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Books We Are Loving - January 2017

Illuminature Review at How we Montessori

I love reading book recommendations so today I thought I would share a few of my own. These are four books that we are loving this month! 

illuminature (worldwide) - This book is magical! It is a beautiful large format book with nice thick pages. It is fully illustrated and comes with a three colour viewing lens. illuminature takes readers on a tour through ten destinations, including the Simpson Desert (Australia). Each destination has three sections, the Destination page which details facts on the habitat, The Observation Deck in which you can spot animals and The Species Guide in which you learn more about each species. 

Illuminature at How we Montessori

The magic really occurs with the viewing lens. The illustrations on the Destination page and The Observation Deck are drawn in three colours so they come 'alive' when seen through the three colour viewing lens. When you look through the blue lens you see the nighttime and twilight animals. When you look through the green lens you see the habitat - the jungle, the leaves, the trees, the ocean. When you look through the red lens you see the daytime animals. The images are really clear when looking through the lens and you can't help but be 'wowed'! My children are intrigued and will look through this for hours.

Illuminature Nighttime and Daytime at HWM

The Species Guide (example above) contains black and white illustrations and information about each animal. It has a couple of sentences with a few facts, not too much, not too little. The novelty of using the viewing lens and gorgeous illustrations makes this book a delight, but it is also education where which the child will take away lots of interesting facts and pieces of knowledge! I recommend for ages 3-10 years. This is slightly different to what the publisher recommends but I know younger children will love looking through the pages. 

Separate is Never Equal, Last Stop on Market Street at HWM

Separate is Never Equal (worldwide) is about segregation and overcoming adversity. My children were saddened by this book but it such an important story. It is a true story of Sylvia Mendez (an American citizen of Mexican and Puerto Rican heritage) and her family fighting school segregation in California. It highlights the obvious bureaucratic discrimination that occurred not long ago. It is also a story of fighting for what you know is right. I would recommend for ages 5-12 years. It is a long story that has some complex terminology.  

Last Stop on Market Street (worldwide) is such a sweet, gorgeous story. The book follows a young boy and his Grandma home from church. It teaches us there is beauty in unexpected places, it is all around us if we look. You get a real feel for the environment through this story. It celebrates diversity and I love the use of language. This is a charming book I would recommend for ages 3-5 years. 

Have You Filled a Bucket Today? Review at How we Montessori

Have You Filled a Bucket Today? (worldwide) I really love the sentiment of this book. Each person has an invisible bucket that they carry around with them. Your bucket holds good thoughts and good feelings about yourself. When your bucket is full you feel happy and good. When your bucket is empty you feel sad and lonely. The book gives ideas on how you can fill your bucket and the bucket of others. It's not too over the top, many of the suggestions are simple, like saying hello to the bus driver. It has a message of spreading kindness and I find it heart-warming. I recommend for ages 4-9 years. This is not a book we read every day but more of an occasional read. 

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