Why Use Children’s Literature for ESL Students?



Breakfast for a Prince uses good pictures and universal language for ESL Students

Good pictures are as close to universal language as the world is likely to get…picture books are an invaluable aid to communication across linguistic lines.

Here are the top reasons why Children’s books help ESL learn English:

• Engagement that’s not intimidating

• Children’s books have universal themes

• Simple language

• Manageable story length

• Illustrations make it fun and engaging

• Increase vocabulary in context

• Helps with skills and strategy development

• Integration of language skills: reading, listening, and speaking

• Creates heightened interest in books and reading

• Cultural knowledge (Western and other cultures)

• Multicultural stories – students see themselves, adds to connecting with story

• Exposure to literary terms and appreciation of literature

•Figurative language and cultural metaphors

• Visual art appreciation

• It’s FUN !





Reading is Going to the Dogs!

Reading is Going to the Dogs!


Early readers need encouragement and what’s more reassuring than a wagging tail, sweet puppy dog eyes, and a rapt audience that will never utter a discouraging word?

Having kids read to man’s best friend gives them an outlet for their newfound phonics, and the pooches — with their need for attention — Dogs and kids lap it up.

Give your children 15-minute stints to read to a dog. Your child has pet allergies? No problem, this method also works with stuff pets too!

Look for every possible way to motivate kids to love to read. For both kids and their pets, this approch will make the dog happy and the kids smile!

Source: Leader-Telegram
Image: Zuzu from Prince Garrett’s book series


5 Star Review – Breakfast for a Prince

Breakfast for a Prince is a wonderfully written and beautifully illustrated picture book and it’s just in time for Christmas!   Prince Garrett and is dog Zeus find themselves in a breakfast dilemma. Can Chef make a breakfast that’s fit for a prince?  Buy now to find out. Click Here!
My daughter and I enjoyed sharing this book very much. The illustrations are superb and the story is a fun read. I highly recommend this book for all families. We are already looking forward to the rest of Prince Garrett’s adventures!!
Prince Garrett dreams of pancakes and his chef makes them for him each morning. The illustrations are kid friendly and adorable.
This is such a cute book. Very nice to see diversity in children’s book. Both having the main character be a Prince instead of a princess and a child of color. beautifully done. I’m getting copies for my 5 Godchildren.
Ruby Wilson
Jannie Pilgrim captures, with childlike imagination, a child’s amazing and purposeful adventure–with lessons adults can appreciate! Looking forward to sharing with my three children the entire Prince Garrett Series!!!

Click Here to read more reviews on Amazon.

You Think He’s Spooky?

Jannie with frankenstein bitstrip

Halloween can be a fun time for the little ones.  I wanted to do something fun for the kids and share some information about my upcoming children’s book, The Beautiful Book of Possibilities.  To accomplish both, I created a video in tribute to Mr. Bullfrog, one of the characters in the Prince Garrett series of books.

Mr. Bullfrog is king of a pond in Milford Forrest, and he can be misunderstood.  My video, “Bullfrog’s Anthem” show’s Jeremiah (Mr. Bullfrog) in a new light.   Through a loved nursery rhyme, Mr. Bullfrog raps about the importance of school.  Don’t let his green skin and spooky voice fool you;  Jeremiah is a fun amphibian! Click here to check him out.


Halloween Children’s Book reviews

Halloween Children’s Book reviews

Halloween Children’s Book reviews

By D. Connolly, 10/10/2013
Candlewick Press
Author Rating: 

5.0 Stars – I Loved It!

In our house, we approach every new event with books, and holidays are no exception. With two children under the age of three, I have found that story books help to explain life’s transitions and traditions more effectively than I can on my own. So when a book carries both a lesson and a little holiday fun, it is a win-win.

Vampire Baby
 by Kelly Bennett is this type of book, and it is my toddler’s current favorite. When she has her afternoon quiet time, this has been the first book she asks for currently.

Vampire Baby is a cute story about a big brother who is convinced his little sister must be a vampire because she bites everything in sight. Overnight, Tootie goes from being the cute baby sister to a biting “vampire baby” when she gets her first teeth. Her older brother doesn’t know what to do and, convinced she is a vampire, he tries to sell her to another vampire family. But, in the end, Tootie’s big brother learns the lesson that a sibling’s love runs a lot deeper than his annoyance at his sister’s new baby teeth, or, more importantly, any other passing phase.

This book is perfect for both the Halloween season and to help teach a simple lesson about sibling relationships. While geared for ages 4-6, my soon-to-be three year old loves this book and I (optimistically) believe that she gets the lesson on some level. I recommend it even if your kids are under 4.

Ghost in the House by Ammi-Joan Paquette is a cute rhyming and counting tale. There is one ghost in the house who hears a noise, then there are two and three. They go through the house collecting and counting more and more – a mummy, a monster and so on.

A clever take on the usual counting books, Ghost in the House has a great rhythm that captivates even younger children. The characters are traditional Halloween monsters, but they are presented in a way that allows them to be more fun than scary. It’s perfect for introducing Halloween to young kids in a safe and fun way.

Finally, Filbert The Good Little Fiend by Hiawyn Oram helps to address the difficult life lesson, particularly in this age of bullying, that it is always okay to simply be yourself. Filbert is a fiend whose parents and teachers expect him to be “bad.” But he just can’t help it – he is a good fiend.

While banished from the classroom to think about his actions, Filbert meets Florinda, an angel, who is also in some trouble of her own because she’s a bad angel. Together, they come up with a plan and ultimately their friends and family learn to accept them just the way they are.

It’s such an important lesson, but a really tough one to get across. This book provides not only a cute story with fabulous illustrations by Jimmy Liao that kids love, but a platform on which to launch discussions with older children about the importance of being true to yourself and accepting of others and their differences.