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Product DetailsBook Review:  C is for Caboose:  Riding the Rails from A to Z by Traci N. Todd and Sara Gillingham. Published by Chronicle Books, 2007

“All aboard” is the first phrase of this book. Do you have a train enthusiast in your family? I sure do. My four-year-old son loves trains. He has a train table, Thomas the train videos, several train sets, plus lots and lots of train cars that he loves to hook into one long, long train. He even loves to hang out at the train station and watch them enter and exit the station. So this was a perfect alphabet book for him. C is for Caboose features vintage photographs and illustrations and alphabet letters made out of railroad ties! It teaches a little train history and facts throughout the book. I like G for Golden spike for the completion of the first transcontinental railroad. Isaac, my son, likes Y is for yard–seeing the many trains lined up in the train yard.

Whatever your child’s interests are, there’s bound to be an alphabet book on the subject. If not, let me know 🙂

autumn_sign_clipart_4Fall is the perfect time to teach your child about God’s artwork in creation. Point out the Fall leaves and discuss the four seasons. Name the different colors you see. Your child can paint her own Fall tree. You need washable paint in fall colors (red, yellow, orange, brown), a paintbrush, thick paper, a sponge, and a paper plate. You can cut the sponge into smaller pieces for each color. Squeeze the colors of paint onto the paper plate. Help her paint a tree trunk. Then show her how to dip the sponge into the paint and sponge-paint leaves onto the tree. Allow to dry and then hang it up. Happy Fall!

D Is for Drinking Gourd: An African American Alphabet (Alphabet-Arts & Culture)Book Review:  D is for Drinking Gourd by Nancy I. Sanders, Illustrated by E.B. Lewis, published by Sleeping Bear Press, 2007.

This beautifully written and illustrated alphabet book is superb for teaching your child African American history. A poem accompanies each letter and sidebars contain more detailed information for older kids and adults. My favorite letter is Qq:  Used to cover a bed at night or to keep warm on a cold buggy ride, Q is for the beautiful Quilts stitched together with love and pride. Sanders tells us in the sidebar how quilts hanging outside on the porch signified the house was safe for slaves to stop by. A quilt artist even stitched Bible stories in her Bible quilts from the 1800s. The book also tells about founding fathers, the Harlem Renaissance, jazz, March on Washington, slavery, olympians, and much more. D is for Drinking Gourd won a National Parenting Publications Award. You and your children will come away with lots of information and history about this culture.  Plus, it’s written by my friend and writing mentor, Nancy.

Here’s a fun writing activity that’s like magic. Using a white crayon and white paper, have the child write his name or a Bible verse (depending on age). Of course, he cannot see it very well. Then take watercolor paints and let your child paint the paper. The white words will be revealed.

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Activities and Book Reviews