Here in Kansas City, much ado is made about snow. Usually, we only get a couple small snowfalls. The news people report to their stations, whether it's a windshield in the parking lot, or the shovel aisle of the hardware store. Everybody gets into the spirit. After a few inches, school comes to a screeching halt. Judging by the crowds, it's so that the children can go sledding. We drive two miles per hour to the sled hill. In our defense, we do not freak out over summer heat waves, or even call them heat waves. They are our way of life.
This is why I'm so interested in places where snow blankets the ground for half the year. Where children bring snowsuits to school and are allowed to actually play in the snow. (For some reason, our children are not allowed on the snow.) Whether snow falls often or rarely, I like how the first snow turns everybody into a kid again. Many of our books this month are about the science, nature, and fun of snow.
They're also about holidays. In La Noche Buena: a Christmas Story, a girl travels from snowy New England to balmy Miami, where she'll spend the holiday with her dad and his side of the family. She is in for a treat, as her cousins, aunts, and uncles spend three days preparing a feast for La Noche Buena, a Cuban celebration of Christmas Eve. It's fun to read about how different religions and cultures celebrate holidays, and December is the perfect time to talk about that.
I hope you like this month's selected books. Remember, students can review them--or other picture books about snow or December holidays--to win books for the classroom. The review worksheets are part of this downloadable flyer: