By Bianca Schulze, The Children’s Book Review
Published: September 30, 2009

Thirty Days Has September: Cool Ways To Remember Stuff Thirty Days Has September: Cool Ways to Remember Stuff

by Chris Stevens

Reading level:
Ages 9-12

Hardcover: 128 pages

Publisher: Scholastic Nonfiction (December 1, 2008)

How I could I not mention this wonderful memory enhancing book on a day such as today, September, 30. I never pass up an opportunity to make life easier — with categories such as Excellent English; Hot on History; Geography Genius: Time, Weather, and Science; and magnificent Math; remembering everything is as easy as A…B…C…!

By Bianca Schulze, The Children’s Book Review
Published: September 24, 2009

In anticipation of the release of Return to the Hundred Acre Wood by David Benedictus, which goes on sale October 5th, I want to share this video of Jim Dale reading the exposition from Return to the Hundred Acre Wood during the recording of the audio book. Return to the Hundred Acre Wood is the first authorized sequel to A.A. Milne and E.H. Shepard’s classic books, Winnie-the-Pooh and The House at Pooh Corner to be written in over eighty years!

By Bianca Schulze, The Children's Book Review Published: September 23, 2009 Before I post my 2009 list of books that celebrate or embrace the fall season, I thought I would take this opportunity to revisit two of my favorite selections from 2008. South by Patrick McDonnell Reading level: Ages 3-6 Hardcover:

By Laura J. Colker, Ed.D.,  Reading is Fundamental
Published: September 22, 2009

According to G. Reid Lyon, former Chief of the Child Development and Behavior Branch of the National Institutes of Health, “If you do not learn to read and you live in America, you are not likely to make it in life.” As unsettling as this quote may be, it is all too often the outcome awaiting children with disabilities who cannot read. Reading supports all other academic skills. Without being able to read, children are not able to write or spell. Science, social studies, math, and technology will likewise prove elusive.

By Laura J. Colker, Ed.D.,  Reading is Fundamental
Published: September 17, 2009

“When parents are involved in their children’s education at home, they do better in school. And when parents are involved in school, children go farther in school and the schools they go to are better.”

A New Generation of Evidence: The Family is Critical to Student Achievement. (Henderson & Berla, 1994)

As the above quote suggests, it is a well-established fact that parental involvement is linked to children’s success at school. Thirty years of research—including the oft-cited studies by Joyce Epstein and her colleagues at Johns Hopkins University and Anne Henderson and colleagues at the Center for Law and Education—demonstrate the strong correlation between parental involvement and increased academic achievement. In fact, a home environment that encourages learning is more important to student achievement than the family’s income, education level, or cultural background. (Henderson & Berla, 1994). In addition, Herbert Walberg found that family participation in education was actually twice as predictive of academic learning as family socioeconomic status. Kellaghan, Sloane, Alvarez, and Bloom (1993), in their book Home Environment and School Learning, summarize the phenomenon this way:

By Bianca Schulze, The Children’s Book Review
Published: September 14, 2009

“Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them and try to follow them.” ~ Louisa May Alcott (Author of the classic children’s book Little Women)

Chicken Dance

Chicken Dance

by Tammi Sauer (Author), Dan Santat (Illustrator)

Reading level:
Ages 4-8

Hardcover: 36 pages

Publisher: Sterling (August 1, 2009)

What to expect:
Talent Shows, Ability, Chickens, Domestic animals, Humor

In life, we always find groups. Groups of like-minded beings (animals and people). Groups typically stick together because of race or breed, some stick together because of shared talents. It is usually these shared talents that give us purpose and sheer enjoyment in life.

By Bianca Schulze, The Children’s Book Review
Published: September 9, 2009

Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse

by Kaleb Nation

Reading level:
Ages 9-12

Hardcover: 464 pages

Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky (September 9, 2009)

What to expect: Mystery, Magic, Gnomes, Mages, Action, Coming of age

Kaleb Nation, the 20-year-old author of Bran Hambric: Farfield Curse, began writing this book at the age of 14. After spending four years rewriting the book, Kaleb has produced an energetic and exciting first novel. The prologue sets an eerie and suspenseful pace that reads like the scene from a good movie. Bran’s mother dies protecting him from a mage, and manages to transport him safely to a locked vault within a bank and completely clear his memory. Fast forward 8 years and the story takes off.