From the Beacon: Stories Your Kids Will Enjoy

The weather is getting warmer, the days are getting longer and spring is in full swing.

Here are some of our favorite spring stories to share with your children before school adjourns for the summer:

"Someone Bigger," by Jonathan Emmett: Spring is the perfect season for kite-flying, but Sam is too small to hold his kite. While his father launches the kite, Sam can only watch. Delightful watercolor illustrations show that as the wind blows harder and the kite flies higher, Sam's dad drifts into the sky. The kite picks up a mail carrier, a rhinoceros and everything else in its path. Each new character tells Sam he can't hold the kite because it needs "someone bigger." Children will be able to relate to Sam and will be rooting for him throughout this cheerful rhyming story.

"Chickens to the Rescue," by John Himmelman: Dog ate the homework? Too tired to make dinner? No problem! The chickens in this humorous story continually rescue a family from one catastrophe after another in this tale of poultry power.

Younger children will enjoy the plot's pattern and will eagerly chant the catchy refrain while older children will enjoy spotting the details in the hilarious illustrations. Each day presents a new challenge for the chickens, but what will happen when they oversleep?

"Flora's Surprise," by Debi Gliori: Flora and her rabbit family are hard at work planting a garden. Flora's siblings plant bulbs and seeds, while Flora plants ... a brick.Charming illustrations depict Flora's family enjoying their beautiful new flowers and tasty new vegetables while Flora continues waiting to grow a house. The next spring brings a pleasant surprise as Flora's brick has "grown" into a perfect house for a bird who has built her nest on top of the brick in Flora's flowerpot.

"Planting a Rainbow," by Lois Ehlert: Bold illustrations depict a garden's growth beginning with bulbs in the ground and seeds from a catalog to a "rainbow" in full bloom. The author outlines the gardening process in the simplest terms while taking care to label each plant. It's an enjoyable story, beautiful artwork and a science lesson rolled into one.

"Itsy Bitsy Spider," by Iza Trapani: You probably think you know what happened to the itsy bitsy spider. Guess again. Our adventurous protagonist encounters a variety of obstacles before finally spinning her web. When her work is complete, she settles in for a rest in the sunshine while wearing tiny spider-sized sunglasses, of course. Lovely illustrations are perfect for spring, featuring muted colors to show a misty rain, soft flowers and gentle sunrays.