Part of parenting is embracing the ever-growing opportunity to teach and enlighten. To impart wisdom that will transcend the mind’s eyes and ears for the becoming of the heart. To match said rhythm with words and sounds, beholding the memories therein as a celebration of what it means to be alive, together. It is all of the “things” that make being a parent special, interesting and experimental; forging a bond that children never forget. When parents meet said opportunities with picture books, they enter a world of unknown possibilities; there’s no end to depiction when a beautifully written and equally illustrated picture book is in play. Fortunate to be reminded of how powerful the impact is, I carefully itemized this year’s Imagireading Summer Reading List and started it out with the Lee Bennett Hopkins anthology, Amazing Places.
Amazing Places is a shining example of the literary work that should lead both at home and in the classroom. It clearly portrays the nobility of family, tradition, and culture simultaneously; inviting readers along for a journey they can feel. All through the eyes of the brightest, the ones that have the responsibility of retelling the tale in a way that commands the rest of the senses. It is a must-have, must-share read that is bound to become timeless.
There’s so much to revel in Amazing Places. The geography in itself is intriguing, encompassing the structural and behavioral adaptations of nature and all of its wonder. Each poem cleverly suits the collective scene and sets the stage for presence and virtue, qualities every Imagireader needs to cultivate literacy development skills. The poems are generously paired in a way that makes one think about just how beautiful, despite what is shown otherwise, this country, thus the world we live in, indeed is. I cannot say enough about this spectacular title; it rivals Imagiread’s all-time favorite published by Lee & Low and one that I hope will be graciously treasured near and far. Because I love it so, I designed an Amazing Places companion activity to get the creative writing juices flowing. The activity seeks to connect Imagireaders to their thoughts when identifying and describing. Download it here and don’t forget to share your results with us. Afterward, be sure to leave a dazzling review. Reviews help reading communities discover books that they might enjoy. Speaking of enjoyment, a huge thank you to Lee & Low Books for supporting Imagireading Today! as they have over the years. For more information about how Lee & Low has dramatically changed the landscape for multicultural children’s books, visit their website.