Help kids learn with awesome books
Read together daily to explore the world
Children are curious about practically everything. When a child asks "Why?" it isn't to annoy you (although sometimes the repetitiveness of that question can grate on the nerves). The simple truth is that children want to know and understand their world, and it's our job to answer their questions.
Books can be an awesome tool to help kids learn and grow, and today's reviewed books provide just that. Ask your librarian and bookseller to point you in the direction of other such books. The more children know, the better equipped they will be to understand the world around them; make informed, good choices; and continue to ask "Why?" throughout their life.
After all, no one can dispute the fact that knowledge is a very good thing. You have the power to make that happen. Read together, answer the child's questions and explore life together. That effort on your part will yield greater things than you might imagine.
Books to Borrow
The following book is available at many public libraries.
"Bodies From the Ash: Life and Death in Ancient Pompeii" by James M. Deem, photographs by various photographers and sources, Houghton Mifflin, 49 pages
Read aloud: age 7 — 8 and older
Read yourself: age 8 — 9 and older
When Vesuvius erupted on Aug. 24, 79 A.D., the entire city of Pompeii and many of its citizens were buried alive under the volcanic ash, pumice and large rock fragments. Wiped off the map, it wasn't until hundreds of years later that Pompeii was unearthed by archaeological excavations, and what the archaeologists found shocked the world.
This incredible book is loaded with photographs and up-to-date information, making it outstanding in every way.
Library: Biggs Branch, Butte County Library, 464-A B St., Biggs
Library Director: Linda Mielke
Branch Librarian: Cynthia Pustejovsky
Choices this week: "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?" by Bill Martin Jr.; "How to Catch a Falling Star" by Heidi and Daniel Howarth; "Abe Lincoln Remembers" by Ann Turner
Books to Buy
The following books are available at your favorite bookstores.
"Secrets of the Garden: Food Chains and the Food Web in Our Backyard" by Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld, illustrated by Priscilla Lamont, Alfred A. Knopf, 2012, 38 pages, $16.99 hardcover
Read aloud: age 4 and older
Read yourself: age 7 — 8
Alice and her family plant a garden every year, and Alice thinks of their garden as her summer home. The family plants all kinds of delicious vegetables, then patiently tend to their garden as it grows.
But this year, Alice notices that there are other visitors to their garden that also love the delicious vegetables — caterpillars, grasshoppers, spiders, potato beetles, rabbits and many other creatures. These creatures are part of the food chain, right there in Alice's family garden.
Delightfully told and illustrated, "Secrets of the Garden" will fascinate while educating children (and probably many adults) about what plants need to grow and how all living creatures are connected and depend on plants for life.
"Mouse's First Spring" by Lauren Thompson, illustrated by Buket Erdogan, Little Simon, 2012, 32 pages, $7.99 board book
Read aloud: birth — age 2
Read yourself: age 7
Mouse and Momma are out for a walk on a windy spring day. Suddenly, Mouse sees something glittery and flittery and wonders what it could be. Momma says, "Look! A butterfly!" Then the wind blows and the butterfly flies away.
On and on the scenario continues with Mouse seeing something new and Momma identifying what Mouse is seeing. From a snail to a bird, a frog and then a worm, a flower and then something soft and cuddly and cozy — Momma with her arms wound around Mouse. It's spring, a most wonderful time of the year.
Brimming with opportunities for little ones to learn, "Mouse's First Spring" is pure delight.
Kendal A. Rautzhan writes and lectures about children's literature. She can be reached at her website: greatestbooksforkids.com.