Thursday, November 12, 2015

WannaBe...A Firefighter! A Review.

I am thrilled to write a trial review for the Schoolhouse Review Crew and The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, and hope this is just the first of many. Homeschooler? Blogger? Curriculum junkie? Check! To my sweet friends and bloggy buddies, I am excited to give this a go in hopes of joining the 2016 crew and appreciate your support and interest! Joining the crew is the perfect marriage of my love for books, blogging and budding passion for our own growing schoolhouse. As a bonus, we get to explore new curriculum-for free! This is an awesome opportunity for me to connect with and contribute to the online reviewing community, and in return receive new books and materials  that will no doubt enrich our homeschool experience.

So here goes something first review! With two small boys and another on the way, I chose to review the e-book "When I grow up, I want to be...A Firefighter." This book is just one of the larger WannaBe series and is available online through the TOS family education magazine and shop.

In the bright eyes of most five year old boys, firefighters and superheros are pretty much the same thing. This book was a great spark to the interests of my growing kindergartner, and I know it will serve as the perfect companion to our upcoming unit study on community helpers. 

My opinion:
Overall, I really enjoyed this material and would call it a very thorough and valuable beginning resource on what it means to be a firefighter. However, for our purposes I found it to be a bit too thorough for Kindergarten. The website says this material is appropriate for children ages 4-10, and I would recommend that it would be more valuable to a child closer to age 10 who may be a more skilled, independent reader. As an e-book it's not as visually stimulating or colorful, and also is very text heavy. Also, many of the supplemental activities including word searches and math problems are at a higher level than kindergarten. That being said,  I can see us unraveling even more potential from this book in the future.

How we used it:
While I felt it was mostly geared towards older kids, there are good bit of ideas and resources we were able to incorporate and it wasn't too difficult to bring the history and stories down to the a 5 year old's comprehension level. We especially enjoyed learning about the early "bucket brigades" and the origin of dogs in the world of firefighting. Even this 30 year old learned something new!

At the kindergarten level, we took advantage of the coloring pages, copy work, and craft making a shoebox model of a firetruck(word to the wise-just say no to red paint!). We were also inspired to write a thank you note to our local firemen and visit a firestation, where we saw the chapter on the everyday in's and out's of a fireman's job come to life.

Aside- to you moms who are not so closet party planners, this book offers super fun ideas on how to throw a firehouse themed birthday party, complete with games and decor details!

I see this book as a valuable asset to our homeschool library even now and look forward to diving deeper in the future as we hit higher grades. 

What I love most about this book and the "WannaBe" series as a whole is that it opens up a world of wonder and possibilities to the growing child who wants to be an architect one day and a dinosaur the next. It reminds me of the Dr. Seuss quote from "Oh the places you'll go," where he says

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.....You're off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, so... get on your way!”

Other titles in this series include "When I grow up, I want to be a...Pilot, Veterinarian, Missionary, Police Officer, and Video Game Designer" to name a few. Thanks to books like this, your curious kiddo may just jump into the costume box and trade in his spy goggles for a fireman's hat. :-)

Further product details:
Sold online by The Old Schoolhouse-$8.95

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Excellent review! I am so thankful for resources like this and a teacher like you who can give our very curious and inquisitive children some direction and more importantly many opportunities to explore!