Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Sh Sh Sh Let the baby Sleep: Famous Brother/Sister Pairs!

In Kathy Stemke’s new picture book, Sh Sh Sh Let the Baby Sleep, we find big brother Zachary a little jealous of his new baby sister.  Layla’s needs come first now. When given the job of keeping her asleep, he encounters all kinds of trouble. Zachary has a secret weapon! When he wears his thick black glasses, he has super powers! He rescues her from birds, bears, and all kinds of dangers. In the end, he makes a heartwarming discovery.  This action packed book with clever rhymes focuses on teaching consonant blends. The teacher supplement includes comprehension questions, songs, worksheets and activities.
The illustrator, Jack Foster, does a fantastic job depicting the action and humor of this heartwarming story. 
Zachary and Layla are sure to go down in history as a famous pair of siblings.  That got me thinking of other famous sibling pairs…….
Here are some that I’ve already got floating around my head:
·         Hansel and Gretel team up to find a witch.

·         Raggedy Ann and Andy dress in primary colors.

·         Marsha and Greg Brady from the Brady Bunch put their heads together to solve family problems.

·         The Bobbsey Twins solve mysteries together.

·         Donny and Marie Osmond sing great duets.

·         Jack and Jill fetch water and fall together.

·         Michael and Janet Jackson sing and dance together and apart.

·         Dick and Jane see Spot together.

·         Apollo and Artemis rule in Greek mythology together.

·         And finally, Zachary and Layla learn what????
Can you suggest famous literary/historical/mythological/cinematic brother/sister pairs? 

Kathy Stemke's websites:
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Monday, August 22, 2011

Prepare Your Older Children for a New Baby!

Sh Sh Sh Let the Baby Sleep is an ideal baby shower gift to help children adjust to a new baby in the home. This action packed picture book with fantastic illustrations will hold the attention of the youngest child while challanging the older sibling. The teacher supplement in the back includes, poems, songs, comprehension questions, activities and worksheets.
Having a baby is life-altering for you and everyone around you including your other children.  The key to a smooth transition is to have a plan for both preparing and training older siblings. Brainstorm before the child is born to come up with ways of coping with the situations that are bound to arise once the baby has arrived.
Prepare your child:
·         Tap into your child's natural curiosity about babies. Look at picture books together and talk about what's going on inside your body right now and what the baby will be like after birth.
·         If they are old enough to understand, tell them the baby is coming near a certain holiday.
·         Take your children with you to some prenatal meetings. Give them jobs to do like squirting the jelly on your belly. 
·         Let them decorate a one piece with fabric paint for the new baby.
·         Have them pick out some things for the baby's room.
·         Ask a friend or relative to give your child some extra time and attention after the baby arrives. This will help him know that he's still special.
Hover: Whenever the children are together, “hover” close by. If you see your child about to get rough, pick up the baby and distract the older sibling with a song, a toy, an activity or a snack. This action protects the baby while helping you avoid a constant string of “Nos,” which may actually encourage the aggressive behavior.
Teach soft touches: Teach the older sibling how to give the baby a back rub. Tell how this kind of touching calms the baby, and praise the older child for a job well done. This lesson teaches the child how to be physical with the baby in a positive way.
Act quickly: Every time you see your child hit, or act roughly with the baby, act quickly. You might firmly announce, “No hitting, time out.” Place the child in a time-out chair with the statement, “You can get up when you can use your hands in the right way.” Allow him to get right up if he wants – as long as he is careful and gentle with the baby. This isn’t punishment, after all. It’s just helping him learn that rough actions aren’t going to be permitted.
Demonstrate: Children learn what they live. Your older child will be watching as you handle the baby and learning from your actions. You are your child’s most important teacher. You are demonstrating in everything you do, and your child will learn most from watching you.
Praise: Whenever you see the older child touching the baby gently, make a positive comment. Make a big fuss about the important “older brother.” Hug and kiss your older child and tell him how proud you are.
Don't panic if your older one doesn't take to the newborn at first sight. Sibling love sometimes takes a while to blossom.  The keys to a smooth transition are to anticipate and empathize. "Everything will go much more smoothly if you can put yourself in another person's shoes.”

Kathy Stemke's websites: Helium Education Articles: Education Articles: Follow me on twitter:
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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Have Fun with Consonant Blends!

Reluctant readers will love this activity to be done with Sh Sh Sh Let the Baby Sleep!
  • Laminate and tape several consonant blends to the floor. The ones featured in the book are Sh, Br, Th, Ch, Gr.
  • Create aword basket at the end that uses the same blend.
  • Start each child with a beanbag or  pair of rolled up socks.
  • With feet together, they jump on each blend and say the sound as they land.
  • Then they throw the beanbag into the basket and read the word.
  • They retrieve the beanbag, give it to the next child in line and sit at the end of the line.
  • When all the groups are finished, they rotate to the next blend.
  • Leave the word off the basket and ask the children to come up with their own word. ex. ship, shot, shy, shape, shut, etc.
  • This activity works great with vowel sounds too!

Friday, August 12, 2011


In order for a new author to succeed, her book must be seen by many people.

If possible, please send out the following announcement to your list of email addresses, groups or newsletters. Please email me with the number of people on your list for my records. This will help me get the word out and sign future contracts with publishers. Thank you in advance for your help.


Author/educator Kathy Stemke, has released her book, Sh Sh Sh Let the Baby Sleep. This action-packed book tackles the age-old problem of sibling rivalry while concentrating on consonant blends. When Zachary puts on his glasses, he becomes a superhero, enabling him to protect his new baby sister from noisy trains, birds and bears. The teacher supplement includes comprehension questions, songs, worksheets and activities.

Please help Kathy get her rating up by buying this book for $9.95 on SEPTEMBER 1st from

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Welcome to my new blog!

With the release of my new book, Sh Sh Sh Let the Baby Sleep, I'm starting this blog which will feature the book and all the news about it.

Here are some pictures from recent library reads I did in Georgia.