Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Kinta and the Big Wave by

Good Day Dear Readers-
Love this book for two reasons. First, it's based on a true story. And I love that. Second, I remember reading in the news about this happening and think this book will be a great read when discussing weather disasters or waves/ocean themes. The pictures are well done, and show most of the story. 

I really couldn't come up with unique ideas on activities to go with this. But as I said, Kenta and the Big Wave by Ruth Ohi would make a great companion book to a themed earth science lesson. 

Happy Reading,
The Queen


Book Title: Kenta and the Big Wave
Author and Illustrator: Ruth Ohi

Book Information:

Publisher and date: Annick Press (July 30, 2013)
Reading level: 4 - 7 years
Book Info: Paperback: 32 pages
Genre: Based on true events picture book
ISBN-13: 978-1554515769

Book Theme:
Tsunami, Japan, survival, natural disasters, helping others, family

Book Summary
The tsunami has swept everything away--including Kenta's most prized possession.

When tragedy strikes Kenta's small village in Japan, he does all he can to hang on to the things that matter to him most.  But amidst the chaos of an emergency evacuation brought on by the tsunami, Kenta and his family must quickly leave their home. 

Climbing to safer ground, Kenta watches as his prized soccer ball gets swept away by the waves, never to be seen again...that is, until it washes up on a beach on the other side of the world, into the hands of a child who takes it upon himself to return the ball to its rightful owner.

Activity Adventures:

This would be a great book to start off a lesson on waves, storms, ocean weather....

Investigative Readers:

Crafty Ideas:
Younger children can make a wave bottle while teacher discussed how waves are formed.

Discussion Questions:
Visit Ruth Ohi's site for more information behind the story.

Authors Arena

Author & Illustrator: from author's website

I am the illustrator of  56 children’s picture books (15 of which I am also the author). I have had the great pleasure of illustrating for authors such as Joy Kogawa, Hazel Hutchins and Sharon Jennings.  I live with my family in Toronto, Canada.   I am a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design.
My books have been selected for the Pennsylvania Centre for the Book's “Baker’s Dozen”, the Canadian Toy Testing Council's "Great Books", the Ontario Library Association's "Best Bets", and the Toronto Public Library's "First & Best".  They  have been shortlisted for awards such as the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book, Amelia Francis Howard-Gibbons , Mr. Christie, and Blue Spruce.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Here I Am by Patti Kim

Good Day dear Readers,
Today, I've come across a delightful wordless book titled: Here I Am by Patti Kim. Experience a young boy's journey to a new land, with strange words and a loud, crazy culture to adjust to. Kim really helps a young person understand what it's like to walk in the shoes of a foreigner, along with showing how her story boy overcame his fear and stretched himself to make new friends.

I really found this story enchanting and full of learning possibilities. Think you will too. I included the book trailer because it was well done and helps add to the flavor of the book. I'd recommend viewing both.

Happy Reading,
The Queen


Book Title: Here I Am
Author: Patti Kim                                                                              Illustrator: Sonia Sanchez (Illustrator)

Book Information:

Publisher and date: Capstone (September 1, 2013)
Reading level: ages 5-9
Book Info: Hardcover: 40 pages
Genre: Children's Picture Book
ISBN-13: 978-1623700362

Book Theme:
*Wordless picture book that follows a child's "immigration journey" to the United States
*Deals with the emotions of acclimating to a new community and way of life

Book Summary
Newly arrived from their faraway homeland, a boy and his family enter into the lights, noise, and traffic of a busy American city. The language is unfamiliar. Food, habits, games, and gestures are puzzling. They boy clings tightly to his special keepsake from home and wonders how he will find his way. How will he once again become the happy, confident kid he used to be? Walk in his shoes as he takes the first tentative steps toward discovering joy in his new world.

Activity Adventures:
Group Activity: Talk about various places people come from. Using a world map, or globe, pinpoint where everyone was originally born. Most might have come from the very town they are now living in. But others might come from different countries, or states. Tape their name to a pin-flag, or small sticker to mark where everyone is from.

Teacher can extend this activity to encourage children to explore the lands where their friends have come from. View videos, or look at books from the library. Allow children to talk about where they came from.

Writing Prompts: Imagine you wake up one morning in a whole different place that spoke a different language. Write about how you would feel if you didn't understand what people were saying, and couldn't read the words on signs. Think of what you could do to help yourself adjust to your new environment.

Discussion Questions:
  • Talk about ways to help new children adjust to your classroom or school. 
  • Do you have any foreign students in class? Let them talk about where they came from and what differences they encountered when moving to your city. 
  • Talk about the little red seed the boy kept in his pocket. What did the children think it was at first? How did it help the boy make friends? 
  • Talk about ways children can open themselves to new experiences.


Authors Arena

Patti Kim was born in Pusan, Korea, and immigrated to the United States on Christmas of 1974 with her mother, father, and older sister. At the age of five, she thought she was a writer and scribbled gibberish all over the pages of her mother s Korean-English dictionary and got in big trouble for it. Her scribbling eventually paid off. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Maryland. She is the author of A Cab Called Reliable. She lives with her husband and two daughters who give her plenty to write about every day. This is her first children s book.

 Sonia Sanchez--poet, activist, scholar--was the Laura Carnell Professor of English and Women's Studies at Temple University. She is the recipient of both the Robert Frost Medal for distinguished lifetime service to American poetry and the Langston Hughes Poetry Award. One of the most important writers of the Black Arts Movement, Sanchez is the author of sixteen books.