Creativity and respect for its target audience (pre-K to kindergarten) informs everything about Ladybug, a glossy, picture book-style magazine filled with charmingly illustrated short stories and poems, songs (piano music included), and activities (cut-out crafts, spot the differences, find objects, words, and missing letters) geared to young children’s developing interests and their ever-changing and expanding horizons. Among recent offerings: a story set in Botswana about a little girl and her school play, a gopher tortoise’s solution to a den crowded with scaly and furry interlopers, and a look at “Breakfast Around the World,” exploring morning time meals from Spain, Ghana, Vietnam, Norway, France, Egypt, Costa Rica-and New Orleans. “Max and Kate” stories relate the everyday experiences of young children; another regular feature spotlights the adventures of “Ladybug, Muddle, & Thud,” the magazine’s cartoon mascots (a ladybug, and a miniature, ladybug-shelled elephant and dinosaur). I love this little poem from the May/June 2018 issue, by Sara Valafar: “If I hid an elephant/in a gray and crumpled sky/do you think that I could find it/when the clouds went rolling by?”
Lynne Heffley ©2019 Parents’ Choice
A freelance writer and editor for the arts and non-profit organizations, Lynne is a former staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, where she established the paper’s first weekly children’s arts and entertainment beat.