There are twenty countries represented in this multicultural resource for educators. Each section is similar to a condensed encyclopedia entry, containing information on the country's history, government, languages, and arts and sciences. In addition, a short, traditional folktale and several simple recipes are included for each country. There are also various activities in different school subjects such as reading, math, social studies, and drama. Each chapter also includes suggested readings. A lengthy index and a bibliography are listed at the end of the book. Although this resource is well organized and covers a variety of information about each country, it has some limitations for the young adult audience. The single illustration at the beginning of each chapter is very simplistic, and the tale representing each country seems too immature for most teens. There are some activities, such as performing a scene from a George Bernard Shaw play for the Ireland chapter, that could be used by older middle school students. The majority, however, are short and simple tasks such as converting the acreage of the Vatican City into another measurement. Each section provides an interesting collection of facts, however, including information on recreation, food, and customs and traditions. The book would serve as a fine choice for educators of students ranging from grades four through seven, but supplemental material would be needed for those serving older students. Index. Illus. Biblio. Further Reading. 2000, Fulcrum, 262p, Oversize pb. Ages Adult. Reviewer: Elizabeth Prior SOURCE: VOYA, April 2001 (Vol. 24, No.1)
To appreciate America's richness we must know something about the different immigrant groups that comprise American society. This handy reference book covers twenty countries as representatives of the numerous nationalities that sought refuge and riches on American soil. Major immigrant groups from the turn of the century, such as the Irish, Italians, Polish and Russians, are presented along with more recent immigrants, such as the Vietnamese, Cubans and the Mexicans. Each chapter covers a specific country in depth and includes a folktale, an ethnic recipe and a wealth of background information. Teachers, students and librarians can use this source to look up the history, the government, the religion, the language, the food and the traditions of each featured country. Immigration patterns, reasons and numbers are also provided for each ethnic group. Holidays celebrated by each nationality, such as the French Bastille Day, are discussed. Teachers will appreciate each section's list of creative classroom activities in the areas of math, vocabulary, reading, writing, geography and more. Bibliographies on each country provide useful sources for further research. Immigration is a regular part of the school curriculum. This highly readable and informative book is an excellent resource for the classroom and school library. 2000, Fulcrum, $19.95. Ages 12 up. Reviewer: Jackie Hechtkopf
Social studies or language arts teachers looking to expand their students' horizons will appreciate the well-organized information here, consisting of legends from around the world organized by country, with background information on each nation and suggested activities. The 20 countries covered include China, Cuba, India, France, Hungary, the Philippines, Mexico, Japan, Senegal, Russia, Vietnam and more. Each legend (one per country) is illustrated with a b/w line drawing, and followed by a capsule description of the country and brief discussions of its history, government, religion, language, education, immigrants, language, the arts and science, food (with a recipe), recreation, and culture and traditions. Suggested activities include ideas for writing, math, social studies, cooking, art, and more, and there are bibliographies for each nation. The legends provide a nice way to introduce different cultures to students in grades 4-8, and teachers will find the resources and suggested projects helpful in lesson planning. 2000, Fulcrum, 262p, illus, bibliogs, index, 28cm, 99-085965, $19.95. Ages Adult. Reviewer: Paula Rohrlick; September 2000 (Vol. 34 No. 5)
A winner of the Governor's Award for Excellence in Education, Dr. Phyllis Perry is a former educator who now devotes her time to writing for teachers and children. The author of more than three dozen books, she also writes for numerous magazines, including a regular book column in Lollipops.