A week full of kids books!

So, so behind here. The good news is that I finally got Gage a reading and writing teacher for 4 hours a week (with the option to do more if it works out), so that means that I not only get 4 hours of my own time, but also the planning time for at least those 4 hours 🙂 The tutor is covered by an Ohio scholarship.

Let’s catch you up with some of our fun books this week.

The Great Kapok Tree

The Great Kapok Tree by Lynne Cherry, 40 pages, published in 2000.

Gage’s review (edited by mom)

The Amazon rain forest is a hot place. The canopy is the sunny place that touches the sky. The understory is the dark place. A man went into the rain forest and hit the giant kapok tree with his axe. He fell asleep and a snake came to him. Then the bee whispered in his ear. “all living things depend on one another.” Then a troupe of monkeys and three birds. According to the frog a ruined rain forest means ruined lives. The jaguar didn’t want him to cut down the trees because then he wouldn’t get his dinner. Humans need trees for air. Several ant-eaters, sloths, and finally a child from the Yanomama tribe came to the man and he woke up.

Does the man cut down the tree?

Vermeer by Nicole K. Orr, 32 pages, published 2017

A snapshot into Vermeer’s life via a fictional boy. There was enough of a story for interest, but also had lots of details too, including information about the paintings that were included in the book. This was a nice introductions for kids and Gage liked it. It led us easily to another book I purchased for this school year…

Start Exploring Masterpieces: A Fact Filled Coloring Book by Mary Martin and Steven Zorn, 120 pages, published 1990.

I love this coloring book and Gage has had fun with it too (you can see one of his ‘masterpieces’ in the next photo. There’s a story for each painting that talk about the painting and the artist and then the other page is for the kids to recreate the picture. Highly recommend when you want to introduce some of the big names in art. I think they could have done a bit better with the selection of artists (many artists had more than one painting) but I still love it. You don’t even have to be a kid to love it 🙂

Anna at the Art Museum by Hazel Hutchins, Gail Herbert, & Lil Crump, published 2018.

You can see that we used the Start Exploring Masterpieces book from yesterday. The Scream was the only one that was included in Anna at the Art Museum. The book was a little young for Gage, but I did like the artwork on each page and how there was info on all of the included art in the back.

Gage’s thoughts…

At first Anna didn’t like the art museum. She got into trouble. She saw herself in the paintings and then she liked the art museum.

(This is very simplistic, but true. Worth a look before a museum visit)

How the Sphinx Got to the Museum by Jessie Hartland, 40 pages, published 2010.

We both loved this book. It told the story of the sphinx from why it got built, all of the people needed to get it built, and then how many and what people were involved to get it into the museum to be viewed by us.

Gage’s thoughts…

This is about all that the Sphinx went through just to get to the museum. My favorite part was that every page added another person who got it to the museum. It was repetitive and fun to read.

Ralph Masiello’s Ancient Egypt Drawing Book, 48 pages, published 2008.

After our visit with the Sphinx we looked through this book that gave step-by-step instructions on how to draw things from ancient Egypt. Gage drew both an anubis and pyramid and had a lot of fun doing it.

Kudos to both of these author/illustrators because they both commented on our Instagram post and thrilled the boy.

Mindful Movements: Ten Exercises for Well-Being by Thich Nhat Hanh, Plum Village, and Wietske Vriezen, 62 pages + DVD, published 2008

We started reading this book at the beginning of the month and it’s everything I hoped it would be. Information about mindfulness, a picture book portion for kids to better explain, the ten movements themselves, and then a bio on Thich Nhat Hanh. We will be doing the movements at the beginning of our school day for the rest of the month. The DVD was fantastic, even having Thich Nhat Hanh himself showing the movements.

Gage’s thoughts…

His friends call Thich Nhat Hanh “Thay”. He’s a Vietnamese Buddhist monk. Thay talked with the US government to stop the Vietnam War. Vietnam wouldn’t let him come home. One way people can develop peace in themselves is by just sitting quietly and breathing. This is called meditation. I’d recommend this to people who like yoga.

Between the Lines: How Ernie Barnes Went From the Football Field to the Art Gallery by Sandra Neil Wallace and Bryan Collier, 48 pages, published 2018

I loved this book so much and so did Gage. We enjoyed finding some YouTube videos of Barnes and his gallery work. I’m a fan of his and want to buy one of his prints. Gage’s thoughts, while incomplete, give you the idea 🙂

Gage’s thoughts…

There was a boy who liked to make art. His mom forced him onto a football team. Twenty-six college teams wanted him. He loved art so he paid his coach money. He became a football painter and got the salary of a football player.

Fly Away Home by Eve Bunting and Ronald Himler, 32 pages, published 1991.

Although dated, especially since it takes place in a 1990s airport, this is still worth a read with your kid. The realities of being homeless will encourage conversation, understanding, and empathy. We spend the better part of an hour on this and surrounding research.

Gage’s thoughts…

It wouldn’t feel good to be homeless. It’s sad. I don’t know what I can do to help the homeless. Maybe we (the country) could give people money or make houses cheaper. I think Andrew and his father will get their own place someday because they both save money.

8 thoughts on “A week full of kids books!

  1. hmsgofita says:

    I love it! Gage has some awesome thoughts on all the wonderful books you’re reading! The Great Kapok Tree is one I read with Gabe a few years ago. Loved it. I hope the tutor works out as well. Hugs and loves. Stay safe!

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