As you all know, I don’t have girls, but I was the Chairman of the Board for our local Montessori School for several years and learned a lot from just being around all the Montessori teachers and consultants! One of the series the Montessori Consultant from Houston Montessori Center recommended was by Ruth Heller. It is FABULOUS! The pictures in the books are so bright and beautiful and the language so vivid that it really does spark an interest with the children. This series is fantastic for girls and boys, especially in the elementary years … but my boys, being a bit older, prefer a little bit more boyish series now. I will write an article about their favorite grammar books soon. In the meantime, let’s get to the 8 Must- Have Grammar Books for Girls!
Kites Sail High. A Book About Verbs by Ruth Heller.
Amazon: “Kindergarten-Grade 5 Heller gives beautiful treatment to verbs in singing verse with vibrant illustrations which fairly leap from the pages in double-page spreads. While verbs do not lend themselves easily to two-dimensional illustrations, and many of the concepts here are too advanced and abstract for the usual picture book age child, these illustrations and the design of the book have such appeal that even children to whom the words seem mostly gibberish will enjoy the rhythm and visual impact of the book. Older children will find it a painless and concise grammar lesson as well as a visual treat. Most of the verse flows smoothly, and the meanings are clear. This book should be a boon to language arts teachers in the upper elementary grades as well as fun for all children and adults who love to play with language!”
A Cache of Jewels and Other Collective Nouns by Ruth Heller.
Amazon: “In light verse and brightly colored pictures, Heller provides an introduction to a specialized part of speech, the collective noun. She lists and depicts more than 25, including such familiar terms as “batch of bread” and “bunch of bananas,” as well as more unusual phrases: “gam of whales,” “muster of peacocks” and “parcel of penguins.” The concept will stimulate the curiosity and imaginations of children with an ear for language. The illustrations, containing large, bold objects in simple yet striking compositions, ensure a visually inspiring exploration as well. Ages 4-8.”
Merry-Go-Round A Book About Nouns by Ruth Heller
Amazon: “Kindergarten-Grade 6– Nouns of all kinds are the subject of Heller’s latest in her series of books on parts of speech. Common, proper, abstract, concrete, compound, and collective nouns are all defined and shown by example in usually lilting verse. Singular, plural, and possessive forms of nouns are also thoroughly covered, and determiners are explained and demonstrated. The rhyme form is used with amazing skill but now and then seems forced as in, “Nouns are highly effective./ The last kind of NOUN is . . . COLLECTIVE.” How and why they work are not explained. Striking graphic design with large clear objects in bold colors overflowing each double-page spread make the book a visual treat. The use of bold type for all the nouns is particularly pleasing and will make for easy reading aloud. Heller’s language books challenge users’ creativity since the concepts are difficult for the picture-book format. Conversely, the verse and illustrations can delight very young children while older readers are sure to find the concise definitions clearer and certainly more entertaining than any grammar text.”
Many Luscious Lollipops A Book About Adjectives by Ruth Heller
Amazon: “To further a child’s grasp of the meaning and function of adjectives, this gorgeous picture book provides enrichment and depth of understanding. As in her other pictorial explorations of parts of speech, Kites Sail High (verbs) and A Cache of Jewels (collective nouns), Heller uses a rhymed text in juxtaposition with bold, brilliant, double-page spreads. These books are a visual and auditory feast, designed to make language discovery appealing and rewarding. Young readers will certainly enjoy–and benefit from–Heller’s elegant elucidations, and perhaps all should heed her parting advice: “Whenever you find yourself in doubt / be cautious and be wary. / It’s often very helpful / to consult your dictionary.” Ages 6-8.”
Behind the Mask A Book About Prepositions by Ruth Heller
Amazon: “Grades 2-4. this volume explores yet another part of speech: prepositions. It provides many examples of prepositions (printed in large, blue type) as well as some rules of usage. Large, colorful drawings illustrate the words imaginatively. While a child alone might find the text confusing, the many teachers who use the series will probably enjoy reading this book aloud to introduce or illustrate prepositions in their classrooms.” And another “Heller’s survey of prepositions provides early learners with basic grammar insights, using rhyming text and colorful illustrations to define prepositions and how they’re used. Parental intervention will assist in the process of a child’s understanding of the ideas; but the color and rhyme goes a long way towards solidifying a somewhat challenging concept.”
Fantastic! Wow! And Unreal! A Book About Interjections and Conjunctions by Ruth Heller
Amazon: “Grade 2-5. This title is a must-have for school media centers as it provides sheer enjoyment and stimulating instruction for both students and teachers. Learning about interjections and conjunctions is fun with this dazzlingly illustrated book from Ruth Heller’s World of Language series. The spare yet information-packed text is brought to life by eye-popping artwork. Colorful dragons, mysterious sea creatures, and rainbow-striped zebras leap from the pages. Simple yet clever, this inventive book will have readers saying “Yippee! Whoopee! And Hallelujah!” “Youngsters will delight in the rhyming text, which artistically weaves information through vibrant illustrations.”
Mine, All Mine A Book About Pronouns by Ruth Heller
Amazon: “Grade 1-6. Once again, Heller has taken a part of speech and made its function perfectly and entertainingly clear. This time it’s pronouns?personal, possessive, demonstrative, indefinite, reflexive, intensive, interrogative, and relative. From cover to cover, the stylishly drawn, brilliantly colored, double-paged illustrations grab readers and don’t let go. The exceptionally fluent, rhythmic text is printed in an unobtrusive font with pronouns highlighted in bright blue. Mine, All Mine is at its very best when read aloud. “Demonstrative pronouns make it clear. Those are far. These are near. They point out decisively. This is she and that is he.” While younger readers are an obvious audience, be sure to introduce this title and its counterparts to elementary-grade language-arts teachers and their students. Who would have thought pronouns could be such fun?”
Up, Up and Away A Book About Adverbs by Ruth Heller
Amazon: “Grade 2-4. Lively…The playfully rhymed text flows effortlessly as it discusses superlatives, irregular adverbs, and double negatives….Informative and fun.”– School Library Journal “Using expansive color drawings and catchy rhymes, Heller writes about words frequently and vividly and with an unmistakable flourish….A clever introduction. This eye-catching book explains its perplexing subject well and clearly, and more memorably than could any grammar textbook. Teachers and children will find the clever presentation informative and fun.”
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I have been in a “simplifying, downsizing and purging” mode in our house and homeschool for the last six months, but these books are still here. That is my kitchen table in the picture above 🙂 And they will be here for a while longer… we still reference them regularly! I hope you enjoy these books as much as we have!
Thank you so much for being a part of our community! Until next time….