2012 - Ages 5 To 9
Notable Children's Books 2012 - Younger Readers
Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts - 2012

Lexile 700
From the Publisher:
Over the snow, the world is hushed and white. But under the snow exists a secret kingdom of squirrels and snow hares, bears and bullfrogs, and many other animals that live through the winter safe and warm, awake and busy, under the snow. Discover the wonder and activity that lies beneath winter's snowy landscape in this magical book.

Each Kindness
by Jacqueline Woodson

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Best Books Of 2012
Best Books Of The Year 2012
Charlotte Zolotow Award Winner 2013
Coretta Scott King Book Award Author Honors - 2013

Lexile 640

From the Publisher:

Each kindness makes the world a little better

Chloe and her friends won't play with the new girl, Maya. Maya is different--she wears hand-me-downs and plays with old-fashioned toys. Every time Maya tries to join Chloe and her gang, they reject her. Eventually, Maya plays alone, and then stops coming to school altogether. When Chloe's teacher gives a lesson about how even small acts of kindness can change the world, Chloe is stung by the lost opportunity for friendship, and thinks about how much better it could have been if she'd shown a little kindness toward Maya.

This unforgettable book is written and illustrated by the award-winning team that createdThe Other Sideand the Caldecott Honor winnerComing On Home Soon. With its powerful message and striking art, it will resonate with readers long after they've put it down.

Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore
by Joyce Wiliam

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Lexile 650

From the Publisher: The book that inspired the Academy Award–winning short film, fromNew York Timesbestselling author and beloved visionary William Joyce.

Not a Buzz to be Found
by Linda Glaser
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Lexile 680

From the Publisher: Describes what insects do to survive winter's chill. Looks at how monarch butterflies, woolly bear caterpillars, ladybird beetles, honeybees, mourning cloak butterflies, praying mantises, common pondhawk dragonflies, ants, gallflies, field crickets, bald-faced hornets, and black swallowtail butterflies spend the winter season.

A Leaf Can Be.......
by Laura Salas
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AR Lexile 170

Notes: Includes bibliographical references. In rhyming text and illustrations, explores some of the many things a leaf can be, from tree topper to rain stopper. Includes facts about leaves and a glossary.
From the Publisher: This picture book poetically explores the many things a leaf can befrom shade spiller and mouth filler to tree topper and rain stopper. Backmatter provides additional explanations.

Library Media Connection (October 2012)
This creative book is applicable to a wide variety of lessons, but will also be in demand by readers for sheer enjoyment. It pairs an imaginative rhyming text with captivating and dreamlike illustrations that will be an effective discussion starter for the primary classroom studying leaves and trees. Students will be captivated as they explore the varying contributions leaves make to nature and wildlife through the seasons. The whimsical metaphors and unique vocabulary, which is explained in the final section, make this book a standout choice for older students too. Brook Berg, Library Media Specialist, Riverview Elementary School, Farmington, Minnesota [Editor's Note: Available in e-book format.] RECOMMENDED

by Ari Berk

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AR 4.0Lexile 790

Notes: Chiro, a young bat, is nervous about flying into the world for the first time without his mother, especially on a very dark night, but he soon learns to rely on his "song" to find his way and stay safe.
From the Publisher: A breathtaking picture book illustrated by mega-bestseller Loren Long, about a young bat setting off into the world using only his good sense!
Sense is the song you sing out into the world,
and the song the world sings back to you.
With these words, Chiro’s mother sends him off into the night for the first time alone. It’s an adventure, but how will he find his way? And how will he find his way home? As the young bat discovers, navigating the world around him is easy as long as he uses his good sense.
This beautiful and touching coming-of-age story, with mesmerizing artwork fromNew York Timesbestselling illustrator Loren Long and lyrical text from Ari Berk, conveys a heartwarming and universal message: No matter how far away you go, you can always find your way home.

Being Frank
by Donna W Earnhardt
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AR 3.3
Notes: Frank is proud of his honesty but finds he is upsetting the people around him, and after a visit to Grandpa Ernest, Frank learns the value of both being honest and considering other people's feelings.
From the Publisher:
Frank follows the motto, "Honesty is the best policy." He tells the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Frank never lies to his schoolmates, he always tells the truth to adults, and he's always honest with police officers. The balancing act of finding tact, that fine line between telling the truth and telling too much truth, is the main theme of this story, and it's very funny—although not necessarily to his friend Dotti whose freckles remind Frank of the Big Dipper, or to the teacher who hears that her breath smells like onions, or to the principal who is told that his toupee looks like a weasel. No one is quite as impressed with Frank's honesty as he thinks they should be. He is sweet and straightforward, and, well, very frank, but with everyone annoyed at him, Frank is now honestly unhappy. He decides to visit his confidante and pal, Grandpa Ernest, who has a history of frankness himself. With a few lessons from Grandpa, Frank begins to understand that the truth is important, but so is not being hurtful. With amusing characters and expressive artwork, this story tells the powerful message of finding the good in everything—a lesson that sends compassion and understanding to take the place of rudeness in the complex concept of truth.

Ocean Sunlight: How Tiny Plants Feed the Seas
by Molly Bang and Penny Chisholm
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Book Links Lasting Connections 2012
Booklist Books for the Young - 2012
Kirkus Reviews - Editor's Choice Children's Books - 2012

AR 4.5Lexile 770
Notes: Explains how tiny plants feed the seas.
From the Publisher:

Acclaimed Caldecott artist Molly Bang paints a stunning, sweeping view of our ever-changing oceans.

In this timely book, award-winner Molly Bang uses her signature poetic language and dazzling illustrations to introduce the oceanic world. From tiny aquatic plants to the biggest whale or fish, Bang presents a moving, living picture of the miraculous balance sustaining each life cycle and food chain deep within our wondrous oceans.
On land or in the deep blue sea, we are all connected--and we are all a part of a grand living landscape. Co-authored by award-winning M.I.T. professor Penny Chisholm, a leading expert on ocean science, OCEAN SUNLIGHT is packed with clear, simple science. This informative, joyous book will help children understand and celebrate the astonishing role our oceans play in human life.

Planting the Wild Garden
by Kathryn Galbraith
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Best Science Books - Children 2011
Children's Books Of The Year 2012 - Ages 5 To 9

AR 2.0Lexile 490
Notes: Includes bibliographical references. Looks at how wind and water, birds and animals, plants and people work together unaware to create a wild meadow garden.
From the Publisher: An exploration of the different ways seeds are dispersed into the environment.
Creepy Carrots
by Aaron Reynolds

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ARCaldecott Honor 2013AR 2.3Lexile 410

Notes: The carrots that grow in Crackenhopper Field are the fattest and crispiest around and Jasper Rabbit cannot resist pulling some to eat each time he passes by, until he begins hearing and seeing creepy carrots wherever he goes.
From the Publisher: In this Caldecott Honor–winning picture book, The Twilight Zone comes to the carrot patch as a rabbit fears his favorite treats are out to get him.
Jasper Rabbit loves carrots—especially Crackenhopper Field carrots.
He eats them on the way to school.
He eats them going to Little League.
He eats them walking home.
Until the day the carrots start following him...or are they?
Celebrated artist Peter Brown’s stylish illustrations pair perfectly with Aaron Reynold’s text in this hilarious picture book that shows it’s all fun and games…until you get too greedy.
When a Dragon Moves In
by Jodi Moore
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AR 3.3

Notes: A boy and his imaginary dragon have a wonderful time playing on the beach, braving the waves, roasting marshmallows, and roaming the shore, but when the boy tries to tell his friends about his dragon, no one will believe him.
From the Publisher: Ages 5 to 7 years. On a beautiful day at the beach, a young boy brings his bucket, shovel, and imagination, and builds a perfect sand castle. Right away, a dragon moves in. The boy decides to befriend his dragon and they spend time roaming the shore, flying a kite, braving the waves, defying bullies, and roasting marshmallows -- all while Dad is busy sunbathing and Mom is engrossed in her book. Unfortunately, no one believes the boy when he tries to share the news of this magnificent creature. That's when the mischief begins, and the dragon becomes a force to be reckoned with. While adults will recognise the naughty antics as a ploy for attention, children will dissolve into giggles as the dragon devours every last sandwich, blows bubbles in the lemonade, and leaves claw prints in the brownies. Maybe the dragon really is running amok on the beach, or maybe it's a little boy's imagination that is running wild.

Because Amelia Smiled
by David Ezra Stein
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AR 3.5Lexile 760
Notes: A little girl's smile as she skips down the street in New York inspires a neighbor to send cookies to her grandson in Mexico, and the good will soon spreads around the world.
From the Publisher:Just try not to smile! A positively inspiring picture book from the creator of the Caldecott Honor–winningInterrupting Chicken.

Because Amelia smiles as she skips down the street, her neighbor Mrs. Higgins smiles too, and decides to send a care package of cookies to her grandson Lionel in Mexico. The cookies give Lionel an idea, and his idea inspires a student, who in turn inspires a ballet troupe in England! And so the good feelings that started with Amelia's smile make their way around the world, from a goodwill recital in Israel, to an impromptu rumba concert in Paris, to a long-awaited marriage proposal in Italy, to a knitted scarf for a beloved niece back in New York. Putting a unique spin on "what goes around comes around," David Ezra Stein's charmingly illustrated story reminds us that adding even a small dose of kindness into the world is sure to spur more and more kindness, which could eventually make its way back to you!