Saturday, June 14, 2014

From Bible Stories to Life Stories with Anat Umansky

Genre: Children's Picture Books
Source:  I purchased them.
Every now and then you come across an author who writes quality books with quality messages. When Anat Umansky asked me to check out one of her books I immediately looked it up online. The price was great so I purchased it. Then I began to check out the other books.  Although I did not review every one of her books, I review the majority of them.  These were the ones I thought I would really enjoy.  I hope you will read about them and then go quickly to purchase them. They are well worth it.

Exodus From Egypt

The Biblical story of Moses leading the Hebrews from slavery in Egypt is told in great detail and beautiful pictures in this book.  The author explains the reason the Jewish people celebrate Passover. This is a simple yet great retelling of a most important story.


The Ten Commandments

This was an excellent retelling of the Biblical story of Moses and the Ten Commandments. It stayed true to the word of God. Told in simplest of terms any young child would understand. Excellent job and well worth the read.


Why Did the Leaf Fall

When a young boy observes a leaf fall from a branch he questions why. Each answer he receives leads him to another question. The questions eventually lead back to God who shows the boy how he takes care of the smallest of his creatures. Great story,  great lesson.


Dirty Bumble and Clean Bean

This is the story of two very different dwarfs. Bumble loved to play all day. He and his house were dirty, but he didn’t care because he was busy having fun. Bean was the opposite of Bumble. He was constantly scrubbing and cleaning. He did this all day long and didn’t take time to play. Bumble slept late, didn’t brush his teeth and often had trouble finding his clothes. Bean was always up early. He organized and cleaned everything starting with himself. One day they meet in the woods. They wonder which is right, to be dirty or neat. Bumble introduces himself and talks about how much fun he has getting dirty and playing. Bean introduces himself and explains how important it is he stay clean to be happy and healthy. Both realize they need a balance in their lives, and that there is a time for everything.


How Babies Are Born

Two children, Orly and Lior are talking about where babies come from. They discuss the usual stories they have hear about the stork bringing them or finding the in the cabbage patch. They discuss the possibility of babies growing from plants. Then they begin to question where other animals come from. They decide to ask their parents but they are at work. They can’t ask their grandparents because they are off on a trip. An open book states he will answer their questions. He explains how fish, dogs and kittens are born. Finally he explains in a way children will understand without telling too much how children are made and born.  This is an excellent book for those times when children begin to ask the questions. It is a great way to start that conversation with them.


Don’t Think You Can’t

A crow sees a beautiful tomato and wants to eat it, but is afraid of the wolf. A rabbit comes along and sees the tomato bigger than himself. He too wants to eat it. The crow warns of the wolf. He gives the rabbit advice about how to hide from the wolf while eating the tomato.  The rabbit tries to convince the crow to join him. The crow is too afraid. Soon the tomato is gone and the crow realizes his fear, realistic or not kept him from attempting something he really wanted.


Why  the Giraffe is Crying

Geraldine the Giraffe cries over everything. She reminded me of a two year old throwing tantrums when someone says something she doesn’t like, or when she doesn’t get her way.  Usually she looks into her puddle of tears and sees Croakette the toad who tells her such funny things that she can’t help but laugh. This is a book you must read to find out if Geraldine will ever stop crying.


Go Away Scary Thoughts

A cute story of Dylan who is afraid at night. He fears aliens, monsters and witches. When he is visited by an angel and a fairy he learns what he has to do to keep the scary things away. He learns he must control his own thoughts for this to happen. This would make a great bed-time story to alleviate any fears the child might have.


Wizard Bill’s Secret

What if crocodiles had elephant ears and zebras had pink stripes? In this cute story Bill the wizard visits the zoo after all the people have left,  and grants the wishes of the animals. When daylight returns, the animals return to their normal selves.  The first thing I thought about after reading this book was that this would make a great read to use for creative writing.  Having students write about other things the wizard could do to the animals.  Another writing idea that popped into my head was, what if the sun rose before the wizard could turn them back.  Great mentor text for creative writing possibilities for children.

Mama Bird and Her Chicks

This is a counting book with a wonderful story attached to it.  It has some simple rhyme to it. The story is of one mother bird sitting on her two eggs.  Each time something happens to the birds to move it along then we have another number added to help with the counting.  The storyline is wonderful. It teaches children a little about birds, what they eat and their predators and also teaches them to count to ten. The illustrations are absolutely beautiful and kid friendly.  These will stay on my Kindle so that I can share them with grandchildren.

A Journey Into Imagination

This is another one of my favorites.  I love figurative language and I love to teach it.  I teach sixth grade. That is an age that can be difficult as children try to transition from the younger child to the almost teenager. Finding books that are simple and fun to teach something they might not want to learn is always a challenge.  I've had many books over the years I used to teach figurative language.  However, this one with its beautiful and imaginative pictures is by far my favorite and one I will definitely use in my classroom when I return this year.  It is a way for the child to use their imagination, something many don't know how to use, to learn about figurative language.  Thank you Anat for such a wonderful imagination.

1 comment:

  1. Great write-up! Writing is a talent, and it must not be wasted. As with everything that we had been entrusted, we should

    let it grow and share it with the world.>learner