Saturday, September 4, 2010

What My Child is Reading - September 4, 2010 - Books About Bats

We started our bat themed reading with Bat's Big Game retold by Margaret Read MacDonald. The birds, and animals are playing a soccer game, and bat wants to join the winning team. At first he picks the animal team, after all, he has fur, and teeth - he must be an animal. Then, when they start loosing, he switches over to the bird team, after all, he has wings - he must be a bird.

The real problem comes when he switches back again, when the animals start scoring goals. Suddenly, everyone is on to him, and he is kicked off both teams. It's meant as a lesson in team spirit, but it also provided nice fodder for discussion. Is a bat a mammal, or a bird?

We found the answer in our next book, Nicola Davies' Bat Loves the Night. Told as a simple, narrative story, it is filled with factual asides, and begins with an introduction, that starts out,

"Bats are the only mammals that can really fly..."

So, with that question answered, we moved on to learn about the winter habits of red bats (and a number of other animals), in The Little Red Bat by Carole Gerber. It's wordier than Bat Loves the Night, but makes for a wonderful read-a-loud. And, the bright, fall colored illustrations by Christina Wald, add a lot to the wonder of the animal world, presented in the story.

We found many more bat facts in Zipping, Zapping, Zooming Bats by Ann Earle. But, as a Stage 2, Let's-Read-And-Find-Out Science book, it's probably more appropriate for older elementary school children, than for the preschool set.

The little ones enjoyed Baby Bat's Lullaby though, which highlights the care a mother bat gives to her baby. Written more as a poem, than a story, I found it challenging to read out loud. The rhythm is reminiscent of a beatnik poem, or rap, and I had a hard time keeping a straight face, even though the words are very sweet. It didn't help, that the Man of the House started in with mouth music, midway way through.

You can find more children's book reviews, and recommendations at this week's What My Child Is Reading blog hop, hosted by Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns.

It's great to be a homeschooler.


Christy said...

Great bat books!

Debbie said...

Sounds like some great books on bats. I think we will hold off a bit on reading about bats. I have used this as a deterrent to Selena leaving her bedroom window open all night after someone did have a bat fly in their child's bedroom window and bite the child.

MaryAnne said...

What a great collection of bat books!

Brimful Curiosities said...

I find bats very fascinating. We haven't read very many bat books yet. Only Stellaluna. I've been meaning to pick up Brian Lies' bat books, too. They look fun.

Holly said...

I'll have to get some of these--my 7-year-old likes reading about vampires; he should probably know a little more about bats too.

Ticia said...

I think we've read the Zipping....... Bat one.

My two favorite bat books are Stellaluna, and a Texas one called something like "Adventures of Hector the Bat," and it's sequel "Hector Saves the Moon," which I read to Jeff because it amused me so much, and he mumbled about political agendas and children books.

Raising a Happy Child said...

Great review of bat books and thanks for joining WMCIR! I am going to look up some of your choices. We read Magic School Bus Goes Batty, but it was too intense for Anna.