Saturday, July 24, 2010

What My Child is Reading - July 24, 2010 - Science Themed Stories and Poems

We've been on kind of a science kick lately, and it was reflected in our reading this week.

For our family read aloud book, I picked up Kathleen Krull's Leonardo da Vinci. It's part of her "Giants of Science" series I had been thinking of encouraging the older children to read. After the first few chapters of Leonardo da Vinci though, I decided to stick with reading these together.

Krull, has an engaging, conversational, writing style, and a way of bringing biographies to life for the modern reader. But, she does not shy away from the seamier details of great people's lives. In the first few chapters of this book, for instance, she spends a good deal of time focusing on the illegitimacy of Leonardo's birth. And, chapter 4 deals with his arrest on charges of homosexual behavior (which may, or may not have been founded).

Despite her delight in the dirty details, Krull does an excellent job of describing the times, and surroundings of the scientists, and the many influences that led them to become the giants of science. So, we are continuing to read through the book, but I will be editing it for younger ears, as we go.

On the lighter side of our reading, the little ones enjoyed several picture books this week. My favorite, and a favorite of my two youngest was Judy Sierra's The Secret Science Project That Almost Ate The School. The story is basically one long poem, or ode, to the dangers, and misfortunes of a third grade science fair.

Speaking of science, and poems, we have also been enjoying selections from Lee Bennett Hopkins' Spectacular Science a book of poems. Not having read a lot of poetry with the children, this has been an unexpected treat for all of us.

And, what would a week of science books be without Miss Frizzle, and her magic bus. In The Magic School Bus and the Science Fair Expedition, Joanna Cole & Bruce Degen take young readers on a tour of history, while the students of Miss Frizzle's class seek inspiration for their science fair projects from the "giants of science" themselves (see how nicely it all blended together?).

Be sure to check out what other's are reading, or join in and share your family's favorites, at this week's What My Child Is Reading blog hop, hosted by Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns.

It's great to be a homeschooler.


Debbie said...

A lot of Science going on there. It seems like I glanced at The Secret Science Project That Almost Ate The School, I will have to take a closer look at it.

Lady Chadwick said...

I read your list last week and it inspired me to keep track of ours. I also requested a few books from both lists :)

I think this is a great idea to share good books and to remember in the future what our kids were reading.

Ticia said...

Wow it did blend well together! So, how old are your kids you read aloud the DaVinci book to? I'm trying to think when I'd want to get into that with my kids.

Christy Killoran said...

You always have great books on your list. I'm making note of these for future reading!

An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

Ticia - I read it to all the kids (4-12), but if I didn't have the 9-12 group, I would probably not be reading it to just the younger ones alone.

Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

Thanks for joining WMCIR and sharing your picks. Strangely, Anna absolutely refuses to read or watch MSB - she doesn't like fearful Arnold. Oh well, hopefully she gets over that in a couple of years and discovers this great series. In the meantime I keep accumulating MSB books :) I'll see if our library has Spectacular Math - we love poems here.

Anne said...

We have Spectacular Science and enjoy the poems too. Have you seen the Magic School Bus chapter book series? I had some in my classroom library when I was still teaching older kids. They're nice to transition from well-loved characters to a little meatier reading.