Recommended Reads

What’s in Our Book Bag – June

What’s In Our Book Bag is a monthly post in which I review some library books using Montessori criteria.

For tips on how to use your library to source Montessori friendly books and to read the criteria I apply when choosing books check out A Montessori Library.

We had a lovely morning at the library yesterday doing Rhyme Time with lots of other babies. We also picked up some fresh books to add to our fiction rotation. This week I’m hoping to get to the teachers library and pick up some non-fiction, the non-fiction on offer in the public library is rather boring and caters for much older children than Alfie.

This week we picked up some beautifully illustrated books as well as a very rhythmic jazz inspired story which Alfie enjoys bopping away to. As always these books are not a perfect fit for Montessori and we’ve made some compromises but only when the story is worth it!

Baby’s Got The Blues by Carol Diggory Shields

My favourite poet is Langston Hughes of the Harlem Renaissance, this book reminds me of his famous poem the Weary Blues. The style of the illustrations is less than ideal as they are highly stylised but the text is brilliant, full of rhyme, alliteration and very well paced. A quality piece of literature in a familiar setting, great for Montessori Homes.

Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet & Allan Ahlberg.

A classic read! Gorgeous detailed illustrations and a culturally rich text make this an enjoyable Montessori friendly book, even if it does edge towards fantasy! This is one we will add to our own collection of books as I already know it by heart and the different characters are lots of fun to mimic.

Smelly Louie by Catherine Rainer

Poor Louie!! He just wants a unique smell! This is a fun story with plenty of opportunity for sensory play afterwards. I love the style of the art work too, you can really see the creative process on each page. Bonus Montessori-Friendly points are being awarded for showing the scenes from a child’s vantage, points being deducted though for having Louie chat to the fox.

Where, Oh Where, is Rosie’s Chick by Pat Hutchins

In terms of Montessori this is a travesty. Very unrealistic and garish illustrations and animals having conversations. BUT there’s plenty of repetition meaning plenty of chances for language acquisition in the young and participating for the older kids.

Kicking A Ball by Allan Ahlberg

Another book from the Ahlbergs, wonderful rhyme and metre in this story and a topic that’s very appealing to boys! The layout is somewhat confusing but for a confident reader or for reading with support this book is ideal for engaging boys.

The only think lacking from our choice is diversity, I must make a greater effort to reflect a REALISTIC world view back to Alfie. There’s far too many white children here!!

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