3 Favourite Picture Books with Discussion # 3 {Flourishing at Home Series}

For the Love of Music

This book tells the story of Wolfgang Mozart’s sister, Maria. I had no idea how much she inspired his work, or that he had a sister who was so musically gifted as Maria apparently was. The story is fabulous, as well as the art. Not only does it teach of the more ambiguous aspects of the famous Mozart, but it also gives so much inspiration, and fosters a love for music. Throughout the story, it teaches musical terms as well, and in a very unique way.

For Discussion

It seems that Maria, though allegedly as gifted as her brother, sadly has fallen into obscurity. Partly because it wasn’t seen as appropriate for women to be acknowledged in the realm of fame in the time she lived, and partly because all her works have been lost. She was unable to accompany her brother during tours. It seems sad that, because she was a woman, her great giftedness musically has been highly unacknowledged. In fact, she was unable to use her musical skills in the way she would have loved to. I wonder how this affected her emotionally. She would have had to suppress her passion for music somewhat, to appease a culture who wasn’t willing to recognize a female musician. We’ve all faced life circumstances that have required our suppressing passions of some sort. It is a hard thing to do, especially when one has been given a gift in the very area they are to suppress.

Electrical Wizard

Electrical Wizard tells of the discoveries and story of Nicola Tesla. He was intrigued by electrical energy from the time he was very small, and would create different experiments even as a child in effort to produce electricity. It helped the kids and I to understand how electricity works, all the while learning about this famous discoverer and inventor. Along the way, we also learn bits about his rival, Thomas Edison. The end of the book offers more detailed explanations of both AC and DC electricity, magnetism and more for those who wish to dive deeper… my kids did.

For Discussion

There are a few opportunities for ethical discussion as we watch two rivalless  men in their attempt to rise above the other. Certainly some unethical choices were made.

It is so interesting that Tesla had this passion to discover electrical current from the time he was so young. He was inquisitive, observant, and persistent in his quest to discover electricity and provide power for the world. I love how he persevered in the face of the “impossible”.

The Sound of All Things

This book is the true story of a young hearing boy who grew up with deaf parents. He was constantly asked by his father to describe sounds. He was asked to describe what the crash of a wave sounded like, what a roller coaster sounded like and so on. His son struggled to describe these sounds satisfactorily. He finds himself in a library, surrounded by, “…as many words as there are grains of sand on Coney Island.” He avails himself of the opportunity to learn a variety of descriptive words. He realizes his vocabulary is inadequate to describe such difficult concepts as sound. So intriguing!

For Discussion

I love how this books invites us into the world of the unhearing… one who has never heard even the simplest of sounds that we are so familiar with. In fact, we are so familiar with sound  in general that the thought of describing specific sounds completely eludes our minds.

The boys father would ask, for instance, “How does a crashing wave sound?”. We would stop, and try our best to describe the sound. We didn’t do so hot, but we enjoyed the exercise, and the thought it provoked. It reminds our children, as well, of the gift God has given us in our ability to hear.

I hope you will enjoy these titles as much as we did!

In the future, I will no longer be doing titles in sets of 3 unless they are of the toddler variety. I plan to do individual book review posts, even for picture books.

Happy reading!

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