Swirl by Swirl: Spirals in Nature

Posted Jan 18 2017 - 12:12pm
Subheader: 

I don't want to walk around in circles walk around in circles walk around in...

It's kind of unusual to be fascinated by spirals, or any shape for that matter. Spirals don't really do anything by themselves, as it's more what is spiraling and why that is the important thing. But getting kids to recognize the pattern of their existence is the first step.

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Message: 

Spirals are awesome.

Tuesday

Posted Jan 17 2017 - 12:22pm
Subheader: 

Tuesday... afternoon...

It's silly and rather surreal, with pretty pictures. There's not much to it beyond a lovely flight of imagination, and an implication that we're witnessing the beginnings of something truly unusual.

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Message: 

None.

Loudmouth George and the Sixth-Grade Bully

Posted Jan 16 2017 - 1:31pm
Subheader: 

Wrong book is wrong.

That's not how you deal with a problem like that. You really need to get an adult involved. You don't want to end up in a situation where the bully is actually violent with you. There are only threats in this story, but kids aren't going to come up with the solution to bullying on their own. This whole book is a bad idea. Don't do this.

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Message: 

People will stop bullying you if you trick them into eating something yucky.

Not a Box

Posted Jan 15 2017 - 12:05pm
Subheader: 

Not a bad story.

Very cute. It's a playful exploration of what you can pretend boxes to be. The line drawings are charming and imaginative, and the plot is true to how children love to play in boxes.

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Message: 

Imagination is awesome.

You Get What You Get

Posted Jan 14 2017 - 12:10pm
Subheader: 

At least the author can't complain about my review. She gets what she gets.

So, yeah. Magical solution to an actual real problem. That I really have. I'm pretty sure if I told my child, "You get what you get and you don't throw a fit," (he's almost three) he would throw a fit. And it's about as condescending as "Because I said so." Who gets to decide "what you get"?

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Message: 

You get what you get and you don't throw a fit.

Big Brothers are the Best

Posted Jan 13 2017 - 12:58pm
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Simple book about big brothers and new babies.

It's a list of things that big brothers can do that babies can't do. So even though the baby might get more attention sometimes, the parents still spend time with just the big brother. Your parents aren't going to forget about you or love you less when they have a baby.

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Message: 

Babies may need more attention, but big brothers get more perks.

The Night Dad Went to Jail

Posted Jan 12 2017 - 3:03pm
Subheader: 

Tough topic, but something some kids have to deal with.

It's an unpleasant topic, but it's definitely something that there are kids going through who need help coming to terms with it. I've seen this book in lists of "Bad Children's Books," like, ha ha, parents going to jail, but I think it treats the subject in a very respectful manner.

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Message: 

It's okay to feel upset that your parent is going to jail, and it's not your fault.

The Three Pigs

Posted Jan 11 2017 - 12:13pm
Subheader: 

I almost feel sorry for the wolf.

It's cute. I guess it really has the message of "Don't let yourself get boxed in by the story." "Don't kowtow to fate." Maybe that's reading too much into it, and it doesn't have a message at all, but that's the message I see in it. Which is a good message.

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Message: 

Don't let the outside world tell you who to be.

Russell the Sheep

Posted Jan 10 2017 - 12:11pm
Subheader: 

Clever illustrations, not much substance.

Not really a very interesting story. It's got cute pictures. It's kind of silly. But I'm not that impressed with the writing. There's definitely no message. It's just a very strange book and not very useful.

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Message: 

None.

The Empty Pot

Posted Jan 9 2017 - 12:34pm
Subheader: 

Doesn't give the best impression of Chinese people. Maybe some were too embarrassed to come?

Ping is the only one who brought an empty pot, so he's the only honest child in the entirety of China, so he's going to be the emperor.

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Message: 

Adults will lie to you in order to trick you into being honest to them.

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