Tag Archives: Anna Feinberg

Minton Goes – Anna Feinberg/Kim Gamble

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minton

Allen & Unwin Australia

ISBN: 9781760111960

Australian Pub.:January 2015

RRP $19.99

Can you imagine my delight when, coming so soon after reviewing the latest Tashi book, I receive the complete series of Minton books in which to also revel?! Oh pure joy!

Many of you will be familiar with the clever little salamander, Minton, who first appeared in The Hottest Boy Who Ever Lived which of course is the first book in this compilation.  When Hector, the hottest boy, finds happiness at last in the frozen North, Minton returns to their sunny beach where he meets a friend and begins his own adventures. In each subsequent story, Minton becomes smitten with a different form of transport and using recycled materials builds his own (instructions for the reader’s own at the back). In my experience, kids around Year 2/3 love these stories and they are of course, so useful for supporting the ‘Transport’ unit in whichever form it takes, from a library perspective. Each week with Year 3 we would read another story, discuss other similar vehicles to that featured and in small groups, the children worked on their own design plans for a “Minton” style vehicle. All the while, bringing along hordes of recyclable materials for the grand building sessions at the end of term, after which the vehicles and designs went on display.

As Small and I were so absorbed with all our Christmas books up until a few days ago, I didn’t get a chance to start sharing this one but will be doing so on her next sleepover. She is going to love Minton (she has her own pet blue tongued lizard) and she will love the construction idea as well as she is always making things.

Despite being the 7 books in one volume, this is not too chunky for smaller hands – though chubby it is not tall and so a comfortable size. What a wonderful present for someone who is just about to leap into series!

Highly recommended for primary school libraries, readers and lizard lovers of all ages from around               6/7 years up!

Check out some handy teaching ideas here!

Tashi and the Wicked Magician: and other stories – Anna Feinberg and Barbara Feinberg/Pictures by Geoff Kelly & Kim Gamble

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tashi

ISBN: 9781743315088
Australian Pub.: October 2014
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Imprint: A & U Children
Subject: Picture books
Suitable for ages: 5-8

I have discovered over the past twenty years, most of those as a teacher-librarian, that everyone loves this heroic and clever little figure, who comes from far away. Tashi’s adventures have entranced readers, both boys and girls, from his very first appearance and this latest instalment will prove every bit as enchanting.

Tashi’s gift as a storyteller is only rivalled by that of his creators and this lovely hardbacked collection of five stories would make a wonderful gift – but will also be a hot favourite in any primary school library. I have seen the toughest and most advanced readers excitedly scoop up new Tashi books with a nonchalant disclaimer ‘I loved these when I was younger Miss’ – then take them home and devour them!

In this collection Tashi and his friends deal with a nefarious wandering magician (though there is some doubt as to whether saving the greedy Baron’s treasures is a worthy cause), have a narrow escape in a dangerous house fire, thoroughly rout some thieving rare orchid snatchers and finally, as told on the fun camping trip with his ‘adopted’ family, Jack & Co, a story that demonstrates Tashi’s resourcefulness and courage in the face of a rather wily dragon.

The Tashi books, including this one, offer children and teachers to explore themes of friendship, bravery, loyalty, ethical problem solving, teamwork and more. There is a richness in the stories that can springboard into many follow on activities including exploring other cultures and countries.

Learn more about the creators here and enjoy some fun Tashi activities here.

By the way, if anyone has ever seen a toy Tashi figure, I’d love to know about it!

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