Tuesday, June 07, 2011

"Postcard" From New Zealand

On Saturday we received our first "postcard" from New Zealand. Actually, it was an impressive packet from a homeschooling family. (Now I feel a little guilty about only sending a postcard!) There was indeed a hand drawn postcard from a 6-yr-old boy of the sun and Mercury's orbit.

The packet described many cool projects that the family works on, complete with pictures. Photos of robots they have built, as well as prehistoric animals such as Arthropleura and Opibinia constructed out of recycled materials. You can see some videos of their robots and other projects at Chaos - It's Not Just a Theory. Rounding it off was a booklet of the boy's drawings of bugs.

Ahh, but this was meant to have book suggestions, was it not? Fear not, there were 2.5 pages of book covers to peruse. And here is the list:

The Mousehole Cat by Antonia Barber
Dinothesaurus: Prehistoric Poems and Paintings by Douglas Florian
Amos & Boris by William Steig
Moonshot: The Flight of Apollo 11 by Brian Floca
Finn Family Moomintroll by Tove Jansson
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
A Collection of Rudyard Kipling's Just So Stories
Olive, the Other Reindeer by J. Otto Seibold
Comets, Stars, The Moon, And Mars: Space Poems and Paintings
Babar Visits Another Planet by Laurent de Brunhoff
Tawny Scrawny Lion by Gustaf Tenggren
The Secret Staircase by Jill Barklem
Bob Books by Bobby Lynn Maslen

And one Australian book: For The Love of Vincent by Brenda V. Northeast

A nicely varied list, I have to say. Interestingly, I had been thinking of looking for an illustrated version of the "Just So Stories," so that's a nice place to start. And I had no idea that Babar ever visited another planet.

I wonder what will show up next?

This entry is cross-posted here at Dreamwidth.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

International Postcard Swap

I am participating in this year's international postcard swap run by the children's lit blog Playing by the Book:

The idea is to swap children's book recommendations with families who have children roughly the same age as your own. I sent post cards to families in Germany, Australia, Chile, the UK, and Texas. Being from Boston myself, I went out and bought postcards with a picture of the duckling statues in the Public Gardens from Robert McCloskey's classic Make Way For Ducklings:

But then it got interesting - how does one choose books to recommend to families in another country? I decided that the books/authors I chose should be fairly popular here in the US, but not old standards/classics. The really classic books here in the US may already be old hat even in other countries. But there needed to be some hope of the families being able to check out these books if they were interested in doing so.

For the family in Germany, I lucked out. I wanted to recommend Mo Willem's Knuffle Bunny (or any Mo Willems really) to their oldest child. When I checked online, I discovered it had been published in Germany just this past January as Knuffelhase:

Now I await my 5 postcards from around the world.

If you were choosing books to recommend internationally how would you choose? Or, alternately, which books would you choose for international families with children from 0-4 (the range I had)?

This entry is cross-posted here at Dreamwidth.