Exploring education through books, travel, and adventure

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State Park Observation Sheet Freebie!

State Park Observation Sheet Freebie!

State Parks are such amazing educational resources! I have been blown away with the things we have learned during our visits to the many Florida State Parks. We have learned about beaches, sea creatures, mangroves, manatees, Florida History…you name it…we have learned it! Does your […]

Friday Freebie- Reading Log!

Friday Freebie- Reading Log!

It has been a minute since I have shared a freebie!! I am super excited about this one! My good friend Arlene and I were talking about reading logs (I mean, who doesn’t, right?) and she said: “Hey, you should create one”. It just so […]

A Ben Of All Trades- A Stunning Look into the Life of Young Benjamin Franklin

A Ben Of All Trades- A Stunning Look into the Life of Young Benjamin Franklin

We all know about the many accomplishments and contributions of Benjamin Franklin. He was such an important person in the history of the United States. But, what was Ben Franklin like as a child? A Ben Of All Trades- The Most Inventive Boyhood of Benjamin Franklin is a stunning picture book that takes a look at the childhood of Ben Franklin! Let’s take a peek inside!

A Ben Of All Trades

Benjamin Franklin is someone that I have loved learning about throughout all of the many history classes I have taken in my lifetime. Like a lot of Americans, I know so many random facts about his adult life! From The Declaration of Independence to Electricity, to Bifocals…Ben Franklin was a pretty amazing man! He was such an important figure in the history of our country! But, I didn’t know a thing about his childhood.

A Ben Of All Trades- The Most Inventive Boyhood Of Benjamin Franklin gives us a peek at what Ben may have been like as a boy! Ben was a lover of books and the sea. His greatest desire was to be a sailor, but his father was not to hear anything of the kind. He had already lost one son to the sea and wasn’t prepared to lose another. So his father attempted to find the perfect trade for young Benjamin, but none kept Ben’s attention. Many of the jobs were the same…day in and day out…the same tedious thing. He grew bored with each job. He wanted something exciting and diverse! Though none of the jobs was a great fit for young Ben, he did pick up knowledge from each job that he carried with him throughout his long and inventive life!

My Thoughts

I was absolutely blown away with how beautiful this book is! The illustrations are so rich and inviting that you can’t help but want to open the book and dive in! I absolutely love the layout of the pages. They have such an old-timey feel with the appearance of torn edges on many of the pages.

As I mentioned above, I am a sucker for a biographical picture book. There is just something amazing about being immersed in the story of someone from history. A Ben Of All Trades is so beautifully written by Michael J.Rosen. He captures the true spirit of Benjamin Franklin. I can absolutely envision his childhood looking much like it does in the book. I loved the feeling of determination and perseverance that was conveyed throughout the pages of the book. Even though these jobs were a terrible fit for young Ben, he still managed to take pieces from each job and put them to use throughout his life.

I absolutely fell in love with the illustrations by Matt Tavares. They are just so warm and detailed and incredible. They fit so beautifully with the story. I grew up in Maine and spent a lot of time visiting Boston as a child and the illustrations transported me right back to the old streets and buildings! I could so easily envision the old cobblestone streets and the smell of the ocean! Just so wonderfully done!

For More Information

A Ben Of All Trades- The Most Inventive Boyhood of Benjamin Franklin is available for purchase now!

Thank you so much to my friends at Candlewick Press for sending this book my way for review. It was absolutely amazing.

I can’t recommend this book enough for anyone who is interested in American History and Benjamin Franklin. This would make an amazing addition to your US History Homeschool unit or a biography unit on Ben! Absolutely beautifully done!

Music For Tigers- A Captivating Middle-Grade Read

Music For Tigers- A Captivating Middle-Grade Read

There is nothing better than getting so entranced by a book that you are able to finish it in one day. Music For Tigers completely captivated me from the very first pages. It was full of lovely and diverse characters, adventure, mystery, messages of conservation, […]

Our Favorite Energy Bite Recipe- Free Printable!

Our Favorite Energy Bite Recipe- Free Printable!

Do you have a food that is a staple in your house? For us, it is Energy Bites! The kids make these weekly and the whole family loves them! They are super easy and relatively healthy…I mean…they have chocolate chips…but those are mostly healthy, right? […]

The Next President- Presidents Like You Have Never Seen Them!

The Next President- Presidents Like You Have Never Seen Them!

Have you ever stopped to think that right now there could be 10 future Presidents of the United States out there? Are they in school, or playing basketball, or planting a garden? The Next President by Kate Messner takes a peek at a side of the Presidents many of us have never seen before! Who were they before they were President?

The Next President

This was such a fun and interesting book! I had honestly never given much thought to who these presidents were before they were in charge of our country! Did you know that when George Washington became president there were already NINE future presidents alive? We know that 4 of those men were working alongside Washington in the Nations capital…but what about the others? Well, John Quincy Adams was about to open his legal practice in Boston, Andrew Jackson was at a boarding house in Nashville, Martin Van Buren was only 7 and doing chores on his family farm, William Henry Harrison was studying medicine, and 4-year-old Zachary Taylor was living on a farm in Kentucky!

Isn’t that so crazy to think about! It really makes you stop and think! How many of them already had aspirations to become president? How many didn’t ever think that would be the path they would take? So interesting! Author Kate Messner really found an amazingly fun spin on studying the presidents! With so many books available about Presidents and the Presidency, I loved seeing this approach!

In addition to the absolutely awesome and creative writing, the book is absolutely beautifully illustrated. Adam Rex has created such a stunning array of artwork for the book. My kids and I were completely drawn into the pages!

Perfect for Election Season

We are in the midst of an election season and I think this would make a fantastic read aloud to share with your kids or students! It is not your typical look into the presidency and I think the kids in your life will really love how innovative it is!!

From a homeschool perspective, The Next President is packed with info! Not only are we learning about the Presidents, but we are learning about what is going on in the world. At the back of the book is a map of presidential birthplaces which is fascinating to look at! We also really loved the inclusion of the Presidential Requirements! What a perfect addition to any lesson you may be teaching on elections!

For More Information

Huge thank you to my friends at Chronicle Kids for sending this my way for review. It was such a hit with the whole family.

The Next President: The Unexpected Beginnings and Unwritten Future of America’s Presidents is available now.

For more information on author Kate Messner, you can click here. Kate is the author of several of our favorite books, including Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt as well as Over and Under the Pond!

For more information on illustrator Adam Rex, you can click here! Adam is the author of several amazing books including Nothing Rhymes with Orange…a fave of ours!

The Next President is available for purchase now. You can click this link or the picture below!

Beast- An Action-Packed Page Turner

Beast- An Action-Packed Page Turner

If you love getting sucked into an action-packed story, then look no further! Beast: Face-To-Face with the Florida Bigfoot is non-stop action, adventure, and mystery…with a touch of the paranormal thrown in there! Fans of middle-grade adventure books will absolutely love this new release from […]

4 Beautiful Books to Celebrate Earth Day from Sourcebooks Kids!

4 Beautiful Books to Celebrate Earth Day from Sourcebooks Kids!

2020 marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day!! Did you know? I was surprised that it has been around for 50 years! What a wonderful milestone! I want to celebrate this momentous occasion by sharing 4 beautiful books with you from my friends at Sourcebooks! […]

A Must-Have New Book for Your Little Insect Lover!

A Must-Have New Book for Your Little Insect Lover!

Did you know that some Dung Beetles are particular about the poo they eat? Yep…they only enjoy poo from a specific species! I mean, I have a favorite brand of coffee…but…poo? Who knew??? Facts abound in this gorgeous new book called Bugs Everywhere! I can’t wait to tell you about this beauty!

Bugs Everywhere

Bugs Everywhere is a stunningly beautiful new book written by Lily Murray and illustrated by one of my favorites, Britta Teckentrup! If you have a kiddo who is fascinated by bugs then you will want to add this one to your shelves. It is jam-packed with fun facts and information…and the illustrations are absolutely ah-mazing!

In Bugs Everywhere you will learn what a bug is, where they are found, how long they have been around and so much more! You will get a peek at some record-breaking bugs…like who is the strongest and who is the loudest! Spoiler alert…our friend the Dung Beetle is mighty strong!

The little entomologists in your life will absolutely love discovering all of the weird, wacky, and fascinating facts there are to learn about BUGS!

Our Thoughts

As a homeschool mama, this book was a home run. Non-fiction is a huge favorite in our house…especially gorgeous non-fiction like this. Bugs Everywhere is presented in such a kid-friendly manner! The illustrations will absolutely draw your kids in. Britta Teckentrup has such an amazing ability to create artwork that keeps your eyes darting around the page. Speaking of pages…we loved the combination of both vertical and horizontal layouts!

I absolutely loved the inclusion of the diagrams of the body parts! Such great visuals to help kids understand how insects bodies are made up. I was so impressed that there was such a huge variety of different bugs mentioned! Bugs from all over…of all different shapes and sizes. I have to be honest…there were bugs that I have never heard of! Your kids will be fascinated!

I also really loved that the book discussed why bugs are so important. So awesome especially for kids who might be a little scared of bugs. It was also a great touch to add in ways that kids can help! So wonderful! It makes for such a fantastic learning tool!

For More Info

Bugs Everywhere is published by Big Picture Press which is an imprint of Candlewick Press.

For more information about Britta Teckentrup, you can check out her website! To see some of our other favorite books illustrated by Britta Teckentrup you can click here to read my post about my favorite books about BIRDS!

Sending a huge thank you to my friends Candlewick Press for sending this my way for review! It was such a family favorite and I know my other homeschool mama friends will love it as well! Mamas, if you have an insect unit coming up…this is not to be missed!!

To grab a copy of Bugs Everywhere you can click the photo below or follow this link.

Celebrate National Poetry Month with a FREEBIE!

Celebrate National Poetry Month with a FREEBIE!

April is National Poetry Month!! We are so excited to explore LOTS of different types of poetry throughout the month! To kick everything off I have a FREEBIE to share with you! My kiddos are obsessed with Acrostic poems! So, we decided to not only […]


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