Wheaton Montessori News
Each month we like to share a list of books that parents and children might find interesting and relevant. This month we take a look at a special collection that supports the work done in Montessori classrooms. Whether it is with the goal of celebrating diversity, encouraging peace, thinking about conflict resolution, or texts that are directly related to content in the elementary classroom, this list has it all. Check out a few and let us know what other favorites you have discovered!
Global Babies, The Global Fund for Children
This simple book is filled with beautiful photographs depicting the diverse cultures of babies around the world. Flipping through the pages, it is easy to see how much each baby is loved, how different their worlds are, but how similar they are just the same.
Everywhere Babies, by Susan Meyers, illustrated by Marla Frazee
Everywhere Babies is another charming little book about the similarities and diversity of babies. Babies all eat, move, and learn, but how they go about doing so might look a little different. Babies are loved by many different kinds of families, and they all love to make noise!
The Peace Book, by Todd Parr
“Peace is keeping the water blue for all the fish. Peace is listening to different kinds of music. Peace is saying sorry when you hurt someone.” Parr’s bright and inviting illustrations take readers on a journey to explore the many meanings of peace.
Whoever You Are, by Mem Fox, illustrated by Leslie Staub
This is another great book that takes readers on a journey to meet children all over the world. We may have different skin colors, go to different schools, and speak different languages, but we are all the same inside. Celebrated children’s author Mem Fox (Where is the Green Sheep?) asks us to celebrate our differences while honoring the ways in which we are the same.
Around the World From a to z, by Christinia Cheung and Han Tran, illustrated by Tong Wu
This amazing pick combines the fun of an alphabet book with the wonder of a geography book. What’s even better? The authors and illustrator have chose to incorporate the Montessori cursive moveable alphabet and the Montessori maps into the text and pictures. If your child has already been in a Montessori classroom they will delight in recognizing these similar images. If they are about to enter a Montessori school for the first time this is a fun introduction!
Miss Rhonda’s Readers, by Rhonda Lucadamo, illustrated by Heidi Whethersby and Jennifer Willhoite
Lucadamo, a Montessori teacher, originally created these beginning readers to be used in the classroom. Their simple text, sweet illustrations, and fun plots make them ideal for young children. Start with set one, but know there are two other sets if you and your family enjoy the first!
Born with a Bang: The Universe Tells Our Cosmic Story, by Jennifer Morgan, illustrated by Dana Lynne Andersen
Montessori’s elementary curriculum, also known as cosmic education, uses what are often referred to as the five “Great Lessons” as an impressionistic springboard for its different units of study. The first great lesson is about the birth of our universe. Morgan’s book supports this lesson beautifully. It has been so well-loved, in fact, that one Montessori company (Waseca Biomes) has created a set of materials that are used in classrooms around the world and include illustrations from this book.
From Lava to Life: The Universe Tells Our Earth Story, by Jennifer Morgan, illustrated by Dana Lynne Andersen
Morgan and Andersen created this second book to explain the beginnings of life on earth. Yet again a perfect compliment to another Montessori great lesson, it was inspired by the work of Charles Darwin, Thomas Berry, and Brian Swimme. It encourages a sense of the interconnectedness of all living things on our planet, including humans.
Mammals Who Morph: The Earth Tells our Evolution Story, by Jennifer Morgan, illustrated by Dana Lynne Andersen
The final installment in Morgan and Lynne’s trilogy, this book delves into the fascinating study of the evolution of mammals. Of course, the most exciting part for many of us is the coming of humans and how we have changed over time. As with the other two books in the series, timelines are included across the pages to provide concrete historical information.