I take this opportunity of wishing you all a very happy and safe Easter long weekend however you enjoy it.
In this video, I read one of our stories called Easter Delivery which is about Bilby twins Benny and Belinda who are excited to be old enough to make their first Easter delivery on their own. Before they are allowed to go out, they must prove to Mother and Father Bilby that they are capable of following instructions and delivering just the right number of Easter eggs for each family.
The situation for us at Easter this year is very different from any we’ve experienced before and, hopefully, are unlikely to experience again. Wherever you are, I hope you are able to find some joy in the traditional Easter message of hope.
I have uploaded three new resources this week to add to the readilearn Easter collection. As my Easter gift to you, I have made these three new resources available free until the end of April. Many other free resources are also available in the collection. Please enjoy!
Today, it is with great pleasure that I introduce you to Yvonne Mes and her delightful new picture book Little Bilby’s Aussie Easter Egg Hunt.
About Yvonne Mes
Yvonne Mes is a children’s author and illustrator from Brisbane. Her latest picture book is Little Bilby’s Aussie Easter Egg Hunt. Other picture books by Yvonne are Oliver’s Grumbles (Yellow Brick Books) and Meet Sidney Nolan (Penguin Random House).
Yvonne coordinates Brisbane based writers’ group, Write Links, reviews children’s book for KBR (Kids’ Book Review) and runs No Nonsense Critiques. She buys more books than she can read, comes up with more ideas than she can write or illustrate and has more children than she can manage. But she does try very hard, and best of all, she is NEVER bored.
About Little Bilby’s Aussie Easter Egg Hunt
Near bush and scrub and oceanfront, they tiptoe on their Easter hunt . . .
A group of baby bilbies are on an Easter egg hunt. They find all kinds of eggs – a kookaburra’s egg, a turtle’s egg, a cassowary’s egg – before the little bilbies finally find what they’ve been looking for: Easter eggs to share with all their friends.
This colourfully illustrated picture book showcases the diversity of Australia’s egg-laying animals. Each spread reveals an egg in its natural environment and asks the question ‘Whose egg could this be?’. After turning the page, the egg is matched with the animal it belongs to.
Why I like this book
Little Bilby’s Aussie Easter Egg Hunt, gorgeously illustrated by Jody Pratt, is a fun story that is sure to delight young children as they go on an Easter egg hunt with Little Bilby, finding eggs that belong to others before they find the eggs that they can share.
If they are not already drawn in by the sparkles on the front cover, children will love the rhythm and rhyme and join in with the repetitive text as they seek and find eggs belonging to Aussie egg-laying animals, kookaburra, turtle and cassowary.
It’s Easter time again and I wish you and your loved ones a very happy holiday, however you celebrate it.
I’ve been brought down by the flu and haven’t uploaded as many new resources for you as I’d hoped. However, there are many Easter-themed resources already available on readilearn and, now that you can purchase them individually, access is even easier.
Previous posts provide many suggestions to keep the learning in fun Easter lessons and activities, including:
Children love to create artworks using pencils, crayons, paints and anything they can stick to a surface using glue. With access to a variety of materials, they can be absorbed for hours creating their masterpieces.
While they might select from the materials offered, I found the one thing that few children could resist was glitter—and the more of it, the better.
There is nothing like glitter to add a bit of sparkle to the day. The only trouble is, glitter is so light and so small, that it goes everywhere—on the artwork, on the table, on the chair and on the floor. It sticks to the hands and is smeared on the face and takes forever to remove from the hair. But everyone loves it nonetheless, and it adds a little brightness to the day.
Smiles are like glitter in that they also spread easily and brighten the day. However, they are not nearly so messy, cost nothing, and require no cleaning up at all.
I think smiles are the glitter we should add to the artwork that is everyday life. And if there’s one thing about smiles, the more you give, the more you receive. Smiles come from a bottomless well, from a source that never dries up. A sprinkle of smiles will make anyone’s day sparkle, and who knows what difference a smile can make to another’s life.
I often think of The Ripple Effect, written by Tony Ryan, and its inspirational stories. I especially enjoy this quote by Bette Reese included in the book: “If you think you are too small to be effective, you have never been in bed with a mosquito.”
One of Tony’s stories describes the following scenario:
“As you enter the freeway, you discover that the traffic is heavier than usual, and is moving quite slowly. You then notice that the young driver in the car beside you is trying to enter your lane, because her exit is coming up. No-one is letting her in, and she is becoming tense and upset.”
Tony then describes the turning point in her day:
“You stop, and wave her in front of you with a flourish and a smile.”
and the ripple effect:
“she returns your smile, acknowledges your thoughtful action, and drives on
her tension dissipates, and she arrives at her company office feeling buoyed by your little effort
as the main receptionist, she is the first to greet the hundreds of people who enter the office each day
with her positive greeting, she decides to brighten up the life of every person she meets throughout that day
because of her efforts, many others in the business district are inspired to focus on their own positive efforts.”
Like glitter, we can never know how far the effects of our smiles might travel. There can never be too many smiles in any one day, especially in a classroom filled with children.
I’d only come across the word “glisten” before in the Christmas carol, Walking in a Winter Wonderland.
But Charli’s prompt reminded me of an incident in my childhood that had absolutely nothing to do with glitter or glisten (I don’t even remember glitter in my childhood) but loads to do with smiles. I’ve rewritten the incident to include glitter and other alternative facts. I hope it gives you a smile.
Glitter smiles glisten
Relentless rain meant no beach for the country cousins. They spent eternity on the verandah, making artworks, playing games, and bickering.
On the last day, when Mum said to clear space for their mattresses, they fought over who’d do what. Toys and games ended up in a haphazard tower with the glitter bucket balanced on top.
When Dad bent for goodnight kisses, he stumbled and demolished the tower. Glitter went everywhere—including all over Dad. The children gasped.
“Your hair glistens, Dad,” smiled the littlest.
Dad smiled too, then everybody laughed.
Dad wore a hat to work that week.
I previously wrote about this incident for inclusion in a Writing Skills Homework Book published by Pascal Press. Workbooks such as this are very different from the teaching resources I now share on readilearn, but: it was paid work.
This version is closer to the truth.
Strike Me Pink!
Because we lived near the beach, our cousins visited one Easter. Unfortunately, it rained all weekend. Just imagine eight children under ten years old and four adults cooped up in one tiny cottage. Everyone’s patience was wearing thin. We children were starting to whinge and niggle each other. The adults were trying to keep cool and prevent us from hurting each other.
One night when it was all too much, the children were sent to bed early. Four of us were on mattresses on the floor. The line for drying washing, strung across the room overhead, held only one item: my pink dressing gown. I had carelessly tossed it there out of the way.
When Dad came in for a goodnight kiss he thought we looked like a row of toy soldiers in a box. Bending down he exclaimed, “Strike me pink!” And he was! The dressing gown fell from the line and draped over his shoulders like a cloak. What mirth erupted at the sight of my father looking like a pink general. The tensions eased and smiles returned to everyone’s faces.
The next morning was fine as our cousins left for home. We hadn’t been to the beach, but we did have a story to share that would bring a smile to our faces for many years to come.
Note: I don’t know how many others used the term, but my Dad often said, “Strike me pink” to express surprise.
Thank you for reading. I appreciate your feedback. Please share your thoughts.
Carrot cake is great for a celebration, and with Easter just around the corner, I decided to combine the two. I hope you like it.
A carrot cake for Easter
“What will we cook today?” asked Mum.
“Carrot cake!” chimed the twins.
“But you don’t like carrot cake.”
“Carrot cake. Carrot cake.”
“Well, it’s going to be–“
“Easter soon, and we want–“
“to give the Easter Bunny–“
The twins smiled at each other.
“Okay,” smiled Mum. “Carrot cake it is.”
“First, we need the carrots.”
The children raced ahead to the veggie patch.
Their eyes opened wide. The carrot patch was devastated; not one carrot left.
“Carrot cake’s off,” said Mum. “That old rabbit can’t have carrot cake and eat them too.”
Thank you for reading. I appreciate your feedback, please share your thoughts; and if you can help me with the following two questions, that would be wonderful.
How should I punctuate the twins’ dialogue to show that they are finishing each other sentences? Have I done it correctly? If not, how should I have shown it? I checked my style guide and online and couldn’t find an explanation.
Word counted the em dashes I have used to punctuate the interruptions, but I haven’t. Should I have? Most punctuation is not counted as words.
This week I have uploaded two new resources which are just as suitable for Easter holiday fun at home as they are for learning in the classroom.
Whose egg? A logic puzzlecan be used with the whole class to introduce children to the steps involved in completing logic puzzles; or as an independent or buddy activity if children already know how to complete logic puzzles on their own.
Three friends, three eggs, and three baskets. But which friend has which egg and which basket?
Children read the story scenario and the clues, then use the information to deduce which friend bought which egg in which basket.
Great for reading comprehension and creative thinking; and for collaboration in a paired activity!