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Monday, April 11, 2016

Some Books We Are Reading

Here are some of the books currently being read at our house:

Betty G. Birney's Humphrey's series is lovely!  Humphrey is a little classroom hamster and has all sorts of adventures as he goes home with students on the weekends.  He gets to know the kids and their families and some of their challenges.  He helps families as he can (for example he unplugs a family's TV set that they are glued to and the family reconnects).  Humphrey is sweet and caring.  Abby and I read The World According to Humphrey together as our read aloud.  It's easy to read, fun and sweet.  Perfect for a second grader who eats books for breakfast.

Nathan started reading this series at school.  He went to a Christian school, so I trusted that the books would be good reads.  He is devouring them, reading sometimes three 300-page books in a week (and then going some weeks without reading).  It is overwhelming for me to keep track of what they are reading, especially since none of these books are what I read in Germany when growing up.  This series would have not been my first choice, had I not trusted the school.  It deals with animals and the author(s) take a nature mysticism point of view.  Since they are animals, they do not act as humans would or should.  In Seekers for example, there is little bear who is always thinking about how nice it would be to live without his sick brother. 
 On the positive side, it does teach him about the struggles animals go through, such as scarce food sources, etc.  And it has him reading.  I've since done my research and picked two series to read with him after this book and seeing if we can't get him reading something else (Mismantle Chronicles by M. I. McAllister as well as the Kingdom Series by Chuck Black).  I also have not read enough of this series to give a full review.  Keep that in mind.

Hannah is learning about colors and body parts.  Her favorite?  Armpits!  They get tickled and she loves it.  She enjoys animal books the most and points them out and squeals in delight.  

Isabelle is reading various books from the library.  Her favorites are still Berenstain Bears.  Her current favorite is the Prized Pumkin.  We are big fans of the Berenstein Bears and there is probably one for just about any issue you encounter with your kids.  Well, most anyways.  Plus, at less than $4 a piece, they make excellent stocking stuffers and presents from siblings.  Amazon currently has 3 free apps that read Berenstain Bears books to your kids.  
Isabelle also told me she only likes animal books, not people, so we try to oblige.  One of her all-time favorites is Little Bear by Elsa Homelund-Minerik and her favorite story is of a goblin who looses his shoes.  These stories are sweet as well and are all about animals and family and friends.
Both Berenstein Bears and Little Bear are part of our home library.

This is one of the books we just got from the library.  It teaches about plants and animals, living in the swamps and teaches how to count at the same time.  The illustrations are fantastic.  This is definitely a book I'd consider to actually keep.

Gardening for Beginners IR

We borrowed this from the library for Abby and myself.  It's a great book!  It goes over gardening basics and then over the complete care of some common garden plants.  I like that it focuses on some plants total care, rather than just general instructions.  The illustrations are pretty and colorful, exactly what would attract a budding gardener with red hair.  :-)

I splurged and got myself this book after starting to read the library's copy.  It quickly became apparent that this is a book you'd want a copy of.  Great encouragement and wonderful ideas on how to make your home a haven along with examples of what the Clarkson family did.  The books is also very encouraging.  There are many that are making you think: "Man, do I stink compared to those people."  This is not one of them. The authors continually remind you that it is hard to parent and encourage you to add little by little.  There is a workbook that goes along with the book but I haven't started it yet.

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