Hanukkah

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
11/01/2013
PreS-Gr 2—This set offers concise historical information and an unbiased evaluation of the cultural significance of holidays. Every aspect of this series seems perfectly tailored to Common Core classrooms that strive to make nonfiction exciting. Clever chapter headings, such as "Meet a Furry Forecaster!" in Groundhog Day, draw students in. "Fast Fact!" text boxes and photo captions will grab their attention while providing additional information. Reproductions and gorgeous, glossy color photos will spark conversations. For example, one photo shows a woman holding an enormous groundhog aloft. Calendars invite numerical and spatial learning, and the arts-and-crafts projects will help readers synthesize facts. Even the tables of contents and glossaries are visually dynamic. Not a single inch of page space is wasted (e.g., page numbers are presented inside icons in the shape of the holiday's symbol, such as a groundhog, heart or dreidel). Students will appreciate and be entertained by discovering new details with each read.
Children's Literature - Lois Rubin Gross
Most Hanukkah books suffer from the same problem as the holiday itself. They are trying too hard to make Jewish children feel that Hanukkah is an equivalent holiday to Christmas. In its very simplicity aimed at early readers, this Hanukkah book achieves what the more elaborate books do not: it tells the story of the holiday in short, succinct phrases and does not elaborate on the celebration beyond its actual practice. Aimed at early readers, the print font is big and clear with relatively accessible language for young children or adults sharing the book with young children. Of course, the vocabulary of the holiday gives the reader multi-syllable words that will take an adult's intervention to break into easier "bites." The words are defined within the text of the book, with only a very brief glossary in the back. There is a table of contents that essentially identifies the major parts of the book: the holiday, the history, the observation, and the celebration. Illustrations are photographs related to the text without a common look. There are "Fast Fact bubbles" that provide trivia, such as the fact that the Hanukkah menorah is actually called a "hanukkiyah." The emphasis is not on the eight days of presents, although they are mentioned, but on the very basic meaning and practice of the holiday. Back matter includes some very easy crafts, the aforementioned glossary, a comprehension test, index, and a website connection. This is exactly the book that parents of pre-schools, pre-school teachers, and very young readers need to understand the real meaning of Hanukkah. Reviewer: Lois Rubin Gross
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780531273517
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/1/2013
  • Series: Rookie Read-About Holidays Series
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 591,551
  • Age range: 3 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 6.80 (h) x 0.10 (d)

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