This book has an academic feel. Packed with research and written with a scientific viewpoint, The Secret Language of Dogs is a serious work for pet owners who truly want to bond with and understand their dogs. It is a valuable toolbox of information for those who are training dogs. Understanding is, after all, a key ingredient in social bonding with both humans and animals.
This would be a good research book for junior high students studying about dogs.
Here are some additional dog-themed learning resources for the dog-lover in your family:
I give this book 4 stars.
A Fraction's Goal-Parts of A Whole is a special treasure I found on Overdrive (my library's eBook and audiobook collection). That makes this more of a recommendation than a review.
This is a picture book in rhyme that very casually teaches a concept that many children fear: fractions.
Starring colorful cats and bold colors, the book takes a playful approach to teaching math ideas.
I checked this book out to read to my 3rd grader, though my 4th grader enjoyed it as well. Later I caught them "playing" math by making fractions of random things like stuffed animals, shoes, and paper shapes they made. They even polled each other about their favorite things and made fractions and pie charts of the results.
In my opinion, books that get results like this are worth sharing. Education shouldn't be a fight. This book made an important lesson effortless and fun. A Fraction's Goal- Parts of A Whole would also be a great fit for cat-lovers using Kitty-Doodle's Homeschooling Curriculum.
Thankfully, this book is part of a whole series of books that teach math with a kid-friendly, picture book approach. The series includes:
The books are written by Brian P. Cleary and Illustrated by Brian Gable. If you aren't familiar with this author I challenge you to check out his work. He also has a series covering grammar. They're lots of fun. These book belong in your learning library!
Be sure to visit his website too. You'll find printables, games and teacher tools. It's worth the visit.
Of course, my admiration entitles this book to a five star rating and a recommendation I hope you'll take.
I also encourage you to check out your library's eBook lending system. There's no telling what treasures you may find there.
As an author who depends almost exclusively on spell check and editors, I wish I had had a book like this to learn from.
My 10 year old daughter struggles with dyslexia and speech/ language delays which makes spelling even more of a challenge. She doesn't always hear words as they are spoken, so trying to teach her from a phonetic base just wasn't working for us.
Dyslexia Games is our favorite new resource and we're enjoying trying out some excellent curriculum that is truly helping her.
In Master the Top 150 Misspelled Words you will find 45 spelling exercises that engage learners and support knowledge in a comfortable, casual way. Children will be asked to:
You can order your copy on Amazon for $24.95.
Want to see inside? Take a look . . .
The Queen’s Shadow is a picture book created for children between the ages of 7 and 11. The book is a mystery laced with educational value. The story begins when the Queen hosts a ball with various animals in attendance. During the ball she loses her shadow. Coming to her aid, the Mantis Shrimp plays detective, interrogating the other animals in attendance to determine who may have stolen the Queen’s shadow. Each animal uses their sight as as a defense to prove themselves innocent. This allows readers to discover facts about how each animal sees. After the resolution the author and illustrator, Cybèle Young, provides more educational value on how each animal’s eyes work and how the human eye works.
First, I think it’s a great concept to use story and weave in educational facts around it. When learning can be achieved in a painless way, it’s a happy day for everyone. I enjoyed the balance of grey and black as well as the use of color in the illustrations. I found the visually interesting.
However, I have a few observations that I think worked against the author’s goal to educate.
I agree with the narrator that the book is sophisticated. I just wonder if it is too sophisticated for its audience.
There are absolutely ways to use this book educationally, but it will take a little effort on your part to put the elements and ideas together to truly get the most out of it. I believe that, as a stand alone book to be used as a quick or casual read, this book is just too heavy and asks too much of young readers. I’m really torn on how to rate it because I see potential, however, I don’t feel the author gave us her best or knew her audience as well as she could have. If I have to work to make a book usable, I’m going to give a lower rating.
Disclosure: I received a free copy of The Queen’s Shadow: A Story About How Animals See from Kids Can Press via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
I give this book three stars
Series A Books 1-6
Teach Your Child To Read, Write & Spell:
100 Easy Bible Verses Psalms for Beginners
The Thinking Tree LLC
617 N. Swope St.
Greenfield, IN 46140
317.622.8852 PHONE (Dial +1 outside of the USA)
I admit that I discovered the DyslexiaGames.com website through a Facebook ad. It was their colorful, whimsical covers that caught my eye and my interest was piqued by the fact that they were materials designed with special needs learners in mind.
Inventor, Sarah Janisse Brown, was just a homeschool mom like us. She wasn’t planning a business, she was solving a problem. When Sarah’s daughter, Anna, was found to have Dyslexia she did what many of us have done, she went searching for answers. However, unlike many of us, Sarah found the answer she was seeking as she began to work with her daughter’s creativity to combat the symptoms of dyslexia. Her experiments proved helpful to her daughter, equipping her with the power to read fluently. These pretty, whimsical books give me hope that my daughter can also use these tools to correct her dyslexia symptoms.
Sarah’s products also work well with children on the autism spectrum or those with ADD/ ADHD. Since I have all of these issues present in my home, I’m very anxious to see how each product works for my children.
I recently received a box filled with goodies to try and I’m expecting another box coming in a couple of days. I can’t even tell you how eager I am to give them all a whirl. These are beautiful books, well made and homegrown from the heart of a mommy who wanted to help her child learn. What can beat that?
Consider this my teaser. In the coming weeks I’ll be sharing my thoughts with you on each specific item I receive. In the meantime, let me show you what I’ll be trying:
Teach Your Child To Read, Write & Spell: 100 Easy Bible Verses Psalms for Beginners (Current value $34.99)
This workbook is truly beautiful and packed full scriptures to copy, illustrate and subtly engage children in the act of spelling, writing and reading. When pages are completed they can be colored and the book preserved as a faith-filled keepsake of your child’s learning journey.
We also received a .pdf copy of the Devotional Homeschooling Journal & Handbook (Current value $24.50). This resource claims to enable students to study eight subjects with daily Bible reading. Comprised of over 350 pages, I have confidence it will live up to those claims.
In the next few days I’ll be receiving:
If you’re already sold, hop by Amazon to see the full range of books available for homeschooling, creativity and dyslexia.
Are you looking for a fun way to teach a tricky topic like dangling participles? Don’t Dangle Your Participle by Vanita Oelschlager delivers laughs and educational value in a 42 page book designed to teach children ages 6-10.
The book opens with a rundown on what a participle is and a few examples which serve to explain the importance of correctly placing the participle.
The academic tone of the first two-page section made my children squirm a little as they began to think that this book was going to be too much like a text book with a couple cute images thrown in to tease them.
Then we turned the page.
Beautiful, full-page illustrations popped with color, bringing to life some goofy sentences with participles placed all wrong. Even my youngest was catching on to the silliness.
Each goofy page was followed by a corrected sentence and an illustration to express the change.
The contrast was obvious and the problems were more quickly noticed as we progressed through the book.
Each participle is written in italics which helps the kids to spot them faster.
I thought this book was clever and educational. After their initial scare, my children were very pleasantly surprised that this book really was fun. Listening as they giggled and shouted out the correct sentences before I could flip the page, was all the confirmation I need that they were enjoying this unexpected lesson in grammar.
The website provides some neat ideas for using this book in a homeschool setting. I especially like this suggestion:
I’m sure we’ll revisit the book in the future, both for reviewing the concept of dangling participles and for a hilarious moment together.
I give this book five stars.
Order your copy on Amazon or Barnes&Noble.Disclosure: I received a free copy of Don’t Dangle Your Participle from Vanita Books via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
I am trying to add a bit more poetry into our homeschool. Ivy in Bloom is a perfect resource in reaching that goal.
Ivy in Bloom by Vanita Oelschlager is a clever, out-of-the-box story that infuses famous lines written by well known poets of the past with a modern children’s story written in poetic verse.
At the surface, the book appears to be a poetic story of little Ivy Van Alsberg’s deep desire for spring.
Sick of the gloom, she begins to describe the chilly March day and imagine the changes on their way when April arrives.
Within her descriptions are familiar lines borrowed from poems of the past.
Here’s an example:
In the story there is a line which reads . . .
“She wore her yellow sun-bonnet
She wore her greenest gown;”
This is a segment of a poem by A.A Milne, but the story continues without quoting anymore of that poem. The full poem is in the back of Ivy in Bloom along with other poems whose lines were borrowed. Poets referenced include:
If you are using this in conjunction with your homeschool, don’t miss the extras provided here including a word search, word scramble, coloring pages and more.
The author and illustrator went out of their way to provide a truly usable tool for exciting children about the value, legacy and unfading message of poetry.
I give this book five stars and wish I could give more. It’s brilliant!
Order your copy of Ivy in Bloom on Amazon or Barnes&Noble.
I received a free copy of Ivy in Bloom from Vanita Books via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
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