It’s Monday and I’m happy to be participating in a weekly event with a community of bloggers who post reviews of books that they have read the previous week. Check out more IMWAYR posts here: Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers.
Sport-O-Rama by Benoit Tardif
This book, originally published in French, is Montreal native Benoit Tardif’s first picture book. This is a playful, colorful guide to 23 different sports. Each double page spread features a different sport, depicting labeled visuals and humorous comments. There are fun puzzles to solve on the “half-time” page and detailed descriptions of the sports and a glossary are included at the back of the book. I can see kids loving to pour over the pages of this book, pointing and talking about the different sports and learning new vocabulary along the way. From badminton to golf to fencing to running a marathon – this book is a perfect for sports fans and, as the author states in his opening, may inspire you “to lace up your running shoes or strap on your skis and have fun!”
Look Where We Live! A First Book of Community Building – Scot Ritchie
This book is perfect for classroom and school use and really does hit home with so many relevant topics connected to community. In this book, we follow five children who take us on a tour of their community, stopping in different places and introducing us to people, places and activities featured in their local community. I love the references to shopping locally, fundraising, the public library, community gardens and neighborhood car washes. At the back of the book is a glossary, activities and ways for children to get involved in their own local community. This would make a great book to launch a unit on community!
A Day in Canada – Per-Henrik Gurth
Wake up and spend the day exploring famous landmarks, festivals and activities across Canada! Explore the hours in the day from coast to coast in this latest book in the popular Canada series by Per-Henrik Gurth. I love this series and this particular book would be a perfect way to launch a unit about Canada. Gurth’s bold, colorful illustrations, reminiscent of Todd Parr, would also inspire some great art projects! Each page includes a clock, so students can learn to tell time across the country.
School Days Around the World – Margriet Ruurs
This is the third in the “Around the World” series by Canadian author Margriet Ruurs. This book focuses on stories of real children around the world going to school – how they get there, what the school looks like, favorite lessons, etc. There is reference to different types of schooling including public, private, international and home schooling. These books are wonderful resources to introduce children to different cultures and countries and also would be good anchors for comparative writing. What do all these real children have in common? They all gather together to learn. A world map at the beginning of the book shows the location of each of the countries, and a glossary contains definitions of the foreign words. Colorful collage illustrations are bright and inviting.
The Red Bicycle: The Extraordinary Story of One Ordinary Bicycle – Jude Isabella
The main character of this unique story is a bicycle. The story traces the journey of this bicycle and the lives it touches from Canada to Africa. (think “The Red Violin”) It begins its life journey with young Leo, who names it “Big Red”. When Leo outgrows his beloved bicycle, he donates it to an organization that sends used bikes to Africa. Big Red is then given to a girl who uses it to transport goods to the market and then is given to a man who uses the bicycle for his medical clinic. Information about donating bicycles is provided at the back of the book. An excellent story to show the power of one person, or one bike, to make a huge different and includes many themes including – pay it forward, re-cycling, donating, making a difference, giving back, cultural diversity. The text is rather long but the story is very engaging. Would make a great companion to “Ordinary Mary’s Extraordinary Deed” (and they have almost the same title!)
Dinosaurs from Head to Tail – Stacey Roderick
When my son was four, he was obsessed with dinosaurs. We would return from every library visit with a bag filled with dinosaur books. I think he knew the names of all the dinosaurs before he knew the names of the days of the week! This book would have been a HUGE hit with him! It’s colorful, vibrant, simple and engaging. The book contains 8 close-ups of different parts of a dinosaur’s body leaving you to guess which one it is. When you turn the page you find the answer, along with fun facts about that particular dinosaur. This is a great addition to a dinosaur collection – for home, for your classroom or library.
The Queen’s Shadow – A Story About How Animals See – Cybele Young
I’m at a loss for words when it comes to this extraordinary book by Canadian writer/illustrator Cybele Young (Ten Birds). It is part nonfiction, part “who-done-it” mystery, part imaginary and a whole lot of WOW! During the Queen’s Ball, attended by animals, a major… crime occurs – the Queen’s shadow is stolen! The Royal Detective, the Mantis Shrimp, begins interrogating all the animals in the hopes of finding the guilty party. Each creature provides the detective with their version of the scene of the crime based on their own unique eyesight. Sidebars provide factual information about how the eyesight of each animal works. As each animal gives their testimony, more clues are revealed. There is SO much to love about this book – you really have to experience it for yourself to appreciate just how amazing it is! Exquisite, detailed, textured illustrations; sophisticated humour, engaging story and layers upon layers of unique story-telling. This is a smorgasbord for your eyes, an extravaganza for the mind and the most unique book I have seen in a long time. WOW!
Thanks you to Kids Can Press for sending me their new spring releases for review! I love promoting Canadian authors, illustrators and publishers and hope that you will too! Thanks for stopping by and please let me know which book(s) caught your eye! Happy reading week, everyone!