Monday, June 28, 2010

The Games Book

The Games Book
By Huw Davies
Published by Scholastic Canada
Reviewed by Martha Beach

Get in touch with children's games of yesteryear and crack open this collection of traditional indoor and outdoor games. There are no batteries required for these games!

It's a classic, traditional book full to the brim with class, traditional games for kids of all ages. These nostalgic games have been enjoyed by generations of children, their parents, and their grandparents.

The games are packaged into a cute, hardcover book with simple black and white drawings and plain pages. Each game includes full instructions so they're easy to learn and fun to play.

Included in this text are spooky games like Wink Murder, classics such as jacks, marbles, Hide and Seek, and of course card games like gun rummy and much more.

Perfect for any season, The Games Book will keep your students occupied all year long.

Remember to check out TEACH Mag for the latest in education.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The English Garden at Night

The English Garden at Night
By Linda Rutenberg and Christopher Woodward
Published by Verve Editions
Reviewed by Lisa Tran

The English Garden at Night will take you on a midnight tour like no other through some of England's most magnificent gardens.

The book is the perfect accompaniment for anyone who has ever wandered through a lush garden during the day and wondered what it may look like come nightfall.

Your journey begins after midnight, long after the tours have ended. Photographer Linda Rutenberg captures the shimmering flowers, trees, and fountains that are normally veiled under the darkness of the night. The moonlight gives the sleeping plants a special glow and carefully frames their stillness, mystery, and soliloquy of shadows.

Christopher Woodward, Director of the Museum of Garden History, introduces us to the gardens in an eloquent essay and the beautiful photographs are preceded by intimate introductions penned by those who know the gardens best.

Remember to check out TEACH Mag for the latest in education.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sun and Storms

Sun and Storms: Canadian Summer Weather
By Nicole Mortillaro
Ages 6-9
Published by Scholastic Canada
Reviewed by Martha Beach

Sun and Storms is the perfect book for young meteorologists. It's a great introductory book for students who wish to learn about how weather affects their own lives.

This easy-to-understand book explains simple weather concepts that relate to Canadian summers. With this text, younger students can learn how rain is formed and why things like tornadoes and thunderstorms happen.

The text includes simple weather concepts, colour photographs, clear diagrams, a glossary, and a table of contents. It is simple to follow and perfect for classroom use because it is directly related to school curriculum.

This particular title launched the Canada Close Up series, which is a non-fiction children series for today's young students. Entertaining, informative and educational, Sun and Storms: Canadian Summer Weather is a text for curious, young, summer minds.

Remember to check out TEACH Mag for the latest in education.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

An Illustrated History of Canada's Native People

An Illustrated History of Canada's Native People:
I have Lived Here Since the World Began

By Arthur J. Ray
Published by Key Porter Books
Reviewed by Martha Beach and Lisa Tran

This illustrated text chronicles the history of Canada's Native People, from their first contact with settlers to their current land claims. The book includes many black and white photographs, aboriginal paintings, and maps throughout the text to help enhance the reader's understanding of native history.

Canada's Natives have lived on the land since the Ice Age and were accomplished traders, artisans, farmers and hunters long before the first Europeans reached the shores. The contact between Aboriginals and European explorers was, at first, a period of growth and opportunity. But the extremely different cultures soon clashed.

From the Native People's settlement in Canada 12,000 years ago to the events that we now see on our evening news and in newspapers, An Illustrated History of Canada's Native People is a text that encapsulates the detailed history of one of our founding groups of people.

Remember to check out TEACH Mag for the latest in education.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The City Man

The City Man
By Howard Akler
Published by Coach House Books
Reviewed by Martha Beach

The City Man is a fast-paced novel filled with crime and passion that centers on the unexpected romance between a broken-down journalist and a pickpocket criminal.

The story starts with Eli Morenz, the city-man journalist for the Star, who is covering an event at City Hall. In the crowd is a pickpocket, Mona Kantor, who finds many easy pickings among the mass crowd at City Hall. Using a stealthy photo and some good research, Eli discovers the pickpocket ring and is lead to the underworld convergence of pickpockets in Kensington Market - and to the discovery of Mona.

Eli and Mona's romance is unusual and unexpected. It begins in an instant and careens quickly towards risk, as Eli delves deeper into the world of criminals and Mona tries to keep him on the outskirts of the world she grew up in.

Set in 1934 Toronto, the story's setting moves between a hectic newsroom, the bustle of Union station, and the secret meeting-place of pickpockets.

The City Man
's evocation of a lost Toronto has been compared to Michael Ondaatje's In the Skin of a Lion.

It's a high-speed crime and romance novel, filled with arcane period slang: a terrific read, but not for the faint of heart.

Remember to check out TEACH Mag for the latest in education.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Soccer Book

The Soccer Book
By David Goldblatt and Johnny Acton
Published by DK
Reviewed by Martha Beach

Get ready for the World Cup! The Soccer Book is a visual guide to the game of soccer. It includes a huge amount of information on rules, the set-up and position of players on the field as well as different countries’ players, clothing, equipment, and much more.

The book is easy-to-read and includes many colour graphics and photos to help readers understand rules of the game and core details, such as player placements and what their job is on the field. There are descriptions of different play-strategies as well as overview-graphics of fields and each player’s position.

Also, there is a section that describes the history of the game and another section that showcases different players and their skills. Plus, mixed in throughout the text are interesting facts, like average distance travelled by a player during a game, and different statistics, like the goals conceded per match, per country, in past world-cup games.
With this book as your guide, the World Cup will be a cinch to understand, follow, and appreciate.

Remember to check out TEACH Mag for the latest in education.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Wildflowers of Fogo Island and Change Islands

Wildflowers of Fogo Island and Change Islands
By Todd Boland
Published by Key Porter Books
Reviewed by Martha Beach

Wildflowers of Fogo Island and Change Islands is the perfect book for nature enthusiasts and vacation-lovers who are lacking the funds to go very far from home this summer.

Be prepared to take an adventure through the heart of floral beauty in Newfoundland and Labrador. This book will take you closer than you've ever been before to the colours, textures, and fragrances of the province's shores.


Fogo Island and Change Islands hold the majority of the province's unique and natural wonders. The environment is a horticulturalists' dream, which has amazing plants from coniferous plants like juniper, to exotic varieties of herbaceous flowers.

The islands have more than 200 native species of plant life and
Wildflowers neatly organizes each one, along with a wealth of information and detailed images. This book is a guide that explains each plant's habitat, characteristics, and common names. It even provides information on historical, medicinal, and culinary uses.

So to get away from home for a bit, crack open this book, and explore the natural world of Newfoundland and Labrador's Fogo Island and Change Islands.

Remember to check out TEACH Mag for the latest in education.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Igniting a Passion for Reading

Hello everyone,

School's out! But TEACH Magazine will be here all summer-long with our Summer Book Bag. For all of you who are not quite off “teacher mode” here's a great resource to get you started on a great summer of reading.

Igniting a Passion for Reading:
Successful Strategies for Building Lifetime Readers
By Steven L. Layne
Published by Stenhouse Publishers
Reviewed By Lisa Tran

Igniting a Passion for Reading shows teachers how to develop readers who are not only motivated to read, but also love reading in its own right.

From book shopping and buzz topics to reading lounges, this book will help teachers create a vibrant reading culture in their schools. The book also includes reminiscences from many of today's well-known children's and young adult authors - Mem Fox, Sharon Draper, Steven Kellogg, Candace Fleming, Eric Rohman, Neal Shusterman, and Joan Bauer.

Ignite a passion for reading within your students today with these tips and anecdotes.

Remember to check out TEACH Mag for the latest in education.