01 October 2009

Resources, haphazardly recommended

Thus far in my parenting career, I've come across a few schooly materials that stand out from the rest. You deserve to know about these materials, just because you're so you.

I don't have the wherewithal to offer up a gushy review of each, and I'm sorry about that. Suffice it to say, these puppies are pick of the litter. At least give them a run over at your library, if your library is cool enough to stock actual books on actual shelves. Some people's libraries are not so cool. I won't mention any names.

The ABC's and All Their Tricks by Margaret M. Bishop, for all those times you wish you knew whyfore W or whyfore J.

Geography Songs Kit
from Rainbow Resource Center, because singing "TURKMENISTAN! TAJIKISTAN! UZBEKISTAN!" is sure to make your kid a hit at birthday parties. No, really.

Family Math, by Jean Stenmark, et al. This thing is overflowing with really good ideas for turning everyday activities into math lessons. I'm a math dropout myself, and I really appreciate some hand holding when it comes to mathy topics. But I daresay even the math geniuses among us might enjoy shaking a few math things up a bit. Look, I'm just saying . . .

Handbook of Nature Study
, by Anna Botsford Comstock. Everything you never knew you wanted to know about just about everything in your backyard, the neighbor's backyard, and that guy's yard over there, with a few facts germane to the local byways thrown in for good measure. I don't know what I'd do without this lovely book, and I'm serious. It's great. A tiny, tad bit Darwinist in it's initial approach, but even Darwin can't make a mess of everything.

Finally, the eponymous Tom Brown's Field Guide to Nature and Survival for Children, because everyone deserves to know the best way to stalk a coon. This book is really fun, especially if you've a few cubs in your pack that need serious lostproofing.

I'll post more as I come across it. And if you have some treasured resource in your parenting coffers, please, please, please, please tellums all about it. Please. Thank you.


Theophil Jones said...

I recommend The Oxford Book of Children's Verse. It's a beautiful collection with a strong tendency towards moralistic, sailing, and critter poems. My kids like them to be read to them during dinner.

Well, more than the Wall Street Journal, anyways.

lisa said...

stalking coon - check.
geography nerd-dom - check check.

Ewe said...

I second the Geography Songs and Handbook of Nature Study. I've never heard of the others. Thanks for sharing. Keep sharing as you think of more!
The only one I can think of now is My Book House. It is a set of 12 books with a parent's guide and the older set you can get, the better. We bought our set for about $100 at a used book store. It wasn't in perfect shape, but the volumes were readable. I believe if you read the entire set to your children (and we are gradually, a volume at a time), your children would be very well read for children's literature. Starting with Mother Goose and going through Shakespeare, it is nice to have it all in one place. There are many books that we will read in addition to this (instead of just a short exerpt in some cases) but it is nice to expose them to all this.

Hannah said...

Handbook of Nature Study: Christmas present from last year. :) Many thanks for the list!

Reb. Mary said...

What do I like even more than finding a really great resource? Having someone else do the work of finding a really great resource for me, of course. :D

lisa said...

I second that. Thanks Gauntlets :)