All That Jazz

This month London and I are exploring Jazz music. I can be a bit of a music chameleon, hopping around different genres during different parts of my life. This may just be the time for Jazz! We have had so much fun adding new music into our morning routine. Talking about the different instruments and what sounds they make has definitely livened up our breakfast talk. I hope to explore the American Jazz Museum in Kansas City, but with all the COVID-19 case increases, I’m just not sure it’s the smartest choice for us right now. On the up side, the library is open and we’ve been picking up books through the drive through which is AMAZING! Here’s what we’ve been reading.

Jazz Toddler and Preschool Reading List

Ben’s Trumpet by Rachel Isadora– Grab this sweet book and read about Ben, a young boy living in the twenties and dreaming of being a musician. The illustrations are in black and white art-deco style and give you a since of the time and the movement. This has been London’s favorite so far.

Josephine, The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker by Patricia Hruby Powell– I personally found this book fascinating! It’s a bit longer as well, but the book touches on great topics regarding race, segregation, civil rights, and following your dreams. Josephine Baker is an amazing woman in history

Skit-scat Raggedy Cat by Roxane Orgill– Incredible story. So much history behind Ella Fitzgerald and her childhood. While this one is a bit longer, it was fun for London to relate this story to the music we were listening to. The illustrations are gorgeous and snippets of her lyrics throughout the story.

Squeak! Rumble! Whomp! Whomp! Whomp! A Sonic Adventure by Wynton Marsalis- This book is so fun! A little boy walks through his New Orleans neighborhood and shares the music he hears along the way. Lots of onomatopoeias and catchy rhymes that move you through the book.

This Jazz Man by Karen Ehrhardt-What a cute little book! It’s is a play on the nursery Rhyme “This Old Man”. It has a counting element to it as well as introduces you to different players in a Jazz Band.

Trombone Shorty by Troy Andrews– The author, Troy Andrews shares his own story of how he got his nickname ‘Trombone Shorty’. As a young boy growing up in New Orleans he tells about the importance of music to him, as well as his hometown. It’s well-written and the mixed media illustrations bring the story to life.

What a Wonderful World by Bob Thiele– The bright and colorful illustrations pair perfectly with the lyrics from the song ‘What a Wonderful World’ originally sung by Louis Armstrong in 1967. It’s funny how reading lyrics as a poem or book versus a song makes you think about the message a bit differently. I appreciated the sweet message of hope the lyrics bring. A sweet reminder in these uncertain times.

I hope you guys are able to check out a few of these books! We have kind of just been floating around over here during quarantine. It’s been nice to have a theme to play with and learn about. I especially love that we can incorporate the sense of sound. Having all this extra time at home it’s nice to have some beautiful music in the background while learning and growing with my little.



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