Taken from a couple of Read-Aloud Thursday blog-posts:
Right now, our current chapter book is Mandy by Julie Andrews Edwards. (Yes, that Julie Andrews)Taken from a couple of Read-Aloud Thursday blog-posts:
Right now, our current chapter book is Mandy by Julie Andrews Edwards. (Yes, that Julie Andrews). This was a favorite childhood book that I recently remembered and rediscovered and N1 chose this for our first read-aloud of 2011. Mandy discovers an abandoned cottage behind the orphanage that is her home and she is consumed with the desire to fix it up and make herself a little secret hideaway. Unfortunately, as you read the story, you find that Mandy employs a few ways of getting things that she needs for her little home by way of lies and "borrowing" items from the orphanage.
"-And besides, I didn't exactly steal the knife," Mandy told herself. "I really only borrowed it for a while. When I earn enough money I can buy one of my own." And so she justified her actions and felt better.
We're still in the first section of the book, but we're all eager to find out what happens to Mandy and her little cottage ... and if the choices that she is making are going to work out for her by the end of the story.
As far as our chapter read aloud, we finished up Mandy yesterday - flying through the last chapters to answer the burning question of whether or not this little orphan girl would be adopted. "They need to just adopt Mandy!" and "Why don't they adopt her?!" was heard frequently from N1 as we pressed on to the end. : ) I loved to see her so invested in the story so we spent a little extra time reading on it the last few days so that we could find out what happened. Just as an FYI for parents, as I read aloud, I did edit out several instances of the Lord's name in vain as well as one mild swear word, however, there is nothing in the book that would keep me from handing it over to N1 in a few years to read on her own. (This book was written with a very British feel to it and the swear word fits in with that style of writing and language, something that can easily be skipped over while reading aloud or even marked out of the book if you are so inclined.) I originally blogged Mandy here if you are interested. ...more
To wind up our summer, I decided that we needed a more frivolous read to give us a break from our trek through Narnia. With Nanny McPhee Returns hittiTo wind up our summer, I decided that we needed a more frivolous read to give us a break from our trek through Narnia. With Nanny McPhee Returns hitting the movie theaters in August, and the original movie set to re-release on DVD in August as well, I decided that would be a good choice for us. (I'm not planning on taking the girls to this one in the theater - we'll wait for DVD - but I am planning a fun family movie night with the first movie hopefully this weekend now that we've finished the book). Anyway...
Nanny McPhee is based upon a book of short stories called The Collected Tales of Nurse Matilda. They were written by Christianna Brand, and illustrated by her brother Edward Ardizzone. These stories were based on ones that their grandmother told her and her siblings when they were young ... the biography I read suggested that these were the stories that grandma told when her grandchildren were being particularly naughty.
In the story, the Brown children come from a large and very unruly family. There are so many children the author doesn't even bother to tell you all their names and ages ... she leaves that to you to figure out as you go through the story, there are that many children. And these children are bad. Really bad. For example:
Francesca had filled the Tiny Baby's bottle with baby-food and was feeding the dogs with it. Little Quentin had drawn flowers all up the nursery walls and was watering them from the big, brown, nursery teapot, Antony was filling up the nursery ink-wells with runny red jam. Nicolas had collected all the Little Ones' dolls and was lining them up for execution. Sophie was shampooing Henrietta's hair with glue. And the other children were doing simply dreadful things too. (p. 24)
The parents are somewhat shockingly blind to the misdeeds of their children and after yet another nanny has left the family, and they are unable to hire anyone to come and help with their children, they turn to Nurse Matilda. Nurse Matilda (or Nanny McPhee as she is called in the movie) is who you turn to when you are desperate. The first thing you notice about her is that she is ugly - she has a nose that looks like two potatoes are stuck together, warts, stiff black hair in a bun, and a tooth that you just can't seem to take your eyes off of. The children figure that they can get rid of Nurse Matilda just like all the other nannies, but it doesn't quite work out that way. For one thing, Nurse Matilda has this big black stick and when she bangs it on the floor unusual things begin to happen. For one, whatever mischief or naughtiness you are currently doing, you find that you can't stop doing, and so on.
The book is made up of three stories about the unpleasant Brown children. The first book centers on their behavior at home, the second on their behavior when they are sent to stay with their Great Aunt Adelaide, and the third when they are taken on a trip to the seaside. By the third book I was finding the story a bit reptitious as the children's antics seemed to take on a "second verse, same as the first" type quality to them, if that makes sense. I don't know if I would encourage everyone to rush out and buy a copy of the book but if you are looking for something light to read with your children, this is good one pick out at the library and try out ... and to feel free to stop after the first or second story. It's one that could be handed off to older elementary student to read as well....more
I LOVE these books about the boy Henry Reed and his summers in rural New Jersey. Absolute favorites from my childhood and ones that I will make sure mI LOVE these books about the boy Henry Reed and his summers in rural New Jersey. Absolute favorites from my childhood and ones that I will make sure my girls read. : )...more
Definitely different from the movie! It has just enough similarity to Disney to make you think you are reading about the same character, but the bookDefinitely different from the movie! It has just enough similarity to Disney to make you think you are reading about the same character, but the book has several more adventures that make it very fun! Will definitely be adding the rest of this series to my library for the girls....more
This book was WONDERFUL! N1 and I sat down to read it yesterday and couldn't put it down. At the end of every chapter, she said, "Just one more!" andThis book was WONDERFUL! N1 and I sat down to read it yesterday and couldn't put it down. At the end of every chapter, she said, "Just one more!" and since the chapters were 3-4 pages, I obliged. The story is about an adventure that the storyteller's father had - the main character never has a name, but is referred to as "my father" the whole time. He sets off on an adventure to Wild Island to rescue a baby dragon. With only his knapsack full of supplies, he manages to get by many and varied wild animals in his quest. First published in 1946, this book has stood the test of time and gets two thumbs up from our house. : ) ...more