Deuteronomy 6:6-7

And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. ~ Deuteronomy 6:6-7

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Carole P. Roman Books and Collections - A Crew Review

Hey friends, are you familiar with author Carole P. Roman and her various  Books and Collections ? The girls and I have been reviewing her If You Were Me And Lived In... series this month, and I'm happy to share them with you!  We received three titles from this set of geography softcovers, that introduce children aged approximately 4-9 years old, to a wide array of countries and cultures.  My daughters are a little older than the target age range, but they were enthusiastic readers just the same. The facts and information shared in these books doesn't change depending on grade. Actually, it helped to make these a fairly quick geography study to add some interest to our studies.

The titles that we received :

If You Were Me And Lived In...Australia

If You Were Me And Lived In...Germany

If You Were Me And Lived In...Scotland

Each book in this series offers a thorough, child friendly synopsis of the specific country featured. Introduced by either a male or female character, the book opens with a graphic of the highlighted country. As you may guess from the titles, the text of all of the series begins with, "If You Lived In...", and then, in a  conversational tone, dives into the specific country; its location in relation to the rest of the world, its demographics, cuisine, capital, currency, architecture, history, and many more details. Being the child friendly read that it is, certain words, the long and difficult ones particularly, are spelled out phonetically, and included in the back of the book, in the glossary.
That gives you a general overview of the collection, now let's take a closer look at the three that the girls and I have been enjoying.

                                                If You Were Me And Lived In...Australia

I chose this book because I have always been fascinated by this country/continent. The culture seems so familiar to us, and yet so different. Out of all of the books that we looked at during this review, this one is the shortest. After describing where in the world Australia is located, we  move on to learning about its capital city (Canberra), where it is, and why it was chosen. We learn popular names for boys and girls, and how children address their moms and dads. It turns out that it's "Mummy and Daddy", pretty much like we do in America. The Great Barrier Reef which is the largest reef in the world, is talked about for a bit, and we learn some cool facts regarding its sea life, and ways that it can be explored. The legendary Vegemite sandwiches are included as we talk about the Australian cuisine. The book talks about the popular sport that is Cricket, and how to play. Then there is Australia Day, which commemorates the time that the British moved to Australia to work "down under". And why do we call it down under? Well, I'll let you read the book to find out!

                                                If You Were Me And Lived In...Germany

This book was the longest book out of our three. I wanted to read this book first of all, because my heritage is roughly half German. That is also true on my husband's side. Speaking of my husband, he works for a German company, and so, the book felt like it would be an enlightening read. We learned that in Germany the country is called Deutshland -(Doytch-Lawnd), and that the name Germany comes from a Germanic word that means people. Like the other books, it begins with its location in proximity to America and the World. We found out that it is the most populated member of the European Union, and the second in immigration throughout the world. The capital, Berlin, is described in nice detail, and we learn about its history, including the Berlin Wall. As in the other books we learn about popular names, recreational activities, and as Germany has a language different than ours, we find out how people address their parents, grandparents, uncles, and more. Another fun literary excursion is to see Neuschwanstein Castle, which is a famous tourist site, said to the inspiration for a certain famed Disney Castle.
And the cuisine, talk about comfort food! It reminded me of my grandparents, and the wonderful german food that they prepared. Sauerbraten, dumplings, apfelstrudel. Yum! I never did perfect those recipes, and it may be time to give it another go! Then there is Oktoberfest, a Bavarian fest, with its rides, games, sausages, and more wonderful food! You might have guessed by  now that this book covers quite a bit in a short time, and it does. There is so much to pull out of here, and Carole P. Roman has done a great job in providing so much information in a an easy to understand way. I loved this title.

                                                If You Were Me And Lived In...Scotland

I needed to pull out the shortbread for this book, lol. I was looking forward to this title, because about 20 years ago, when we were first married, my husband and I lived about an hour south of the Scotland border, so it is a destination that we visited often, and have come to adore. It is home to probably my favorite accent in the world. Once again, we learn about Scotland's location and proximity to the rest of the world. Its capital, beautiful Edinburgh, is described with detail. Did you know that it is known as the Athens of the North, due to its buildings, whose architecture were inspired by the Greeks and Romans? We learned about the popular names for boys and girls, and how to pronounce them, like Ian, Connor, or Malcomb for boys, and Kelsey or Margaret for a lass. I confess that as  I read the book in my head, I did it with a Scottish accent, lol. And the best fact of all, as far as my 12 year old daughter is concerned, is the official animal of Scotland. Do you know what it is? The unicorn! Yes it's a mythical, and yes the Scots know it. It was chosen as it represents grace, purity, healing and happiness.  Of course, we also read about Loch Ness, and the legend of the creature known as Nessie. (Now I need to track down the movie, Loch Ness!) Cuisine is talked about of course, some that  looks familiar, like the stews, porridge, and scones, and then others that we may not find as appealing here in America, like Haggis for instance, which in case you didn't know, is a sheep's stomach filled with meat and spices. I think I'll pass on that. Oats are everywhere in Scottish cooking. I remember the tastiest oat crackers which are thick and rich.  Oh, and the tablet! No, I don't mean a digital device, this tablet is a very sweet candy, with a sort of fudge like texture. So good!
A book about Scotland wouldn't be complete without talking about the Highland Games. Here you'll see everyone in kilts, tartans, and lots of plaid! It's a sports event really, with contests like log throwing, and a caber toss. Bagpipes and dancing are enjoyed as well.  There is plenty to learn in this book!

These are fantastic books, and will add great value to your personal library. Carole P. Roman has managed to include a lot of information in smaller books. She presents them in a way that is easily accessible to children. Even though my daughters are older, they learned quite a bit of new information. For those of you that are homeschooling multiple ages, these will work well. Use them as a read aloud for younger ages, and then perhaps add other activities for the older ages, and turn them into unit studies. For example, print out black and white pictures of the flags from the countries that you're learning about, and color them. Try making a recipe or two that are popular there. Watch a documentary about a major attraction in that country. There are endless possibilities. We have enjoyed this series a lot, and I hope you'll visit Carole P. Roman and get a book, or two, or three. As for us, I'm looking for a few more titles in some of the other series written by this author. We're going to check out If You Were Me And Lived In...Renaissance ItalyIf You Were Me And Lived In...Elizabethan England , and Oh Susannah, It's In The Bag . Maybe you'd like to take a look too?

                                                            Author Carole P. Roman

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Read about more of these wonderful Carole P. Roman Books and Collections that other Crew members reviewed, by clicking the image below.

Carole P. Roman books and collections {Carole P. Roman Reviews}

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