written and illustrated by Lauren Stringer
Click on these words for the author’s own activity guide for this book (a FREE PDF to view and download)
When I began to read the book, I was overwhelmed with the feeling it was by Cynthia Rylant book (my favorite author). I couldn’t shake the feeling although I could clearly see this book was written and illustrated by Lauren Stringer. Later I read the inside back jacket flap and learned that Lauren Stringer has illustrated many Cynthia Rylant books, so my intuition or memory had been at work. Then I noticed other books Stringer illustrated such SNOW and SCARECROW, which are both by Rylant. This kind of thing has probably happened to you. Aren’t finds like this fun?
Anyway, I immediately liked this book and auhor. The reason Lauren Stringer wrote it was something about her child coming indoors, hot in the many layers of winter clothing, and saying how hot it was in winter. Then the author thought about the many ways we keep warm in the winter with layers of clothing, hot fires, warmer meals, and cozy houses. She wrote a book based on all those thoughts. This is explained on her author page for this book.
When my now grown children were very young, they would ask me to “make it winter” in the summer, or if I could please make summer in the winter. Comments like these reflect the child’s growing awareness that winter is cold and summer is hot. The next step is the realization that they can become sweaty sledding or playing in the snow, as they are all wrapped up in winter clothing. They can shiver after a swim on a hot summer day. Seasons are not absolutes and children begin to realize there are gray areas when thinking about them. Along these lines, children begin to realize that looking forward to something time seems slow, and when looking back at something nice that happened time seems to have gone by quickly. Children expressing such thoughts are doing some higher level thinking! When children express thoughts like these, a little discussion helps them make more sense of the world around them.
For this book I made a FREE 22 page PDF with a Venn diagram work page, answer key, game, and letters to spell the words “winter is the warmest season” for a class display. I included some decoration signs, as well. I used hearts in these pictures as Valentine’s day is approaching, but this lesson doesn’t specifically have anything to do with that special day.
I hope that teachers are able to find this book in a library, and that reading it to the class will prompt some thinking discussions. I hope the materials are useful. Carolyn
Winter is warm, free, PDF (specific book not required for use)