Category: Early Literacy Kits

Book Bundles: Calendar

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Backpack ($7.39) — 4Imprint
  • All Year Round by Susan B. Katz ($17.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Today is Monday by Eric Carle ($16.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • A Year With Friends by John Seven ($15.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • H.U.M. All Year Long by Carole Peterson Stephens ($14.99) — Amazon
  • Lakeshore Learning Weather/Seasons ($29.99) — Lakeshore Learning
  • Little Smartie All About Today Board ($50.00) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total: $155.85

I wanted to provide a lot of different options in this kit: days of the week, months of the year, and seasons. The books really accomplish that. All Year Round focuses on the months of the year and shapes; Today is Monday does the days of the week, and A Year With Friends does both the months and the seasons.

The CD that I chose: “H.U.M. All Year Long” is one that I use in storytimes a lot and have noticed that the kids really enjoy dancing to it. I hope that families will enjoy it at home as well!

The Lakeshore Learning Weather/Seasons kit was a great find to help kids sort out the different activities and clothes we use in different seasons. I only included half of the kit in the Bundle, so I have replacement pieces if they are necessary!

The Little Smartie All About Today Board just barely fits inside the backpacks that we use for the Bundles, but it fits! I like that this board is made of wood and covers so many of the topics that I wanted the Bundle to focus on! It also has a clock on it for those that might have enjoyed the Time Bundle and want more practice!


This kit has circed twelve times in the last five months!

Book Bundles: Bedtime

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Backpack ($7.39) — 4Imprint
  • Bedtime by Elizabeth Verdick ($7.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • A Book of Sleep by Il Sung Na ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • The Going to Bed Book by Sandra Boynton ($9.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Dreamland: World Lullabies by Putumayo ($13.98) — Amazon
  • Laurie Berkner Lullabies by Laurie Berkner ($9.99) — Amazon
  • Bedtime Alphabet Flashcards (32 cards) ($5.99) — Amazon
  • Melissa and Doug Sunny Patch Blaze Firefly Flashlight ($7.99) — Amazon
  • Learning Resources: Story Cubes ($12.99) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bags (2) ($3.98)– The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total: $89.79

There are so many wonderful bedtime books out there! Since we have a huge collection of bedtime books (shelved by subject) in the library, I decided to focus on bedtime board books in this Bundle. Board books in our library are shelved in bins and can be difficult to browse for a specific subject. I chose Bedtime because that featured photographs of babies sleeping, A Book of Sleep because it had animals sleeping, and The Going to Bed Book because it’s fun and inventive.

I chose two CDs to add to this Bundle. “Laurie Berkner Lullabies” was because she’s a favorite here at the library. And “Dreamland: World Lullabies” is a great way to incorporate multiple languages, sung by native speakers.

The toys were really fun finds, both chosen to be used by a caregiver/child pair before bed. The alphabet flashcards and flashlight make the dark fun for a child that may be frightened of it. It also promotes literacy and vocabulary! And the Learning Resources: Story Cubes are my nod to traditional storytelling. I love that it also promotes narrative skills and helps stretch this Bundle to be used with older kids as well as younger.


It’s been five months since this Bundle was released to be checked out and it has circulated ten times already!

Parenting Packs: Visiting the Doctor

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • ABC Doctor by Liz Murphy ($15.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Doctor Ted by Andrea Beaty & Pascal Lemaitre ($17.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Froggy Goes to the Doctor by Jonathan London ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • I’m Getting a Checkup by Marilyn Singer ($16.00) — Baker & Taylor
  • Medical Kit by Fisher Price ($16.99) — Amazon
  • Melissa and Doug Doctor Role Play Costume ($29.99) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $122.94

This Pack is the only Pack that just has books for the kids. I couldn’t really find any parenting books on the subject and that makes sense. I provided four books with a variety of storylines: ABC Doctor is an alphabet book about the doctor, Doctor Ted is a book about a bear being a doctor, and both Froggy Goes to the Doctor and I’m Getting a Checkup are traditional books that explain the doctor visit procedures.

The Fisher Price medical kit and Melissa and Doug costume are excellent ways for families to play doctor at home before their visit. Showing the child was some of the equipment they’ll see looks like may help to ease fears.


It’s the end of May and the Visiting the Doctor Parenting Pack has gone out 8 times since launching at the end of November! As a former child who was very scared of the doctor, I hope this Pack has provided some comfort for the kids!

Parenting Packs: Staying in the Hospital

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • Can You Make Me Better? by Ann de Bode & Rien Broere($10.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Do I Have to Go to the Hospital? by Pat Thomas ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Harry Goes to the Hospital by Howard J. Bennett ($14.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • What About Me? by Allan Peterkin ($9.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Your Child In the Hospital by Nancy Keene ($14.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Melissa & Doug Magnetic Human Body Play Set ($12.99) — Amazon
  • Stethoscope ($19.00) — Amazon
  • True Life X-Rays ($29.99) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bags (2) ($5.98) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $144.78

For the kids books: Do I Have to Go to the Hospital? addresses many of the fears a child may feel prior to going to the hospital. Both Can You Make Me Better? and Harry Goes to the Hospital detail different situations — one talks about surgery and the other title is only about being sick. And very important to me was to also include a book for siblings of children who need to stay in the hospital and What About Me? was the answer to that question.

For caregivers: I found one great book to help caregivers prepare for a child’s visit to the hospital. It talks about so many things that I didn’t even think of like getting doctor records, talking with insurance, arranging tours, and obviously helping the child through the experience. It was an excellent addition to this Pack.

Since there are a lot of different reasons a child might need to stay in the hospital, I wanted to include anatomically correct human body models that addresses organs, muscles, bones, etc.. Luckily, there was the fabulous Melissa and Doug magnetic set that does all the different systems in the body.

I wanted to include real medical equipment and that was done very easily with the stethoscope and x-rays. The x-rays were laminated to keep them from getting scratched up and messing the film. The stethoscope is kept in a vinyl bag to protect it while in the Pack.


It’s the end of May and the Staying in the Hospital Parenting Pack has gone out 3 times since launching at the end of November! I’m happy to see that its circulation is low because I hope that very few of my families will need the Pack.

Parenting Packs: Starting School

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • Foxy by Emma Dodd ($14.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Helping Your Child Overcome Separation Anxiety or School Refusal by Eisen, Engler, & Sparrow  ($18.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Maisy Goes to Preschool by Lucy Cousins ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Mom, It’s My First Day of Kindergarten by Hyewon Yum ($16.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Lil Movers School Bus by Fisher Price ($17.99) — Amazon
  • Ready, Set, School! ($32.99) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bag ($2.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $130.88

For the kids books: Foxy addresses school anxiety and that was really important to include. Then, I decided to have one book that focused on starting preschool (Maisy Goes to Preschool) and one book that focused on kindergarten (Mom, It’s My First Day of Kindergarten!).

For the caregiver: Just one book on separation anxiety. I know that is one of the major concerns with parents and I thought that the book Helping Your Child Overcome Separation Anxiety or School Refusal really made a lot of helpful suggestions.

I included the Lil Movers School Bus because of previous attendance at one of our school’s kindergarten registration. Most of the questions from the caregivers are about taking the bus. “Where does the bus stop?” “How long will the driver wait?” “What if I’m not there to meet the bus?” “How many days a week can they take the bus?” “Who do I call if they’re not going to be on the bus?” Since caregivers are nervous about the bus, I know that the kids will pick up on this. Hopefully the Lil Movers School Bus can be used for some dramatic play to help talk out those concerns.

The “Ready, Set, School!” kit comes with lots of material. I included: safety scissors; dry-erase marker; all of the spiral-bound books; and the shoelace tying kit. I removed the consumables, crayons, and stencils to make this useful for the Pack. These items will let kids practice many of the school-ready skills that they will need.


It’s the end of May and the Starting School Parenting Pack has gone out 3 times since launching at the end of November! This doesn’t surprise me and I expect that this Pack will see a lot more use over the summer and into the beginning of the school year.

Parenting Packs: Potty Training for Girls

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • Dinosaur Vs. the Potty by Bob Shea ($15.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • No More Diapers for Ducky! by Bernette Ford & Sam Williams ($9.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Potty by Leslie Patricelli ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • The Potty Training Answer Book by Karen Deerwester ($14.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Potty Training Girls the Easy Way by Caroline Fertleman ($12.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Once Upon a Potty for Her DVD ($14.99) — Amazon
  • Once Upon a Potty Plush Doll Set ($15.00) — Amazon
  • Potty Training Sticker Chart — created in-house
  • Vinyl Bag ($2.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $112.88

For the kids books: Dinosaur Vs. the Potty, No More Diapers for Ducky and Potty. I made sure to include a book about the potty that was very simple (Potty), a book the mentioned leaving behind diapers (No More Diapers for Ducky), and a book that hopefully made potty training a fun experience (Dinosaur Vs. the Potty). All of these books were used in both the Potty Training for Boys and the Potty Training for Girls Packs.

For the caregivers: The Potty Training Answer Book was a recommendation from many of our staff after I left a variety of choices out in staff room. The staff members who were parents enjoyed the Q&A style and the ability to flip through the book at ease to address specific problems. Then I made the decision to have a gender specific book in the Pack, Potty Training Girls the Easy Way, because caregivers might prefer a gender specific title to address specific concerns (ie, if an opposite gender caregiver is primarily responsible for potty training).

The Once Upon a Potty series is very popular here. I decided to purchase the DVD and the doll for each Pack. I like the doll because it is anatomically correct and can be used to talk about the parts of the body while potty training. The DVD includes a song that is pretty catchy and also uses the same style illustrations as the doll.

I created a Potty Training Sticker chart using Publisher and bought stickers to go with it. These are included in the Pack in a white envelope that is sealed with tape and has a note explaining that we do not want to receive the chart or stickers back if used in the kit. So far, most families have taken the chart!


It’s the end of May and Potty Training for Girls Parenting Packs have gone out 5 and 8 times since launching at the end of November! Definitely a worthwhile addition to our early literacy kits!

Parenting Packs: Potty Training for Boys

bookbundlesparentingpacks

For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • Dinosaur Vs. the Potty by Bob Shea ($15.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • No More Diapers for Ducky! by Bernette Ford & Sam Williams ($9.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Potty by Leslie Patricelli ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • The Potty Training Answer Book by Karen Deerwester ($14.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Potty Training Boys the Easy Way by Caroline Fertleman ($12.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Once Upon a Potty for Him DVD ($14.99) — Amazon
  • Once Upon a Potty Plush Doll Set ($15.00) — Amazon
  • Potty Training Sticker Chart — created in-house
  • Vinyl Bag ($2.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $112.88

For the kids books: Dinosaur Vs. the Potty, No More Diapers for Ducky and Potty. I made sure to include a book about the potty that was very simple (Potty), a book the mentioned leaving behind diapers (No More Diapers for Ducky), and a book that hopefully made potty training a fun experience (Dinosaur Vs. the Potty). All of these books were used in both the Potty Training for Boys and the Potty Training for Girls Packs.

For the caregivers: The Potty Training Answer Book was a recommendation from many of our staff after I left a variety of choices out in staff room. The staff members who were parents enjoyed the Q&A style and the ability to flip through the book at ease to address specific problems. Then I made the decision to have a gender specific book in the Pack, Potty Training Boys the Easy Way, because caregivers might prefer a gender specific title to address specific concerns (ie, if an opposite gender caregiver is primarily responsible for potty training).

The Once Upon a Potty series is very popular here. I decided to purchase the DVD and the doll for each Pack. I like the doll because it is anatomically correct and can be used to talk about the parts of the body while potty training. The DVD includes a song that is pretty catchy and also uses the same style illustrations as the doll.

I created a Potty Training Sticker chart using Publisher and bought stickers to go with it. These are included in the Pack in a white envelope that is sealed with tape and has a note explaining that we do not want to receive the chart or stickers back if used in the kit. So far, most families have taken the chart!


It’s the end of May and Potty Training for Boys Parenting Packs have gone out 6 and 8 times since launching at the end of November! Definitely a worthwhile addition to our early literacy kits!

Parenting Packs: New Baby in the House

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • I’m a Big Brother by Joanna Cole ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • I’m a Big Sister by Joanna Cole ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings by Dr. Laura Markham ($15.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • There’s Going to be a Baby by John Burningham ($7.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • We Have a Baby by Cathryn Falwell ($6.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Baby Bear Set (Bear with t-shirts; diapers; bottles — all pieces sold separately) ($28.97) — Amazon
  • Mesh Bag ($3.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $96.82

For the kids books: I’m a Big Brother and I’m a Big Sister, There’s Going to be a Baby, and We Have a Baby. I wanted to provide a range of times that this Pack could be checked out: before baby or right after baby arrives and chose titles that reflected both time periods. I also included suggestions on the Resources Guide for specific titles (big brother welcomes little brother, big brother welcomes little sister, big sister welcomes little sister, big sister welcome little brother, and older sibling welcomes twins) to reflect different situations.

For the caregivers book: I chose Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings because it includes a very helpful chapter on how to handle the transition between single child and multiple children. It also provides a variety of tips on parenting multiple children and is a popular series at our library.

I created the baby bear set by purchasing two sets each of the “I’m a Big Brother” and “I’m a Big Sister” bears. I have two bears in reserve in case one of them needs to be replaced I also purchased baby bottles and LaLaLoopsy magic diapers (yes, seriously) to make this set. Kids can practice on their own animals as caregiver is changing the real baby or as caregiver is preparing the child for the baby to arrive.


It’s the end of May and the New Baby in the House Parenting Packs have gone out 4 times each since launching at the end of November! I’m very happy with my decision to create two of these Packs however because they’ve often been out at the same exact time.

Parenting Packs: Healthy Eating

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • Cool Kids Cook by Kid Chef Eliana & Dianne de las Casas ($14.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Give Peas a Chance by Kate Samela ($14.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Go, Go, Grapes! by April Pulley Sayre ($17.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • The No Cry Picky Eater Solution by Elizabeth Pantley ($17.00) — Baker & Taylor
  • Rah, Rah, Radishes! by April Pulley Sayre ($17.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Learning Resources Healthy Helpings: A MyPlate Game ($19.99) — Learning Resources
  • Learning Resources Pretend & Play Sliceable Fruit and Veggies ($19.99) — Learning Resources
  • Mesh Bag (1) & Vinyl Bag (1) ($6.98) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $148.87

For the kids books: Cool Kids Cook which includes easy and healthy recipes for kids to make with caregivers. I liked that this book was “written” by a Kid Chef and seemed a lot more accessible than some of the character cookbooks in our library. And then Go, Go, Grapes! and Rah, Rah, Radishes! because of their great photos and excellent rhythm — hopefully these books will inspire kids to try a new fruit or vegetable!

And the grown-up books: Give Peas a Chance and The No Cry Picky Eater Solution. Both books address picky eaters (which is a common issue with healthy eating), but Give Peas a Chance addresses other eating concerns like nutrition, how much food is enough, and beyond the toddler to the whole family. It’s also written by a pediatric nutrition specialist. The No Cry Picky Eater Solution is from a trusted line of books and it’s a resource that we have in both areas of the library (adult and parent/teacher collection).

I wanted to include a MyPlate tie-in since the USDA is an excellent source for caregivers to turn to about healthy eating. And rather than including a chart or book, I was thrilled to find a game. Kids can race to fill their plates with healthy choices. This enforces the MyPlate choice options and portion sizes.

Lastly, I wanted to include play food. Since I was focusing on healthy eating, I stuck to Fruits and Veggies. I loved play food as a child and hope that it sparks their interest in new fruits or vegetables. I also included suggestions to keep these in the kitchen so that the family can “prepare” dinner together, even if the child is using pretend food.


It’s the end of May and the Healthy Eating Parenting Pack has gone out 7 times since launching at the end of November! Another popular choice from our collection!

Parenting Packs: First Trip on an Airplane

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For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • Flight 1-2-3 by Maria van Lieshout ($14.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Hello Airplane! by Bill Cotter ($16.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Planes by Byron Barton ($7.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Travel with Children by Lonely Planet ($21.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Doodle Pro Travel by Fisher-Price (2) ($23.98) — Amazon
  • Little People Wheelies ($17.98) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bag ($2.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $125.90

The books for the kids: Flight 1-2-3 was, at the time, the only book that detailed the airport experience as it is now by including security checkpoints. Many of the older titles do not include this step. Hello Airplane! really captured what a child might see when looking out the window. Planes by Byron Barton is a classic and has a lot of really good airport vocabulary.

For caregivers, I chose Travel With Children. This book doesn’t really address being on an airplane, but it does have travel tips for travelling with children. And it also covers both domestic and international travel with a page on each state or country.

I wanted toys that were small enough to be used on an airplane if the caregiver wanted to bring them along. I chose the Doodle Pro travel because it’s a drawing tool that’s self-contained and won’t cause a mess on a plane. And I made sure to include two of them for families with multiple children. I also wanted to include some planes that could be used in dramatic play.


It’s the end of May and the First Trip on an Airplane Parenting Pack has gone out 8 times since launching at the end of November! This is our most popular single Parenting Pack (technically all Potty Training Packs are most popular if you add up their circulations together).