Thursday, April 26, 2012

Books, Books, Books

This week we have been reading these books:

Continuing with M's interest in everything garbage-related, we got just about every garbage truck book from the library. This particular book is very basic. It just relays the basic facts of what a garbage truck does. But the pictures are great, so M just flips through it on his own. We are re-reading Smash! Mash! Crash! There goes the trash! and a few other garbage books I already mentioned.

As for books not related (or at least not totally related) to garbage, we've found the absolutely wonderful Wendel's Workshop by Chris Riddell. M loved-loved-loved the book. The story is so simple, but humorous. The illustrations are wonderful. It's about an inventor mouse, a bunch of junkbots, a messy room and yes, about trash too. After re-reading this book several times, M took it into his "workshop" (our family room) and started inventing and drawing blueprints.

Funny story about this book. When I read it the first time, we got to the point where it talks about how sometimes Wendel was so busy inventing, that he forgot to go to bed at night. Right away M asked me "Does Wendel have a mommy? Isn't he a baby mouse?" I said, sure, he had a mom. "So how come he gets to stay up late and work at night?" asked M. Hmm...

I try, whenever possible, to add books about things other than robots, space, and garbage trucks to our reading "diet". Sometimes M flatly refuses to even look through them. Other times, as with this book, he seems interested. I only read it to him once, but it was a very nice experience. The irony of this book was that the only experiences that were foreign to M had to do with the pages where Polina (the Russian girl from the book) went to school. The rest of it - having blini or porridge for breakfast, playing ladushki game, drinking tea around a samovar, etc was all too familiar. The coolest part of reading this book was when I pointed out to a photo of the children writing Russian words on a blackboard and M could read the word!

Grandpa is going to Russia for a month or so and M's been talking about wanting to go to Russia too. So this book was a very timely read for us. And then M asked me to find some YouTube videos of Russian garbage trucks :)

I couldn't believe my luck when I found this book at the library sale a few weeks ago. It was only $0.50 and I snagged it right away. The poems in this book are so funny and the illustrations are even funnier. We've been reading it at bed time for the last few days. M's favorite poems from this book are Веселая квампания and Мёдопровод.

Our other Russian-language book this week has been fairy tales by Korney Chukovsky. I love them and remember many by heart. I started reading them to M when he wasn't even a year old. But then we took a long break from these charming stories, except the one about Barmaley which he'd ask me to read to him now and then. But earlier in the week we re-read the entire book and for the first time M seemed to be really interested in all, even in Dr Aibolit. Maybe we'll return to them after a few more days with the Merry Company.


  1. Russian City book looks interesting. After traveling with daughter to Germany (my husband is German) when she was 20 months old, I swore off international trip until she is way older. She has to visit the sites virtually for the time being. I also remember some Chukovsky books.

    1. I completely agree with you on the international travel with young children. I think that at this point my son is old enough for us to go to Russia (maybe next year). Although maybe we'll got some place in Europe instead. Lately M watched a Dutch video about recycling plastic (didn't seem to bother him that he didn't understand a word of it) and now he wants to go to Rotterdam :)