Thursday, May 14, 2015

"S is for Smiling Sunrise" Alphabet picture book (TOS Review Crew)

If you have a Pre-K - second or third grader, you might be interested in this latest item I received for review, S is for Smiling Sunrise, which is an ABC Picture book. In addition to the book, if you visit the WordsBright website, you can download a free Teacher's Guide (*Note: the Teacher's Guide comes in two levels Pre-K/K and K-3), and a free mp3 alphabet song.
This is a nice addition to any Alphabet Book collection (yes... I have one of those :)), and can be used with a variety of ages. Each letter of the alphabet is accompanied by an illustration and a rhyme. The rhymes are positive interpretations of things in the world around us, and celebrate goodness, beauty, and wonder. The first time we read this book, I had my 7 year old read it to me. Another time I read each letter/rhyme and asked youngest if he thought it was talking about goodness, beauty or wonder. Beauty and Wonder were often both his answer. It was a nice comprehension exercise which helped him think a little more critically about what we were reading.

Some of the letter rhymes offer a little art, others a little science, and a few emphasize character-training, or are more relational in nature. Almost all of them are good jumping off points for discussion.

If you have children on the younger range, there is a one page Parent's Guide with Pre-K recommendations to extend the learning. While a little young for my second grader, I personally felt that the Teacher's Guide could be most useful for the 4-6 year old range. It includes Concepts, Questions, Vocabulary and Activity suggestions for each letter/rhyme of the alphabet. If you do a "letter of the day" in your homeschool, this might be right up your alley!

No offense to the person singing the "S is for Smiling Sunrise" ABC song, but I didn't find it to be something that my children young or old would be interested in listening to. However, it was nice to hear the way the rhymes fit together in the traditional ABC tune, so that they can be sung at home.

When reading this book to my 2nd grader I have to admit that he wasn't overly excited about the concept. In his opinion, ABC books are for "little kids." However, once I explained to him that ABC books can be used to explore different topics, and show what you know about something he was much more willing to be a participant in listening and discussing.

Not So Nutty Nitty Gritty 
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