Miss Nelson is Missing

What a great book to compliment Gil’s latest Heritage2Legacy podcast, My Favorite First (Controlling) Teacher.  If you haven’t met Miss Nelson and/or Viola Swamp then let me be the first to introduce you to them both.    And don’t forget to listen to our August H2L podcast HERE!

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Miss Nelson is Missing
Author:  Harry Allard
Illustrator:  James Marshall

Summary

A classroom of unruly students treat their caring and lovely teacher with complete disrespect. They throw spit balls during story-time and refuse to sit in their seats during math. They take advantage of their teacher’s good nature until she disappears and they are faced with a vile substitute. Near her wits’ end, Miss Nelson doesn’t come to school one day. Instead, the kids have a vile substitute–the nasty Viola Swamp–who loads the boys and girls with homework and never gives them a story hour. By the time Miss Nelson finally returns, the children are so grateful they behave well. But now Viola Swamp is missing…

Viola Swamp

Pictures From Our Vacation

Pictures From Our Vacation
Author and Illustrator: Lynne Rae Perkins

SNAP! With their new cameras

SNAP! a brother and sister SNAP! take pictures of their family vacation.

But when they look back at their photographs they see: the back of Dad’s head, feet (not sure whose), a container of noodles. 

Even the motel was disappointing: no water in the pool, the badminton racquets were shaped like potato chips, it rained for days. When the family goes to visit relatives at the farm, everything changes.  Tasting strawberry and whipped cream dessert and making memories with cousins fills their hearts and minds with pictures like no camera ever could.

“It’s hard to take a picture of a story someone tells, or what it feels like when you’re rolling down a hill or falling asleep in a house full of cousins and uncles and aunts.  Those kinds of pictures I can keep in my mind.”

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This is a great book to share with children as they come back to school after summer break to ignite “What I Did on My Summer Vacation” discussions and journal writings.   We also chose it for our July H2L book prompt!

Mary Byrne Kline

 

 

 

 

Knots on a Counting Rope…

This is far more than a story; it is a tender dialogue between a weathered, aged Indian grandfather and his grandson around a cozy campfire as the sun is setting and darkness is quickly falling.  They sit cross-legged, facing one other, each holding onto a rope with small knots along the length of it.

“Tell me the story again, Grandfather. Tell me who I am.”

“I have told you many times, Boy.  You know the story by heart.”

Yet once again patiently and gently Grandfather relays the story of the night the child was born.  The child was not strong, but born weak and frail, and  been born with a dark curtain in front of his eyes.

Grandfather shares how he’d carried his infant grandson outside to the horses and that the boy raised his tiny arms up to touch them. With each retelling, another knot is tied in the rope.  As the boy grows, he gains strength, and Grandfather teaches the boy to ride his own pony. Every day along a trail, he follows his grandfather on his pony until he can ride holding his own reins.

One day his Grandfather tells him, “You have raced the darkness and won! You now can see with your heart,  feel a part of all that  surrounds you. Your courage lights the way.”

Far more than a story; this is a lesson in love and trust between generations that will warm your heart. You may even feel yourself lingering over the exquisitely beautiful illustrations.

Mary Byrne Kline

Review by Publisher Weekly

Gathered near a campfire under a canopy of stars, a Navaho Indian boy hears the tale of his birth from his grandfather. Born on a windy night, the child was weak and frail. In the early morning, Grandfather brought him out to meet the morning. Two blue horses galloped by, stopped and looked at him; the baby raised his arms to them. Grandfather said, “”This boy child will not die. The great blue horses have given him the strength to live.” Named Boy-Strength-of-Blue-Horses, the child later needs that well of strength to deal with the fact that he is blind. Rand’s atmospheric, vivid paintings evoke the tale’s sensibility as they move it along. The beauty and vastness of the Western sky and the intimacy of two loving figures by a campfire are portrayed with equal fluidity. A rich tale of intergenerational love and respect, this is bittersweet and unsentimental. It is a moving collaborative effort that reverberates long after the book is closed. Ages 5-8.

An absolutely fabulous read aloud VIDEO is available at Storyline Online  – The SAG Foundation.   Enjoy and then consider purchasing a copy for your home library!

A Nest is Noisy!

Our next theme is for the birds – literally!

Birds & Feathers

We begin with our focus book, A Nest is Noisy by one of our favorite author/illustrator teams when it comes to informational books.  Each page is brimming with pure visual delight which will prompt exactly the conversations you want your child to have about the amazing world God has created.  Climb into the world of birds and their nests and (learn) enjoy!

PS Do you have a story about a bird or nest from your childhood?  If so – then you are all set for your next H2L adventure!

From the Publisher
“Fans will rejoice at the first sight of A Nest Is Noisy,” promises School Library Journal, and they’re right. From the award-winning creators of An Egg Is Quiet, A Seed Is Sleepy, A Butterfly Is Patient, A Rock Is Lively, and A Beetle Is Shy comes this gorgeous and informative look at the fascinating world of nests, from those of tiny bee hummingbirds to those of orangutans high in the rainforest canopy. Poetic in voice and elegant in design, this carefully researched book introduces children to a captivating array of nest facts and will spark the imaginations of children whether in a classroom reading circle or on a parent’s lap.

Download this TeacherGuide , a gift from the author & illustrator, and file it away to use next year with one of their award-winning books.