Young Reader in the Making

Young Reader in the Making

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Book 559: Let's Go Rock Collecting

Let's Go Rock Collecting, by Roma Gana, illustrated by Holly Keller, HarperCollins, 1997.

My son used this book for his Second Grade Science class.  The text contains some solid information, and it is accessible to a second-grader; however, this book did not prove to be nearly as helpful as I hoped.  I think the problem is with the illustrations.  The illustrations, even of the rocks, are a bit cartoonish, which made it difficult for my son to match up his rock sample to the correct rock.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Book 558: Cam Jansen, The Mystery of the Stolen Diamonds

Cam Jansen, The Mystery of the Stolen Diamond, by David Adler, Puffin Books, 1980.

My second grade son read this book for his Literature class, and learn to make inferences and deductions using this book.

This book was my son's first introduction to a mystery story.  It wasn't difficult for him to figure out, and he enjoyed it.  But I can't be the only mom who nearly had a heart attack when the baby was brought into the 'den of thieves'.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Book 557: Bad Kitty, Drawn to Trouble

Bad Kitty, Drawn to Trouble, by Nick Bruel, Roaring Brook Press, 2014.

From the very beginning, my eight-year-old son has been a big Bad Kitty fan -- possibly because he calls our Molly Kitten 'Bad Kitty'.

He received this book for Christmas, and he started reading it in January, which was, coincidently, when he was learning the difference between the plot and the theme of a story.  I could NOT have explained the difference better than Uncle Murray.

And, my son has tried his hand at drawing Bad Kitty, and not just like the example.  If Nick Bruel is ever looking for an assistant... ;)


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Book 556: The Josefina Story Quilt

The Josefina Story Quilt, by Eleanor Coerr, illustrated by Bruce Degen, HarperCollins, 1957.

My son read this book for his Literature class in Second Grade.  He was learning about the way of life for pioneers, with an emphasis on story quilts.  This little book fit right in.

The language was simple enough he could read this book on his own and understand it.  The story was rather charming.  Although the book was about pioneers traveling to California, the more timeless theme was about the bond between a child and his or her pet.


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Book 554: 1066 and All That

1066 and All That, by W.C. Sellar and R.J. Yeatman, illustrated by John Reynolds, E.P. Dutton, 1931.

In England, I was dreadful at History.  English History started with the Early Stone Age, and went on from there, so the American Revolution (or Rebellion) was a mere tiff, a trifle.  As an American, it was hard to recast my mind.

Also, this from the book, helps explain my confusion:  "The Scots (originally Irish, but by now the Scotch) were at this time inhabiting Ireland, having driven the Irish (Picts) out of Scotland; with the Picts (originally Scots) were now Irish..."  While this is humorously written, it is also true.

I can't say this book helps me keep my British History straight, but it does make me feel better about being so dreadful at it.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Book 553: Galileo's Daughter

Galileo's Daughter, by Dava Sobel, HarperCollins, 1999.

This book is NOT about Galileo's daughter.  This book is about Galileo, his writings, his beliefs, his trial, and it includes letters written by his daughter to him.  I usually finish a book in a day or two, and this one took me WEEKS to wade through.  In fact, I even set it aside during the holidays because it was a bit heavy for that time of the year.  I am glad I read it; I feel now I can separate more of the myth from the man when hearing or reading about Galileo, but it definitely is not light reading by any definition.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Book 552: Goodbye Mog

Goodbye Mog, by Judith Kerr, HarperCollins, 2003.

Every time my son saw Santa this year, he asked for a Mog Cat.  I may not be the quickest person in the world, but I knew what he was getting for Christmas.  Since he was getting the cat, I wanted him to have some of the books, too.

Our little hamster, Fred, started showing signs of slowing down shortly after Thanksgiving.  By this time he was around three years old, which is remarkably old for a hamster.  I wanted to prepare my son for the inevitable, so I made sure that Goodbye Mog was among the Mog books.

The inevitable happen late on New Year's Eve.  By this time, my son had already read Goodbye Mog a few times.  As we were digging the hole to bury Fred, my son told me Fred was tired and he wanted to go to sleep forever.  So he did.  And that Fred's body was dead on Earth but his spirit alive in heaven.  There were a few tears -- OK, mostly from me -- but my son accepted that Fred had had a good long life and now he was at peace.  So, thank you, Goodbye Mog, for bringing my little boy some comfort.