CM . . . . Volume XVIII Number 2 . . . . September 9, 2011
The "My World" collection is a series of nonfiction leveled books (guided reading levels A to H) by Bobbie Kalman. Kalman has now added 16 new titles to the series, two new books at each level. Each book is available in both paperback and hardcover library-quality binding. A sampling of the new titles include: What is It? (Level A), I Like to Play (Level B), Which Season is It? (Level C), Animal Mothers (Level D), Night Animals (Level E), What is it Made From? (Level F), Animals Move Like This (Level G), and How Do Animals Change? (Level H).
The books for levels A to F begin with a "Words to Know" page for teachers to preview key vocabulary with students before reading, and these vocabulary words are usually written in bold throughout each book. Levels G and H have a "Words to Know and Index" page at the end of the each book. For all levels, the back page of each book is entitled, "Notes for Adults," and it contains objectives for the book, before and after reading questions and activities, as well as extension activities which continue the theme of the book. For instance, in What is it Made From?, Kalman suggests an extension activity of a scavenger hunt where students explore the materials that are used to make everyday objects in their environment. Each book is also vibrantly illustrated with colour photographs on every page.
The "My World" series would be a very good resource for teachers using guided reading in the classroom. The reading levels of the texts are appropriate for the early primary grades, and the topics of the books are easily integrated into other subject areas, such as social studies and science. This leveled series also adds to the relatively limited selection of quality nonfiction guided reading materials available at the primary level. The books are also well constructed and would stand up to years of use in a classroom. The highlight of the "My World" collection is the photography; the full-colour photographs are eye-catching and brilliantly illustrate the concepts of each book. The "My World" collection would be an asset for schools looking for more leveled nonfiction titles to add to their classrooms or school bookrooms.
Dr. Kristen Ferguson teaches literacy education at the Schulich School of Education at Nipissing University in North Bay, ON.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.