Exploring education through books, travel, and adventure

Tag: Book review

Llama Destroys the World is a Laugh-Out-Loud Gem

Llama Destroys the World is a Laugh-Out-Loud Gem

You guys…have I got a hysterical book recommendation for you! What was the last laugh-out-loud hysterical book that you’ve read? I can’t remember the last book that had me cracking up as much as this one did. Llama Destroys the World is a brand new […]

Summer: My New Favorite Book to Teach Kindness

Summer: My New Favorite Book to Teach Kindness

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted”- Aesop   Friends, have I got a wonderful new book for you. Teachers, homeschool families, parents…this is a book you are going to want to read with your kiddos. Summer, is a new release […]

5 Cherries is a Celebration of Imagination

5 Cherries is a Celebration of Imagination

Children have an amazing gift of imagination. Have you ever listened to your children play and been completely amazed at some of the things they think up? 5 Cherries is a celebration of that imagination!  I was immediately drawn to this book because of the gorgeous illustrations on the cover. I soon learned that the book itself was not only filled with lovely artwork but also a beautiful story!

5 Cherries is a book that was originally written in Italian! Author/illustrator Vittoria Facchini has written several books, but this is the first one to be published in the U.S.  I am so glad that it was because I believe it is such a gem. I referred to this book as a “celebration of imagination” and it is just that. This is a book that parents and teachers will want to read to their kids to show them what a powerful tool the imagination is!

5 Cherries is a Celebration of Imagination

5 Cherries is the story of 2 siblings. Their mother gives them each 5 cherries. One child can’t believe he has received so few…5 is not enough! The other child receives her 5 cherries and she can see oh so much more. We are then taken on a journey that shows the power of imagination. Surely there isn’t very much you can do with 5 cherries…right? Oh but there is…especially when imagination is involved! Maybe you will make a bouquet out of your cherries, maybe you can use them as lipstick to make your face look pretty, or perhaps you can balance them on your nose! There is no end to the possibilities if you only use your imagination.

5 cherries book page

5 cherries book page

5 cherries book page

5 cherries book page

 

5 Cherries is such a heartwarming book. Children and parents will absolutely love the illustrations…they are so special and different from any book I have seen! The brightly colored cherries stand out against the crisp white of the pages! I absolutely loved that it shows that there is no limitation to your imagination. My kids loved the book and definitely had a couple of laughs at some of the uses for the cherries! Something else that we noticed was that the children look nearly identical. The only real differences are in the shoes and the fact that one has a red bow and the other a blue. As the story goes on it becomes increasingly difficult to tell which child is which…by the end, there are no bows or shoes. Just a world full of imagination.

 

Book Info

As I mentioned above, the book is written and illustrated by Vittoria Facchini. It was translated into English by Anna Celada. 5 Cherries was published by Enchanted Lion Books in 2017. You can find 5 Cherries on the Enchanted Lion Books website here on or Amazon here. A very big thank you to Enchanted Lion Books for sending me this beautiful book to review and share!

To check out another of my favorite beautiful books, head to this post!

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10 BEE-UTIFUL Picture Books about Bees

10 BEE-UTIFUL Picture Books about Bees

Spring has sprung…or in the case of Florida…spring has high-tailed it out of here and made way for summer! Spring always makes me think of gardens, flowers, and BEES! The kids and I have never done an in-depth study of bees, so I thought now […]

10 Beautiful Children’s Books about Birds

10 Beautiful Children’s Books about Birds

We adore birds. We love learning about them, watching them, feeding them, and reading about them! There are so many amazing books available about birds that would be fantastic additions to your homeschool lessons! I went a little rogue with this booklist and didn’t include […]

The Bluest of Blues- A Book Review

The Bluest of Blues- A Book Review

I have been completely smitten with biographical picture books lately. I have always found it fascinating to learn about someone from history, but there is something so special about reading about it in picture book form. Picture books add a certain element of magic to every topic, and biographies are no exception!

One of my brand new favorites is a book called The Bluest of Blues. Full disclosure here…I bought this book solely based on the beauty of the cover. I was captivated by the illustrations! Thankfully for me, the inside of the book is every bit as gorgeous as that front cover. In this instance, judging a book by its cover completely paid off!

The Bluest of Blues

The Bluest of Blues is a brand new book from author/illustrator Fiona Robinson. The book shares the story of the life of Anna Atkins and the first ever book of photographs. Anna Atkins lived in the 1800’s and is known today for being a botanist, artist, and photographer. Anna lived at a time where very few women entered the field of science or academia in general! Thankfully Anna had a wonderful and dedicated father who encouraged her every step of the way. Anna is very well known for her cyanotype prints of seaweed and other plants. You can still see her “poppy” cyanotype at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London!

Fiona Robinson so beautifully shares the life of Anna. The illustrations are some of the most beautiful I have seen. The gorgeous shades of blue with the occasional pop of color are just stunning. The blue of the pages is so gorgeously complemented by the inclusion of Anna’s cyanotypes. I am embarrassed to say I had never heard of these types of prints before. I am sure that I have seen them somewhere along the way but I have never heard a name attached to them!

Creating Our Own Sunprints

I love when picture books inspire us to create our own art. There is something about a well-done picture book that just gets the creative juices flowing. So, Anna created her cyanotypes using a special chemical on paper that then had to be exposed to the sun and run under water. There is a way to re-create this at home. I wasn’t feeling super motivated to mess with a bunch of chemicals, so thankfully for us, I found an amazing solution!

Nature Print Paper! Nature Print Paper is a fantastic product. We ordered a stack of paper on Amazon and it was ready to roll when we got it. We got a package of 40 papers, each 5×7 in size. All we had to do was lay the items that we wanted to print on top of the paper and then expose it to the sunlight for a few minutes. You can watch the paper changing…homeschool win…Science and Art in one! The items only need to stay in the sunlight briefly and then you dip them in a pan of water for a minute. After they dry you are left with absolutely GORGEOUS images. The stark white of the image against “the bluest of blues” 🙂

We are so eager to head to the beach and get some seaweed to try. I think it will be absolutely beautiful. It truly feels like you are creating a piece of art!

You can grab Nature Print Paper right on Amazon!

I hope you get a chance to read The Bluest of Blues and learn all about Anna Atkins. Try your hand at making some beautiful sun prints as well…super easy and absolutely beautiful!

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Friday Favorites- 3 Fantastic Books You Don’t Want to Miss

Friday Favorites- 3 Fantastic Books You Don’t Want to Miss

FRIDAY FAVORITES It is Friday again and that means it is time for another installment of my Friday Favorites! This week we have read some fantastic books! Featured this week are 2 picture books and 1 middle-grade novel that I read aloud to my kids. […]

Friday Favorites- Fabulous Picture Books

Friday Favorites- Fabulous Picture Books

  Happy Friday! Today is the first of what I hope to be MANY “Friday Favorites”. Every Friday I am hoping to share with you some of our very favorite books from the week. I always have so many books that I want to showcase, […]

Add Adventure to Learning with Literary Adventures for Kids

Add Adventure to Learning with Literary Adventures for Kids

 

Have you seen the movie The House With a Clock in Its Walls? I was so intrigued by this movie from the very first preview! Imagine my book nerd excitement when I found out that it was a book long before it was a movie! I was SO excited that we decided to purchase both the book and the newly released movie for our kids for Christmas!

As you may have guessed from previous posts, we are a huge read-aloud family! We start every day with a book! Most of our read alouds we just read and discuss as we go, but I wanted to do something a little different with this book. I was SO excited to find the online book clubs from Literary Adventures for Kids! They had exactly what I was looking for…actually it was more than what I was looking for! These online book clubs are not your mamas book discussions! This was completely out of the box thinking!! So, I want to share with you what this book club was all about and why we enjoyed it so much!!

What IS Literary Adventures for Kids?

Literary Adventures for Kids is an amazing website with a TON of literary study courses for kids of all ages. They have courses for:

  • Preschool-Early Elementary Literature Studies
  • Elementary-Middle School Literature Studies
  • High School Literature Studies

You will find courses that feature classic novels, poetry, modern literature, and even picture books!! The best part is, everything is completely set up for you and you can tailor the courses to fit your needs. You can use it as a self-paced literature study as I did…or you can use the course with a book club that you are a part of! The courses are very reasonably priced as well! Before I give you a review of the course I took on The House With a Clock In Its Walls, I want to give you a sampling of some of the other courses you will find here! You will find online book clubs for books like:

  • Mary Poppins
  • The Birchbark House
  • Stellaluna
  • The Giving Tree
  • Of Mice and Men
  • The Scarlett Letter

And so many more!

What Makes Literary Adventures for Kids Different!

I mentioned above that Literary Adventures for Kids is not your mamas book club! It takes what you would picture a typical book club to be…and expands it by leading you down “Rabbit Trails of Discovery”. I absolutely love this term they use because it is so accurate. As you are reading through each chapter of the book you will be learning about art, history, science, and more! When you reach the end of the book they even give ideas for an end of book party to celebrate! My kids and I are planning to do this when we watch the movie this weekend!

Rabbit Trails and Magic Dust

So, what exactly are rabbit trails and magic dust? Dachelle, the creator of our online book club uses the term rabbit trails to describe the discoveries that you will have while reading the book. For example, when reading the very first chapter of The House With a Clock In Its Walls, you learn that the house is filled with clocks. We take our rabbit trail by learning all about clocks! The course includes videos on the history of telling time, what sundials are, learning about Big Ben, and more! These rabbit trails are completely unexpected areas of learning. You are doing so much more than just discussing the book…you are discovering so many different topics! Just in chapter one, we take rabbit trails to learn about clocks, Sherlock Holmes, and Alladin’s Lamp! Just awesome! Dachelle also uses the term “magic dust”. The magic dust refers to the hands-on activities that are also included. During chapter one we made our own sundial!! This was such a huge hit with my kiddos! There are many hands-on projects as well as some cooking…instant pot mashed potatoes and chocolate chip cookies…YES PLEASE!

For More Information

To check out the amazing list of courses that are offered you can head on over to Hide the Chocolate Blog! There are so many courses that I know you will find one that you will love!!

You can save $5 by using code: HSONTHEBEACH at check out! (Coupon valid until 12/31/19)

Thank you so much Dachelle for sending me this fantastic book club to review! The kids and I absolutely loved this course. I can honestly say that the rabbit trails took us into such unexpected areas of learning that I never would have thought of on my own!

 

 

 

 

 

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A Review of Evan-Moor Skill Sharpeners Critical Thinking- Grade 2

A Review of Evan-Moor Skill Sharpeners Critical Thinking- Grade 2

  I was recently given the opportunity to review Evan-Moor’s Skill Sharpeners Critical Thinking for second grade! I was given the book in exchange for my honest review! Evan-Moor is my go-to for quality books to enrich our homeschool. I was so excited to have […]