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Wildwood Wisdom
Wildwood Wisdom
by Ellsworth Jaeger
Edition: Paperback
Price: $12.54
88 used & new from $7.73

2 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not helpful when your son wasn't meant to read the book, December 19, 2015
This review is from: Wildwood Wisdom (Paperback)
I am looking for a woodcraft book written for young people that is information dense. In all honesty, modern books just aren't cutting it.This one is incredible- if you want amazing information this book can't be beat. The trouble is, looking into "classic" books like this one makes me realize how my son absolutely was never meant to be the target audience. Mind you, I can deal with dated language and general insensitivity, but I can't have my son reading a story glorifying a man chasing a "coon" up a tree and threatening to shoot him if he didn't give up a fur coat. This is practically on every few pages, by the way. My son has the right to enjoy an informative nature book without being the target of the author's vitriol. If you are a child of color who would like to read a woodcraft book without feeling bad with every chapter, you're out of luck on this one.

I normally don't get all "touchy" and "PC" and "whiny liberal" but as a mother I have to set my limits. If anyone knows of a book as good as this one that skips over the unrelated racism, please let me know.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 13, 2016 5:21 PM PDT


Birds of the Northwoods Activity Book: A Coloring and Learning Guide
Birds of the Northwoods Activity Book: A Coloring and Learning Guide
by David Grack
Edition: Paperback
Price: $7.95
42 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars and this book provides an easy introduction to information seeking skills, November 6, 2015
I use this books with my students. They are required to research information for themselves, and this book provides an easy introduction to information seeking skills. The pages include the same worksheet format with a different bird on each page. Students need to find the length of the bird, its habitat, when they are likely to see the bird in their area, find 5 facts and color the picture according to the color key. There's an answer key at the back. My students adore the activity.


Public School Superhero
Public School Superhero
by Chris Tebbetts
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $10.14
180 used & new from $0.01

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Writing about someone else's experience is hard to do......, November 5, 2015
This book will surely be a hit with kids, especially with its semi-graphic novel format. The story is good, but I found a few flaws that were distracting to me, as an adult. First off, I applaud James Patterson for making the protagonist a black boy. There are too few of them in children's literature. The problem I had with it, though, is that Patterson isn't fluent in African American vernacular but tries to use it anyway, which comes across as awkward. And to be brutally honest, patronizing at times. He uses some popular AA names but others lean closer to stereotypical names that aren't used in the way white media claims. The protagonist is bullied and called "Grandma's Boy" which....is an odd reason for bullying. In many minority communities, relationships with grandparents are tight and not really a cause for ridicule. Patterson uses some coded language to explain why his middle school is so bad, like naming it "Union Middle School." This is annoying. The description of the school is full of inner city stereotypes. Little is done to address the root causes of problems in the inner city. The book is an example of how someone tries to write a story about a cultural experience with which he simply isn't familiar. It's hard to achieve, let alone master. I thank Mr. Patterson for attempting to "get it" and for reaching out to children of color, and helping to popularize black protagonists. But I would look at this book as entertaining, and a sympathetic white man's impression of what inner city schools are like.


The World of Eric Carle: Let's Learn Together: Quiz It Pen Box Set
The World of Eric Carle: Let's Learn Together: Quiz It Pen Box Set
by Editors of Publications International
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $23.98
15 used & new from $4.56

4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent if you know what to expect from it, April 16, 2015
This works very well if you understand how the activity works. I do admit this should be fleshed out more in the parents guide. First off, bear in mind that this is not an independent activity. Starfall will be a much better choice if you need something independent. With the Quiz It Pen, "Let's Learn Together" you need to read the questions aloud. This is okay, and even excellent. You can know directly what your child finds easy and what she finds challenging. You see it immediately and can discuss the problem with your child. There's no vagueness. The questions range from dead easy to fairly advanced. Again, since children are all over the bell curve at this point, that's not necessarily a bad thing. The questions in this kit have a surprising amount of comprehension questions, such as "Which animal is UNDER the turtle?" or "What flies at night but is not a bird?" The pictures are beautiful and not the typical jarring cartoony cheapness of Leapfrog. I see in many Quiz It Pen reviews, the pen stops working quickly. We haven't had this problem yet, but I do not allow my son to play with the pen (not easy with a 3 year old) and I am worried about the material in the correct stars wearing away. So this might not be a product that is built to last, and thus is rather expensive for something that will wear out quickly. I would not use this as a center in a classroom because of that problem. But if you can get it on sale or as a gift, it's definitely worth using.


Children of God (The Sparrow series)
Children of God (The Sparrow series)
Offered by Random House LLC
Price: $11.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Thought provoking and moving., April 2, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The Sparrow was the best book I had read in years, so I was eager to read the sequel. As a stand alone book it's very good, but it didn't live up to The Sparrow. I personally find that the less I know about the aliens in any given sci-fi story, the more intriguing they are. Once they become too human like I lose interest. That certainly happened here, HOWEVER. I think the best sci-fi is thought provoking and should get you to consider things you would never have before. Children of God certainly does. This is not technology-based science fiction, which does nothing for me. (I don't care about photon powered engines). This is philosophical sci-fi. Anthropological sci-fi, perhaps even moral. Russell contends that contacting aliens, however well meaning, may well be selfish and irresponsible to the race we are trying to contact. This is a very rare approach for the genre, but her plausible story line makes a convincing case.


Antarktos Rising (Origins Edition)
Antarktos Rising (Origins Edition)
by Jeremy Robinson
Edition: Paperback
Price: $14.99
37 used & new from $10.26

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Puts the fun in Chritian Fundamentalist., March 29, 2015
Attention readers with the tastes of 10 year old boys. Do you want to see a super hero face off with a dinosaur? But do you need this to be the creative work of a grown man? Then Antarktos Rising is the book for you! This novel manages to be both ridiculous and page turning, blending the most obnoxious of creationist and conspiracy theories into a deep fried bacon onion ring double cheese burger of a story. You will feel sick with shame and pleasure at the same time. You will wince at every cheap ethnic stereotype that Jeremy Robinson means in the nicest way possible. Just remember: the protagonist is white and his wife was black. Therefore, not inappropriate! You will also feel like you are watching a summer action movie, and find yourself having a surprisingly good time. For those who complained about the book being evangelical propaganda: Yes. It's the most awesome evangelical propaganda you will ever read. Sooooo much better than Left Behind. To give this book credit, there was a female protagonist whose purpose was not to be sexy, or the hero's loving wife. She has Thoughts and Decisions and Conversations With Other Female Characters That Aren't About Men. This is rare in action media in general, and certainly rare with male writers of a socially conservative bent. Good job, Robinson, for Mirabelle, and I mean that sincerely. In fact, I want to get the next in this series, read it when I go to bed, and hate myself in the morning.


Erotic Innocence: The Culture of Child Molesting
Erotic Innocence: The Culture of Child Molesting
by James R. Kincaid
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $74.95
42 used & new from $2.19

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Flawed argument- Concern over something means you care about nothing else, February 14, 2014
A few contentions Kincaid has are already well proven- the Satanic Panic was a terrible, shameful case of mass hysteria. Hollywood and the American media has eroticized children in various, peculiar ways. Those are nothing new. But Kincaid then downplays the reality of sex abuse by conflating it with media hype. There were no child-abducting Satanic cults, but priest abuse was common because it was so rarely addressed, allowing a small number of priests to rack up a large number of victims. Human trafficking is also a problem that is more common than we like to think. Children are frequently targeted. Brown children, but children.
The weakest argument, though, is the contention that a focus on sex abuse allows us to ignore other forms of abuse. I suppose mentioning illiteracy is a way to ignore homelessness, or that focusing on childhood hunger by providing free school lunch is a way to ignore the drug addictions of their parents. Or that focusing on the drug addictions of parents is a way to ignore the war in Iraq. Or something. I can't believe he wrote the whole thing without that flawed logic hitting him.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 8, 2015 7:10 AM PDT


Navigating the Information Tsunami: Engaging Research Projects That Meet the Common Core State Standards, K-5
Navigating the Information Tsunami: Engaging Research Projects That Meet the Common Core State Standards, K-5
by Kristin Fontichiaro
Edition: Paperback
Price: $22.37
24 used & new from $3.70

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Some good ideas, some ridiculous ones, September 14, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Information seeking literacy is an underestimated discipline that needs more focus in education, but many classroom teachers believe that research skills are for middle school and up, or don't know how to tackle them. This book provides research projects for grades K-5.

Pros:

1.The book is well organized and includes specific standards of the common core. It's nearly scripted, taking some of the brain work out for the teacher.

2. It includes hi-tech and non-tech resources and activities, making the lessons suitable for schools of all funding levels.

3. It focuses on collaboration with the school library media specialist. At last, a book for collaborative work! (With the text written towards the teacher, though).

Cons:
1. Here's one thing on the resource list for the very first lesson: A real mammoth tooth. No, seriously, Fontichiaro actually suggests that you can just borrow it from your local natural history museum.

2. The book has decent reproducibles but it's in a small form and can't be reproduced on the Xerox machine without a lot effort, unless you want small papers with huge margins.

3. The resources often require subscriptions, which is unrealistic for one lesson plan and I prefer free resources when a teacher already paid for a lesson book. It feels like sneaky advertising from companies or a "hook." Also, with just the URL address, you don't know what the resource actually looks like and can't decide for yourself if it's decent or not.

4. Since this book involves a lot of collaboration with school librarians, the book should be directed to them too.

5. The book would be better if it also included 21st Century Skills standards.


Pilgrim's Wilderness: A True Story of Faith and Madness on the Alaska Frontier
Pilgrim's Wilderness: A True Story of Faith and Madness on the Alaska Frontier
Offered by Random House LLC
Price: $11.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A slice of Americana Gone Rotten, July 29, 2013
I'm reading the book right now. Fascinating stuff. I'll warn people- a lot of it you won't be able to stomach, particularly the abuse of the children. We Americans tend to hold free-spirited eccentrics in high regard, especially since the late 1960's, but this will disillusion a lot of people who romanticize living off the grid. Though the abuse to the reader is fairly obvious, it's clear that Pa Pilgrim was good at surrounding himself by people who wanted to believe in the fantasy of a sweet, back-to-nature hippie family, so they turned blind eyes to the strangeness and abuse markers. Meanwhile he kept his family isolated enough that few people had the chance to lose their affection for them. When Pa Pilgrim's mask did slip he'd move on. Equally fascinating is the tension between residents and rangers in national parks. I am a city dweller and never really knew this stuff, and Kizzia offers a good glimpse into the viewpoints of both sides.


No Title Available

8 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Impractical and absurd, May 20, 2012
I know Americans believe the French do everything better but in truth, they like simple baby food with few ingredients like everyone else. The ones I know don't even really *make* baby food as much as they mash up whatever the family is eating. They are not interested in making complicated recipes that are not cost effective and will likely wind up wasting so many ingredients. First off, let me warn you that if you are not a family of means, don't even bother opening the book. The recipes call for quail eggs, goat cheese, and water cress. It specifies what you can get at the grocery store and what you need at the farmer's market. Because when you're a working mother you totally want to make two trips! If you're hoping for low prep and clean up time, move on.

There are plenty of other ways and resources to make healthy, delicious baby food. Much easier and much more frugal ways.

If you want to make use of this book, I recommend making the recipes and stuffing them between tiny pieces of bread and calling them tea sandwiches. They are indeed delicious and you will appear the fanciest of all the pants at the church fundraiser or book club.


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