Vocabulary

Book Reviews - Books for Building Your Library

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This week, we offer books for building vocabulary: yours and your students'! This week's list includes books to help you reflect on your language, picture books about children who explore words, and grown-up books that play with language.

Waiting for Winter

This week's feature book for Artful Read Aloud is Waiting for Winter by Sebastian Meschenmoser. Elegantly simple, Waiting for Winter illustrates how having someone explain the meaning of a word is different from experiencing that word's meaning firsthand.

Click here to view this book in Amazon +
Click here to view this book in Amazon +

14 Cows for America

Carmen Agra Deedy wrote her new book, 14 Cows for America,in collaboration with Wilson Kimeli Naiyomah. Thomas Gonzalez's stunning and expansive illustrations capture the African setting and communicate the power of community. 14 Cows for Americaoffers a deep perspective on what it means to have a lot.

Choice Words

Peter Johnston's tremendous book, Choice Words: How Our Language Affects Children's Learning, is quickly becoming a classic. It is simply the very best book to read if you want to reflect deeply on what you say and how you say it. Caution: This book can change the way you think!

Click here to view this book in Amazon +
Click here to view this book in Amazon +

The Power of Our Words

The Power of Our Words: Teacher Language That Helps Children Learn is a more accessible alternative toChoice Words. If you are just beginning to explore the ways your language influences student learning (among other things), you may want to read this book first. The Power of Our Wordscan gently initiate paradigm shifts around language.

I Love Words

A children's activity book for collecting, exploring, and celebrating words, I Love Words by Francoize Boucher is the perfect replacement for purposeless vocabulary workbooks. The pages are filled with open-ended word investigations for children. The word is: Fun!

Click here to view this book in Amazon +
Click here to view this book in Amazon +

Reading the OED

If you haven't found time to read all 20 volumes of the Oxford English Dictionary, you can mark it off your reading list because Ammon Shea has done it for you. In Reading the OED: One Man, One Year, 21,730 Pages,Shea alphabetically presents his favorite words. This book is sure to "happify" the word lover in you!

The Phantom Tollbooth

Milo's journey to Dictionopolis in Norton Juster'sThe Phantom Tolboothis a classic adventure in words. Milo visits the Word Market and sets off to rescue Rhyme and Reason, twin princesses.This book plays with words from cover to cover.

Click here to view this book in Amazon +
Click here to view this book in Amazon +

The Boy Who Loved Words

Like Max in Max's Words, Selig in The Boy Who Loved Words is a word collector. Selig finds that his words help him help others, such as a poet struggling for the right word. Roni Schotter's lyrical text is a warm companion to the folk art illustrations of Giselle Potter.

Max's Words

When Max's brothers won't share their collections of stamps and coins with him, he decides to collect words. His collection becomes extensive and he assembles his words into stories. The marvelous and whimsical illustrations uniquely support the words, in much the same spirit as Literacyhead's Visual Vocabulary.

Click here to view this book in Amazon +
Click here to view this book in Amazon +

The Amazing Bone

To expand student vocabulary, read aloud anything by William Steig. TheAmazing Boneis less familiar to most than Sylvester and the Magic Pebble, but Steig's books are equal-opportunity vocabulary builders and engaging for students even into high school.