Friday, December 21, 2007

Read Aloud #72: The Complete Poems of Winnie-the-Pooh

The Complete Poems of Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne
Illustrated by Ernest H. Shepard

Pages: 211
Finished: Dec. 21, 2007
Reason for Reading: Every school day we read one new poem and then re-read a few of our favourites. We've been reading from this book for several months.
First Published: 1924
Genre: children, poetry
Rating: 5/5

Comments: This is a compilation of two books "When We Were Very Young" and "Now We Are Six". In this edition the original illustrations have been hand painted in gentle watercolours. These poems are a delight, a joy. They are very much written from a small child's point of view. The poems have rhythm and are very fun to read and easy for a child to remember after hearing repeatedly. Overall, the poems are happy, playful, funny and sometimes slightly cheeky. We have had a lot of fun reading these and I think it is time spent together that we will always remember. Highly recommended to read aloud.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Read Aloud #71: Little Pear

Little Pear: The Story of a Little Chinese Boy by Eleanor Frances Lattimore
First of the Little Pear books

Pages: 138
Finished: Dec. 18, 2007
Reason for Reading: this is one of my favourite books
First Published: 1931
Genre: children fiction
Rating: 5/5

First Sentence:

There was once a Chinese boy called Little Pear.

Comments: The simple, heartwarming, funny misadventures of a five-year-old Chinese boy in his village in China. There are no words to convey just how much I love this book. I remember reading all the Little Pear books and many other books by Eleanor Frances Lattimore when I was a child. I have very fond memories of reading them and taking them out over and over again, especially Little Pear and Peachblossom.

I read this to my older son when he was little and it was a favourite with him so, of course, I knew I would read it aloud to the 7yo. I think I love this book even more now than I did before. The 7yo was simply enthralled with it. He has decided that Dad is going to read it to him next for his bedtime story.

Little Pear is a mischievous, often naughty, boy who is always behaving in ways which are quite shocking to a 7yo of today. What young child of today can imagine what it would be like to walk to the nearest city all by yourself and not get back till after dark?

The writing is very descriptive. There are many scenes, pages long, that describe the Chinese village, the market, Chinese homes, etc. and the language is utterly engaging. The reader can tell that Lattimore loves and respects both China and the Chinese people. (She was born and raised in Shanghai). Lattimore also illustrated the book herself and the simple line drawings enhance the playful mood of the book. I have nothing but praise for this book and highly recommend it.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

When Agnes Caws Lapbook

The next lapbook we did was When Agnes Caws by Candace Fleming using the unit at Homeschool Share. Ds is having a blast lapbooking and learning so much. This story was a lot of fun.


This shows the Decade Book. DS7 loved this so much. He thinks its so cool that for years 9 and 10 there was no him!

Opened up



Completely opened up



Monday, December 10, 2007

Frog Went a Courtin' Lapbook

This is the lapbook my son made when we did the unit study for Frog Went A Courtin' at Homeschool Share.

While we were studying this we also got the CD Songs for Singing Children by John Langstaff from the library which has this song on it. It is a wonderful CD!

The Cover


Cover opened up



Completely opened up



The back

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Read Aloud #64: Do-it-yourself Magic

Do-it-yourself Magic by Ruth Chew

Pages: 127
Finished: Dec. 8, 2007
Reason for Reading: just picked it up on a whim for something fast and fun
First Published: 1987
Rating: 3/5

First Sentence:

"Wow! Rachel, look at that!" Scott Walker grabbed his sister's arm and dragged her over to the shop window of the big discount store on Church Avenue.

Comments: Rachel and Scott buy a "Build-Anything Kit" and soon discover it has magical properties. Adventure soon follows as they shrink themselves, drive a car they've made and then find themselves inside the castle they built and it's even populated with medieval people. Rachel and Scott learn about a minstrel's life and Rachel soon finds out life wasn't very fair for a girl in the middle ages. This is a cute story, a quick read and would be perfect for a child ready to read chapter books.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Read Aloud #63. Poppy and Rye

Poppy and Rye by Avi
Illustrated by Brian Floca
Second in the Tales of Dimwood Forest

Pages: 182
Finished: Dec. 5, 2007
Reason for Reading: next in the series.
First Published: 1998
Genre: children, animal fantasy
Rating: 3/5

First Sentence:

"Clover! Clover, love. You need to wake up! Something awful is happening."

Comments: Poppy decides to try and find Ragweed's parents to tell them the news and Ereth accompanies her. Once they arrive they find that beavers have built a dam and flooded Ragweed's family out of their home. More than anything this is a love story. Poppy meets her husband-to-be, Ereth also feels love for the first time and we see the love of parents for children. I'm not too surprised that my 7yo did not enjoy this book very much. He enjoyed the occasional chapters focused on Poppy and Ereth but the rest of the book did not hold his interest and he requested I stop reading it three-quarters of the way through. I did finish reading the book myself and feel this is the weakest book we've read in the series so far. The beaver characters as the new enemy were more annoying than anything, certainly nothing like the evil Mr. Ocax of the first book. There were some good parts and I moderately enjoyed this volume.