Okay, "word books" don't sound like the most exciting thing ever. They aren't storybooks, they don't have dialogue, and they teach words. But these are seriously some of the coolest books in our collection. Yes, they teach words. But they do so with style, entertainment, and lavish illustrations that even adults are attracted to (and let's face it, if adults don't like the books, why do we assume kids will?).
Word books are exactly what they sound like—books about words. For those who love words to begin with there's nothing odd or off-putting about this, but for the less literarily-inclined it probably sounds pretty dull and awful. That's why the word books we carry are so great: they combine text and pictures in a way everyone can enjoy them.
They're also *gasp* educational. Some are basic (Richard Scarry's visually engaging books come to mind), simply pairing words like "car" and "grapes" and "mailbox" with corresponding drawings of the same; others, like those by Ruth Heller, are more advanced, teaching specific kinds of words like adjectives and prepositions.
These aren't for older students (even the Ruth Heller titles). These are for kids still learning about words, still forming their own vocabularies, still trying to grasp the relationships between the spoken realm and the world around them. Words don't have to be a chore—and if you start your kids on the path to loving them with books like these, it's a pretty fair bet they never will be.
Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he is a husband and father, teaches adult Sunday school in his Presbyterian congregation, and likes weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur.Read more of his reviews here.
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