Sunday, February 23, 2014

Author of the Month Tomie dePalo

I remember when I met Tomie dePaola at the International Reading Convention in Atlanta.  He was truly one of the coolest people there with his leather jacket and earing.  He  signed my book with his famous Tomie and gave me a big smile.  I was impressed.



I have always enjoyed the illustrations in Mr. dePaola's books.  His web site is filled with answers to many questions about his career, favorite books, and his current life.  He also keeps an updated blog that displays his artwork and current happenings.  He is a prolific writer and illustrator.  Here is a list of his many books.  I also have a Pinterest board filled with ideas. 



I enjoy his books about living with grandparents and the special part they play in our lives.  His book Watch Out for the Chicken Feet in Your Soup is one of the funniest books I have ever read. It is a story about a little boy who takes one of his friends to his Grandmother's house.  The little boy warns his friend about what he considers the strange things his Grandmother does.  His friend is intrigued and finds his Grandmother wonderful.  A great lesson for all of us.

To end, here is a wonderful video of an interview with Tomie dePaola on the value of  reading aloud.  It is a wonderful reminder of the gift we give our children.  Happy Reading!

 ~ Becky

Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Happiest Life: Seven Gifts,Seven Givers & the Secret to Genuine Success by Hugh Hewitt

http://booklookbloggers.com/art/_240_360_Book.1056.cover.jpg
What's the secret to a life of happiness?
In this delightful book brimming with humorous and poignant passages, radio personality Hugh Hewitt provides the answer. The starting place is generosity, he says, and there are seven gifts that are sure to improve the lives of both giver and receiver: encouragement, energy, enthusiasm, good humor, graciousness, gratitude, and patience.
Anyone can give these gifts, but Hewitt shows that some people are particularly well placed to offer them: parents, spouses, family members, friends, teachers, coworkers, and fellow church members.
Channeling his skills as a broadcaster, journalist, lawyer, and teacher, Hewitt weaves stories about these seven gifts and seven givers with inspiring and motivating observations to help readers become generous in the ways that matter most.

 The Happiest Life: Seven Gifts, Seven Givers & the Secret to Genuine Success is written by Hugh Hewitt who is a lawyer, professor, writer and TV host. In the book he shares seven gifts that we can give to others in our lives.  He also talks about our roles as givers and how that relates to the seven gifts.

I found this book an interesting read.  I sometimes feel it is easy to not be happy, and I wanted to hear what Mr. Hewitt had to say on this topic.  As I read through the book I found my self trying to be a better encourager and remembering to be more gracious to others around me as he shared in his book.  It also caused me to think about my role as mother, parent, and friend and to reflect on the kind of person that I want to be in each of those roles.

 I don't think that Mr. Hewitt says anything that is earth shattering, but he has the gift of reminding us in a kind and gentle way about what is truly important in life.  He reminded me that every interaction I have with my kids and my spouse is important and it is worth working to edify them.  Cultivating friendships and relationships are truly the best thing that we do in this life. 

From a home education perspective, I think it would be a excellent book to assign to your high schooler and then ask an essay question, like "Which of the seven gifts do you think you need to cultivate more in your life, and how do you plan to do that?  What people in your life have given you one of the seven gifts and what role did they play?  What role model in your life is a giver of the seven gifts?   That alone makes it worthy of a read.

 Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Marcia Schonberg: Wonderful Ohio books

I was looking at books in my favorite resale shop, and I came across The Ohio Reader by Marcia Schonberg.  Ms. Schonberg has also written B is for Buckeye: An Ohio Alphabet Book, and Cardinal Numbers: An Ohio Counting Book. 

I love using this book to teach Ohio History.  It is a great book with nice pictures and short stories about Ohio.  There is poetry, biographies, timelines, and facts about Ohio.  If you check out all three they would be a great read for kids 6-12 years old.  

I enjoy learning about Ohio, and must admit that finding books about Ohio has become a past time.  Ms. Scholnberg's books are a wonderful way to incorporate Ohio history and facts into your home education curriculum. 



~Becky

Sunday, February 02, 2014

Tangram

I love using Tangrams for math.  They are seven amazing shapes which come together to form many fun shapes.  
I  did a lesson on the tangram for a math class I just completed.   In the process I found some wonderful resources on using tangrams in math. I thought they might be of interest.


Video Links
This link tells a class story using tangrams
 This has several tangram puzzles to watch and solve It is my favorite. 
Web sites:

A site to solve tangram puzzles.  

Solve tangram puzzles.

Tangram puzzles to solve.

Various shapes to fill.
Tangrams patterns to cut out.  

An entire site devoted to tangram puzzles and using them in the teaching.

Tangram shapes.

Lessons, books, web sites, and shapes. 

Games


Books