Thursday, February 3, 2011

more literary notes

Thanks again, friends, for your literary contributions on that last post.

Terri, I read a lot of Judy Blume in my school years, and in my seventh-grade year happened upon one that contained accounts of teen hanky-panky experimentation.  I think it was called Forever.  My mom wasn't aware of the content, but if she had been, she would have pulled it right from my hands!  Are Judy Blume's grade-school selections all benign, in your opinion? I can't remember any of the story lines.

The boys really wanted a drawing book and just couldn't wait until Saturday, so we went to the library quickly for that today.  I picked up four Boxcar Children.  Interestingly, they all had different-sized print.  The one I own has even smaller print than what I found today.

I wondered if they varied widely in reading level, which would explain the different print.  I brought up an Accelerated Reader list and found that the few I had in hand ranged from 2.9 to nearly forth grade.  The print size wasn't related to the reading level.

In other literary news, there was a Google search on my blog today using the sentence:

Are Magic Tree House Books Anti-Christian?

Before Peter got involved in that series I looked up Mary Pope Osborne's biography (the author).  She traveled hippie style quite a bit in her younger years and earned a degree in Comparative Religion.  She spent time in some of the cities that are central to several religions.  Thus, her work is rich in history and culture and also in science facts--Peter enjoyed her rain forest selection.  While she's most likely not a Christian, she is also not anti-Christian.  I sense no agenda in her work, other than to delight and educate kids.  As with any book, parents do need to be aware of content and assist with comprehension, as appropriate, as it relates to a Christian worldview.  This is more necessary in some of her titles than others--such as in Sunset of the Sabertooth, which has cavemen and other prehistoric content.


Andrew & Terri said...

Judy Blume did write some more mature books for older readers. She has even written some adult fiction, and I wouldn't exactly call those benign. From my best recollection, however, her grade school books are just fun. That's why I put Fudge in parentheses in my last comment. It wouldn't hurt to read one before you introduce them to Peter, I suppose. I hope you find something that he loves!

Andrew & Terri said...

Oh yeah...Freckle Juice! And How to Eat Fried Worms! So much fun!

Jess said...

the other place i was a going to suggest looking for some fiction (and even non-fiction) titles is over at the sonlight site. you can see what books they have listed at certain grade levels for free reading, history or read alouds. most of those are fairly 'safe' contentwise. mrs. piggle in in there as are a few, very few, beverly clearly.
you can click on the level and then the tab for individual items to show titles in each age/level group. just an idea for other authors and types of books. :) ever try the 3rd grade detectives? maybe a little beneath his reading level. anyhow, hope that helps!
hope all are staying warm!!! :)