We are learning about the British Empire in World History right now so we decided to focus on books set in Britain or its colonies this month. We read about an imaginary tiger, walked our way through India using the alphabet, how popcorn made its way to England, and the first woman paleontologist. **We are using The Story of the World Vol. 4 this year. We like how it is a narrative textbook (basically you get the facts but in a story telling manner) and then to make it even more richer we supplement with historical picture books or living history books.
We have read about Mary Anning before, but this book drew me in with its beautiful colors and striking cover. Mary Anning was the first woman paleontologist and made a living finding fossils along the seashore in England (She found the first ever complete plesiosaur skeleton). The tongue twister She sells seashells by the seashore was inspired by Mary Anning.
Apparently at the time, popcorn was not that big of a deal in the US because it was so common, but it was unheard of in England. That was soon to change because farmer Olmsted Ferris devised a scheme to bring popcorn to England and even had a chance to pop the popcorn for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert after they heard about this amazing food. **Apparently they would have popcorn parties in people’s parlors and marvel about the popcorn popping out of the pan over a fire.
I always like the geography alphabet books. They are targeted to younger kids usually, but this one had a longer explanation of each topic (and a cute poem for each letter) so we got a good idea as to what it was and why it was included in the book.
Tiger in My Soup was a purely fun read. A little boy wants his sister to read his book to him, but she keeps on telling him no. So he tries to read it himself and begins to see an imaginary tiger popping up around his house. It was cute. **I decided to include it on the list because it involved an Indian boy and a tiger, so that fit into our theme for the month.
What have you been reading lately?