Special Edition: Books by Tara

In this special edition post, I bring you Books by Tara. Though intially created by Tara to aid in the education of her son, who is on the autism spectrum, these books can be used by children of all ages and ability levels. I had the opportunity to review two of her fall themed books, Autumn Leaves and Jack-O-Lantern.

Jack-O-Lantern
As with Autumn Leaves, the first thing you notice in this book are the amazing photographs. Bright, colorful, cheerful! I really like the fact that real photographs are used in these books. Jack-O-Lantern is not a wordless picture book. Instead, Tara, in photographs and short rhyming text, shows us the steps for making a jack-o-lantern, starting at the pumpkin patch and ending on the front porch.
Preschool to Primary Level
This book is a great resource to build background knowledge in a preschooler. If teachers take children on a field trip to the pumpkin patch, this book is a great lead-in to that trip. Or, it’s a perfect read-aloud upon return from the pumpkin patch. What are we going to do with our pumpkin now? Let’s read and find out! It’s also a great resource to show how procedures work. After reading aloud this book, teachers of primary grade students may want to create a class book (a shared writing experience) showing procedures of particular activities in the classroom. Students can even use a digital camera to take photographs for the book! What a fantastic resource to have in the room when new students arrive.
Elementary Level
Jack-O-Lantern is a good resource to read aloud to students when discussing procedural writing in the upper elementary grades. While the text is not actually written in procedural form, the photographs demonstrate the order of a procedure. Students can use the photographs to write a procedure for creating a Jack-O-Lantern using procedural words, such as first, second, then, next, etc. Or students can use the photos as a model to write a different procedural piece. Have students take photographs of the steps of a process and create their own procedural book.

Special Edition: Books by Tara

In this special edition post, I bring you Books by Tara. Though initially created by Tara to aid in the education of her son, who is on the autism spectrum, these books can be used by children of all ages and ability levels. I had the opportunity to review two of her fall themed books, Autumn Leaves and Jack-o-Lantern.

Autumn Leaves
The first thing you notice about Autumn Leaves are the amazing photographs. The photos are bright and inviting. There are twenty-one photos of different types of leaves in various stages of the color process. This particular book is a wordless picture book, which I absolutely love. Wordless picture books allow children to develop their own ideas and draw their own conclusions.
Preschool to Primary Level
I think this book is perfect for preschool level children when they discuss autumn. The book provides an opportunity for plenty of discussion about colors, shapes, and sizes. It could be a perfect lead in to a nature walk activity. Teachers and students can take a nature walk and collect fall leaves. Leaves can then be sorted by color, shape, or size. Teachers can even graph the results of the sorts.
Personal Note: I looked at the photos in this book with my three year old, but did not read aloud the title. I asked her a few questions. Here is our conversation:
Me: Do you know what season this book is showing us?
Her: Fall!
Me: How do you know?
Her: Because the leaves are changing colors.
A simple conversation, but it told me that she is aware of seasons and what happens in Fall.
Elementary Level
I love wordless picture books for the child that is writing. They provide a perfect opportunity for children to create their own text based on the pictures. Teachers can use this book to pique children’s curiosity about autumn. A more sophisticated discussion can occur regarding the science of leaves changing colors and the life cycle of a tree. After building up background knowledge for students, teachers can provide students with the opportunity to create their own text for the photos in the book.

Coming tomorrow: Jack-O-Lantern