Friday, 31 July 2015

Top 100 - As voted by New Zealander

2014 Top 100 List

Want to know what the top 100 books are, as voted by the readers of New Zealand.  Check out the whitcoulls top 100.  New Zealander's have had their vote and here we have the results. 

Click this link to take a look and start reading.;pgid=XrtAy_mHgzBSRpclJ2ymfgT80000RZDpgKni?CategoryName=top100&CategoryDomainName=Whitcoulls-Shop-toplistings

Happy reading!

Friday, 24 July 2015

Winnie: The true story of the bear who inspired Winnie-the-Pooh

Winnie: The true story of the bear who inspired Winnie-the-Pooh
Author: Sally M. Walker
ISBN: 978-0-8050-9715-3

Winnie: The True Story of the Bear Who Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh
The remarkable tale of a real bear - and a soldier who cared for her.
Hi everyone, this book is a must have for all the Winnie-the-Pooh fans out there.  I never thought about where Winnie-the-pooh developed from.  I just thought it was story like any other; formed from someones imagination.  Well it is, really.  A boy named Christopher Robin was told stories by his dad, and these became the Winnie-the-Pooh books. 
But what was the inspiration?  Winnie the bear!  He was found at a train station and continued with the soldier, Harry, who picked him up.  This is their story, written into the most beautiful picture book.  At the front and back of the book are photos each with captions presenting a little history in itself.  Then at the end of the story is the Author's note that gives the dates and history of Harry Colebourn and the black bear named Winnie. 
I delighted in this book. I loved the history, the photos at the front and back, and the story that told of a bear and a soldier that bought joy to an army regiment.  My kids have grown up with Winnie-the-Pooh and now they can read of the inspiration that developed into the books they loved at bedtime.
This was available from: Book depository and Amazon

Friday, 17 July 2015

Peter and the starcatchers


Peter and the starcatchers
Authors: Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson
ISBN: 978-1-4063-5182-8
Pages: 963

Peter and the Starcatchers

Hi everyone.  If you want a book to read to your kids, here I have it.  I read this aloud to mine and we were all sorry to hear it end.  There are more books in the series though.  I thought there was three, but looking up who has the book for you all, I have noticed there are now even more.  I have the next two in the series, that I will have to fight my kid for to read... but I will read them and review those also.  The authors  write with description, excitement and a grand sense of humour.  We laughed all the way through.  The action and suspense was also there and kept us reading, but the humour was what grab all of our attention. 
Well, what is this book all about?  Peter before he was Peter Pan.  Ever wondered where it all started?  Pick up this book and find out.  I have grown up with Peter, Wendy and the lost boys.  Now I know all about Peter before there was Neverland.  I know all about Mr Grin, who was the crocodile who ate the pirates watch.  But did he bite the arm off?  One would think so, there is more to that story also.  And just where did Tinker Bell come from?  That may surprise you.
Now if I have your interest, go find a copy.  Any young reader will love you for it.  And while your at it, have a little read yourself, you will enjoy the beginning of the story that you grown up with.
This was available from: Book depository, Fishpond and Amazon

Saturday, 11 July 2015

What learning looks like


What Learning Looks Like: Mediated Learning in Theory and Practice, K-6
Authors: Reuben Feuerstein/Ann Lewin-Beham
ISBN: 978-0-8077-5326-2
Pages: 219
What Learning Looks Like
Reuven Feuerstein's theories, and techniques are incorporated into this wonderful book.  It outlines Feuerstein's insights into how children learn.  It was the way Feuernstein incorporates mediated learning into the learning process that caught my eye and made me pick up this book.  There are many theories on teaching and learning, many of which I have studied over the past few years.  All have their credits,and when intertwined, the teaching and learning process, can achieve new levels.  What I liked about Feuerstein is his idea of interchange and mediation between teacher and student.
This book explains Feuernsteins principles and gives example after example of how how to teach using his principles.  The chapters include:
  • Introduction
  • Learning through mediation
  • The mediated learning experience defined
  • Mediated learning in action expert mediators
  • Four essential cognitive acts
  • Defining the effectiveness of learning experiences
  • Creative use of effective exhibits
  • More essential cognitive acts
  • Blue Sky partnerships
  • Enlarging the cognitive repertoire
  • Stretching the brain to make learning happen
  • After words
One thing I give credit to, with the writing of this book, is the readabilty of its contents.  Many books on education are written in an extremely academic voice.  I found this book was voiced for any teacher or parent that wants to help children learn. 
For anyone interested in teaching through mediation and interaction with the students, this book presents ideas and theory that will hopefully inspire you.  Through interaction students and question and learn... and even shine.
This was available from:  Book depository, Fishpond and Amazon

Thursday, 2 July 2015

The Golden Acorn

The Golden Acorn
Author: Catherine Helen Cooper
ISBN: 9781906821708

The Golden Acorn
My son reading this now and really enjoying it.  As I was finishing it, I struggled not to spoil it for him.  I so wanted to say what was happening but he wouldn't let me! 
So, it's obvious that this is a good read.  Especially for boys, but my daughter is wanting to read it too.  It is about a boy, Jack Brenin who has to go live with his grandfather.  He meets up with the wrong boys and gets bullied, not a good start to a new town.  While running from the boys he hides in a hedge and ends up in a garden that leads him into a whole new world.  He finds a golden acorn and has to protect it and enters a world of  thrilling and magical adventure.  He meets the mischievous spriggens, talking ravens, and learns to fly. 
He is transported back in time to collect plates to save his friends.  This sets the scene for the next 4 books that follow in the series.  I read this on my Kindle and by doing this I was able to click on words like 'Londinium' and find the history of London in the Wikipedia.  The author has managed to weave a little history into the action of this adventure.  I really liked this.  As I found things out, my son and I talked about my findings.  This lead to quite a conversation when his father got home.  I think he liked knowing something the adults didn't.
I am going to get the rest of this series.  It's not too hard to read and had plenty of suspense to keep my boy reading... and me.
Looking this up... this book is free today in kindle format from Amazon:
This was available from: Fishpond, Amazon and Book depository