Cleo and Caspar Coloring Activity | Barefoot Books

Have you heard of “book extensions”? During this year’s Summer Reading Program, our Global Program Director Stefanie Paige Grossman explained that “book extensions…are activities based on books that further enhance learning.” From pretend play to Big Kid Book Reports, book extensions reinforce the story’s characters, imagery and themes by prompting children to interact with them in a new way.

Cleo and Caspar Coloring Activity | Barefoot Books

“One of the most common ways to follow
up on a book is with a creative art activity,” Stefanie says. “While working on a book-related art activity, you might notice that
your child narrates her own story or talks about new creative ideas, sparked by the book. She’s making valuable cognitive connections!”

A coloring book is a no-stress art activity that can easily fill that rainy-day recess or antsy pre-dinner hour. With this coloring activity starring Barefoot’s favorite cat Cleo, kids can grab their favorite crayons or colored pencils and bring Cleo’s black-and-white backyard back to life.

Get started coloring Cleo here!

Looking for more adventures with Cleo? Check out these Barefoot favorites:

Cleo and Caspar Coloring Activity | Barefoot Books


Cleo and Caspar

Meet Cleo the Cat’s new housemate Caspar. When Cleo finds out that another animal has joined the household, she isn’t happy, but she soon discovers that new playmates can be fun. The simple, rhyming text is full of action verbs.

Cleo and Caspar Coloring Activity | Barefoot Books


Come here, Cleo!

Follow Cleo as she investigates the world around her. Cleo wakes up and makes her way outside where she climbs, skips and bounces until she is finally called inside for kisses.


Eat Your Vegetables! Using Books to Help Raise Healthy Kids

We know that parents and caregivers pay attention to providing good nutrition for their children. Raising kids with an appreciation for vegetables can can give their health, and their appreciation for the earth, an advantage. Whether you are trying to encourage your children to eat more vegetables in general or have a child who prefers a vegetarian diet, you’ll find many helpful stories and kid-friendly recipes in our collection to help raise healthy and compassionate kids.

Eat your vegetables! Books to Use to Raise Healthy KidsHerb the Vegetarian Dragon

All the dragons in the forest of Nogard like nothing better than raiding Castle Dark and carrying off princesses to eat – all the dragons, that is, except one. Herb is at his happiest tending his vegetable patch, for Herb is a vegetarian. So it is unfortunate that he is the one captured by the castle’s knights in armor. Treacherous Meathook and his dragon cronies will only help Herb if he agrees to eat meat – will he give in to their blackmail. Jules Bass’s lighthearted story combines with Debbie Harter’s jaunty illustrations to make this a hilarious picture book that also offers young readers plenty of food for thought.

Ages 5 to 7 years

Eat Your Vegetables! Using Books to Help Raise Healthy KidsThe Gigantic Turnip

Find out what happens when the old woman, the old man, and all twenty-one animals on the farm try to harvest a rather large root vegetable. This well-loved Russian tale uses humor, counting and repetition to appeal to beginner readers. Book with CD editions include story read by Ellen Verenieks.

Ages 3 to 7 years

Eat Your Vegetables! Using Books to Help Raise Healthy KidsWhat’s This? A Seed’s Story

Learn the basics of how plants grow in this springtime story. When a young girl plants a seed, she learns she must be patient to achieve results. She is rewarded by a beautiful sunflower, and brings her flower to school to share the seeds with her entire class. Includes notes about roots, shoots, flowers and

Ages 3 to 7 years

Eat Your Vegetables! Using Books to Help Raise Healthy KidsKids’ Kitchen

Encourage budding chefs to create tasty meals with 40 laminated recipe cards that feature nutritious vegetarian dishes from around the world. Unique recipes ranging from the familiar to the exotic are divided into five color-coded categories to reflect the major food groups. Simple step-by-step instructions put kids in control as they learn that cooking is more than an art — it’s a science! Includes 8-page booklet with information on nutrition, kitchen safety and terminology.

For all ages

No matter which stories you choose to share, remember: If you’re reaching for lots of vegetables, your kids will likely take them too.

The Enduring Power of Fairytales for Kids

“If you want your kids to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.”

—Albert Einstein

Fairy tales, of course, have been with us for a long time. Sharing them is a tradition often passed down from one generation to another, but did you know the power that these stories can have on children?

Fairy Tales Show Kids How to Handle Problems

We learn from the characters in stories, even as adults. They help us because we connect to our own lives, dreams, anxieties, and consider what we would do in their shoes. Fairy tales help children learn how to navigate life.

Fairy Tales Build Emotional Resiliency

Fairy tales show real life issues in a fantastical scenario where most often the hero triumphs. They allow children to discover in a safe environment that no one in life is immune from challenges.

Fairy Tales Cross Cultural Boundaries

Many cultures share common fairy tales like Cinderella, with their own cultural flavor. We read the versions and know we all share something important, the need to make sense of life with story, and the hope for good to triumph over evil.

Fairy Tales Teach Story

Fairy tales are understanding the basics of story — setting, characters, and plot (rising action, climax, and resolution) as well as the difference between fiction and non-fiction. Once a child understands story, it supports his ability to make predictions and comprehend other stories he’s reading.

Fairy Tales Give Parents Opportunities to Teach Critical Thinking Skills

Perhaps you disagree with a message in a fairy tale. Reading that fairy tale is the perfect opportunity to open the discussion with your kids. Exposure to different ideas and guided conversations help your kids learn to evaluate what they read and think for themselves.

Host a Party with a Purpose!

Fairytales and Cocktails Party is a grown-ups only gathering that promises delightful drinks, stress-free shopping and scintillating conversation!

We’ll talk more about why fairy tales have endured and are still so valuable for children today. Your experienced Ambassador can make personalized suggestions for Barefoot books and gifts that will delight the kids in your guests’ lives. Go ahead and treat yourself and your friends to a fabulous girls’ night out with your Barefoot Books Ambassador.

Do Something Grand for Grandparents: Unique Gift Ideas for KidsTo celebrate Grandparent’s Day on September 13, we asked our community for inspiration and ideas for gifts that kids can create or do for grandparents.

We hope you enjoy this fantastic advice from the Barefoot community!

A Fun Take on Flowers:
Team Leader Tiffany says, “It’s always a nice gesture to receive flowers, but given that children love to craft – how about they craft some flowers using tissue paper, glitter, felt, pipe sticks, etc. This way, the grandparents get to keep them all year long!”

An Actual Family Tree:
Work with your child to craft a tree – an actual family tree! This could be great for older kids who can write names and so forth and stick them on the branches. If you want to go 3-D, use family photos on each brand instead.

Musical Memories:
Put together a playlist with songs from their grandparents school years and have a dance party with them. This gift is one that continues to give as kids can dance to this soundtrack all year long when visiting grandparents.

Lasting Communications:
Consider starting a pen pal relationship between grandparent and child, even if they are close by. Snail mail is fun for all ages. Have children write about what they did that day and ask how grandparents used to spend their day. Ambassador Lisa says, “My kids do it with their great grandmother and both sides love it!”

Send a Hug:
Too far away to see each other? Trace a drawing of your kiddos with arms spread wide onto butcher or rolled paper. Have them decorate with a cute message and mail so that grandparents can have a “hug” whenever needed.

Fun in Video Form:
Kids can create a skit or sing a song for their grandparents and send the video. Or, if you have an early reader, Team Leader Dena suggests having them read a book on video about grandparents and send to share.

What advice do you have for celebrating grandparents?
Please share your ideas in the comments!

Looking for more gift ideas? Meet grandparents of all kinds in these Barefoot stories:

My Granny Went to Market
Fly away with Granny as she takes a magic carpet ride around the world, collecting a steadily increasing number of souvenirs from each exotic location! This rhyming story will take young readers on an adventure to different countries while teaching them to count along the way.

The Journey Home from Grandpa’s
Hop in the yellow car and look out for all the other forms of transportation on the way home from Grandpa’s. A beautiful, double-page spread at the end features all of the colors and modes of transportation from the story.

Give the gift of time together: Include the puzzle for more quality time between child and grandparent!

Grandpa's Garden | Barefoot BooksGrandpa’s Garden
This beautifully told story follows Billy from early spring to late summer as he helps his grandpa on his vegetable patch. They dig the hard ground, sow rows of seeds, and keep them watered and safe from slugs. When harvest time arrives they can pick all the vegetables and fruit they have grown. Children will be drawn in by the poetry of the language and the warm illustrations, while also catching the excitement of watching things grow!

Emily’s Tiger
Watch out – Emily is off and running again! This little girl has a problem with her temper, and every time she gets angry she turns into quite the little tiger. This quirky picture book addresses behavioral issues with humor and an emphasis on intergenerational relationships.

Elephant Dance
Listen along with Ravi to Grandfather’s captivating stories about India, where the sun is like a ferocious tiger and monsoon rains cascade like waterfalls. Notes after the story include facts about India’s animals, food, culture and religion, and a simple elephant dance music score.

In and out. Whisper and shout. Learning opposites is what we’re all about!

About the Book

New release Outdoor Opposites (North America | Europe) is great book for any early learner. With beautiful images and easy-to-read text, this book is a must for your bookshelf.

Grab your backpack and head into the countryside for a camping adventure full of contrasts! Little ones love to try out the opposite actions as they sing and dance along. Enhanced CD includes audio singalong and video animation. Watch as this book comes to life and join the cheerful characters in dancing to opposites with our new YouTube video.

Notables to Notice from Senior Editor, Kate DePalma:

  • Diversity – The featured children in Outdoor Opposites represent different races, genders and abilities.
  • Outdoor Play - From apple picking to camping by a fireside, kids are pictured in active play, enjoying and embracing the outdoors.
  • Seek and Find – Kids will love looking for the adorable fox on every page of this book.

Reviews of Outdoor Opposites:

  • “This book is a welcome departure from standard fare about opposites that only shows opposing words. Instead, this one offers space for conversation on similarities and differences among individual interests.” — School Library Journal
  • “Oldfield’s use of bright and sunny colors complements the multiethnic cast, drawing in the most diverse of readers…An ebullient book with catchy, rhyming text that’s fun to read again and again at home, in the classroom or under a tree.” — Kirkus Reviews

Love the illustrations by Rachel Oldfield? You’ll also love her illustrated work Up, Up, Up! from Barefoot Books. (North AmericaEurope)

Grab both beautiful works for your collection today!