Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Books Are Like Bees

"Books are the bees which carry the quickening pollen from one to another mind."
 James Russell Lowell

If books are like bees, then our house is like a giant hive. We have books everywhere--on every flat surface of our house (along with laundry, junk mail, and lego)--and I suspect we have half of our library's collection on our shelves.

Since we don't follow a pre-designed homeschool curriculum, we let the books we love, and the ones we come to love, drive what we study. In the process, my kids have learned to appreciate the artistry of children's book illustrations and the importance of a good story.

I was really thrilled when I found this at the library this week: Illustrating Children's Picture Books by Steven Withrow and Lesley Breen Withrow. It includes some beautiful illustrations and interviews with successful illustrators. Since I'm not an illustrator, but I appreciate good book art, I liked the tutorials that I can use later on to show my children how the illustrations are made and how they work.

Another book that we found during our last trip to the library (it's like treasure hunting!), was 1 2 3 I can Build! by Irene Luxbacher.

We've already tried a few crafts ideas from this book, and while they were a little challenging for my six year old, it was something fun we could do together.  We also had everything we needed on hand to craft a paper house (including images from magazines), so it was an instantly gratifying, affordable project.

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