Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Reading the Library: First Post

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته

Alhamdulillaah! We have been blessed to fast another Ramadan. May Allaah grant us many more in which we draw closer to Him, seek His Forgiveness and increase in our worship to Him. And Eid Mubarak!

In this, the first Reading the Library post, I will briefly outline the structure and content of all future posts and do the first book review as well insha'Allaah. In an attempt to keep this as simple and straightforward as possible insha'Allaah, the following elements will be included in Reading the Library posts:
  • The post titles will appear as: RTL: {Name of the book}
  • Book Title
  • Author
  • Is the book Islamically appropriate
  • Genre (for a description of the characteristics of the different genres click here insha'Allaah)
  • Book Format (i.e. picture book, board book)
  • Book Review
  • A picture of the book's cover
  • And a relevant art/craft activity link (if I am aware of one)
I will most likely add two more labels that will accompany these posts and they are: fiction and non-fiction. This is to help with lesson planning insha'Allaah.If I am aware of any activities that are fun and appropriate to go with a book that has been reviewed, I will link to that activity in the post as well insha'Allaah.

If you would like to submit a book that you would either like reviewed or think is a great read aloud for birth to five year olds and is Islamically appropriate, please do leave a comment mentioning the name of the book and the author. Please understand that it may happen that I may list the book as not recommended and if this happens I will list the reason(s) why. I will, insha'Allaah, err on the side of caution and if there are areas which present themselves as grey, I will most likely not recommend the book just to be safe insha'Allaah. My reasoning for this are the ahadith wherein the Prophet (sallaallaahu alayhi wa salam) advised his ummah to stay away from that which is doubtful. If a book is listed as not Islamically appropriate, in the review I will list the specific reasons (what the text says or what the illustration depicts) in bold print insha'Allaah.

Now, on to our first read from the library insha'Allaah:

Book Title: I Like Toys
Author: Lorena Siminovich
Islamically Appropriate?: Yes
Genre: Fiction
Book Format: Board Book
Age Group: 1-3
Book Review:Like the other books in this series, I like fruit and I like bugs, I like toys is an interactive joy for infants and young toddlers. Done with collage, the illustrations are appealing and textually inviting for young fingers. Each page presents a toy, its name and a part of the toy that the child can touch and experience a tactile interaction with. In addition to these features, the child is also shown the shapes that are to be found in each of the toys. So, a sailboat has triangles in it and a robot has squares and rectangles. Simple, sturdy and nicely illustrated, I like toys is a book infants and young toddlers may enjoy hearing read aloud or simply exploring on their own.

Until the next read insha'Allaah....

Monday, August 22, 2011

Storytime: Mommy, Carry Me Please!

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته

Mommy, Carry Me Please! by Jane Cabrera is a sweet story that infants and young toddlers may enjoy having read to them. A sturdy board book, each page features wonderful illustrations that depict how and where different animal babies are carried by their mothers. The story ends with a human child asking his mother to not only carry him, but to hug him in her arms. A hug: one of the many nice ways to end a story.

Friday, August 19, 2011

New School Year Reading Goal

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته

After concluding my summer teacher reading (which can include professional books, teacher resource books and children's books), I've decided to undertake a project that, in theory, sounds quite easy....I've decided to try to read all of the books in the childrens section of the library that do not obviously contain ideas and beliefs contrary to Islaam. I've decided to do this because I'd like to have a handy resource notebook that lists books by age, genre, author, etc. that are appropriate to read aloud to Muslim children from birth to Grade 1 insha'Allaah. I'm hoping this will save time when planning storytimes and other literacy activities.

On average, it may be that preschool/kindergarten/grade 1 teachers easily read more than 100 pictures books a year...waallaahu a'lam. Whatever the number, I hope to complete this goal before the end of the school year and as I go, I'll post each book I've read here on the blog with a review. 

In the review I'll first mention if the book is Islamically appropriate or not then I will move on to listing the age category of the book, genre, and then give a small review of the book. Each post will be under the label: Reading the Library, making them easy to find insha'Allaah.

Library card in hand....I'm off to read the library insha'Allaah!