Hip-Hop Lollipop is one of my favorite Picture books to read not only to my children, but to children in the neighborhoods that I serve while working in Outreach for Richland Library. I love how it focuses on a young black girl dancing through her house. Lollipop is truly enjoying herself while getting ready for bed. She dances with her pets. She and her sister dance together while brushing their teeth. Another reason this story is a favorite, is that it also includes a black family with a father figure in the household. There aren't enough books about a black family that incorporate the father in the household.
Hip-Hop Lollipop includes some rare words like Jubilation and Exultation! According to Caroline Blakemore the author of Baby Read Aloud Basics picture books have 16.3 rare words per 1000, compared to 9.3 rare words per 1000 when adults speak to children. Reading books like Hip Hop Lollipop gives your child the opportunity to hear these rare words, learn what they mean and store them into their vocabulary bank.
My biggest reason for loving this book is the illustrator Brian Pinkney! Brian Pinkney has won both the Caldecott Medal as well as the Coretta Scott King Award for Illustrators. I love his style of art when he illustrates children's literature. I love how he keeps the pictures simple while still bringing life to them and making them vibrant in color as well as realistic. He makes black characters in the story actually look black. Take Lollipop for example, he gives her two afro puffs and beautiful chocolate skin. If you read this book to a young black girl she could possibly feel as though she is reading about herself which is important when encouraging reading. His artwork allows for the characters in the book to come to life and "dance" on the page while you're reading.
If you would like to learn more about Baby Read Aloud Basics or even check out Hip-Hop Lollipop check out the links below.