Friday, January 22, 2010

For Fun Friday: Quilting with Children

Okay... nothing overly educational tonight! A few lighthearted reads that you can share and enjoy together! And this will conclude the quilt series!

Bourgeois, Paulette.
Oma's Quilt.
Kids Can Press.
Guided Reading Level: L
Review copy borrowed from local library.

Emily's Oma has sold her home and is moving into a retirement facility. While there are exciting, wonderful things about the move, Oma continues to relive her years and memories that were created at her longtime home on Maple Street. When she finally makes the move, she seems to shut down, refusing to talk and unwilling to try and adapt to her new "home." Emily, bright, caring granddaughter that she is, comes up with the plan to make her grandmother a quilt that will serve as a reminder of her life on Maple Street. Together, Emily and her mother sort through Oma's belongings and make two piles - one to discard and one that will be used to make the quilt. Emily's hard work and caring efforts pay off, allowing Oma the perfect amount of reminders to come to terms with and accept her place in her new home.

Chances are, your children have grandparents are rapidly aging, and possibly facing the selling of their longtime home and a move into a retirement facility, assisted living facility or nursing home. Chances are, you (and very likely, your child(ren)) are facing the emotions alongside your loved ones and will do just about anything to make the transition an easy, comfortable one. Here are a few suggestions that you and your child(ren) can do to help your loved ones during this difficult time:
  • Create a memory box similar to the one found here. Rather than holiday memories, place little items from around the grandparents' home that will act as reminders of their "old" life.
  • Grab your camera and head out to the house in which your child's grandparents used to live. Snap 10-20 photos of the house, different angles, dimensions, etc. Help your child snip the photos to recreate the house, using bits and pieces of several of the photos. An example can be seen here. (My brother created this several years ago in an art class. I have exaggerated the separate photos so it is easier for you to see how they are pieced together).
  • Or... if you're feeling really ambitious... tackle the project like Emily and her mother!
Dwyer, Mindy.
Quilt of Dreams
Alaska Northwest Books.

Guided Reading Level: P
Review copy borrowed from local library.

Quilting has been a tradition passed on from mother to daughter for many years in Katy's family. However, young Katy is just in the learning stages. She had worked with her grandmother a little bit before she had passed away and now it's up to her mother to teach her the stitches of quilting. The two spend their long winter nights working on a pile of quilting triangles found in Grandma's sewing basket with the label, "Katy's Quilt." She and her mother are left to determine the story that would ultimately be shared upon the quilts completion.
Sleep under a new quilt and your dreams will come true.
As she sleeps under her new quilt, Katy learns there is truth to this... as once again, she envisions her Grandmother and all of the times they shared together.

A perfect book for mother-daughter bonding time - a bedtime story or even just a quiet, mid-day break!

Jonas, Ann.
The Quilt.
Greenwillow Books.
Guided Reading Level: I
Review copy borrowed from local library.

This quilt book is geared toward younger children - nice to see a change of pace during this quilting theme! The text is simple, but it so accurately portrays the meaning behind some quilts!

A little girl shares with readers the new quilt that her mother and father made for her grown-up bed... a quilt made up entirely of articles of clothe that are reminders of her past - her first curtains and bedsheets... the material used to make her security item (a dog), pieces of her favorite pants, etc. The quilt offers this little girl comfort as she transitions into a new phase in her life, by allowing her little reminders of the past to grasp and hold onto those memories!

The story here is so important, as it shows how you can keep old memories alive... but it's also funny, as the little girl ultimately ends up in search of Sally, her little blue dog, who is "lost" in the quilt (really just disguised in the quilt square made out of the same fabric)! This would make a great bedtime read-aloud!

Reading Activity for The Quilt and/or Quilt of Dreams:
  • Mother-Daughter (Son) Activity: Chances are... if you're here... reading this post, you'll do anything for your daughter (and son)... including learning how to quilt if you don't know how already! Work with your child... go through his/her clothes (way back to the baby years, if you have some saved). Choose one piece from each year and continue doing so until the time your child is married. Each year, add one memorable piece to the quilt each year - whether it be a special birthday clothing, a sports uniform, a piece of a backpack, etc. Just complete the front of the quilt together. Once your child decides to marry (or even strike out on his/her own), finish the quilt as a gift and present it to him/her on that special day!

If you're interested in finding out more information about any of the books reviewed or if you'd like to purchase the books, click the cover image for a link to I am an Amazon Affiliate, so any purchases you make after clicking these images will result in my receiving a small percentage of the sale price!


style='clear: both;' Tricia said...

Hi Katie,
Thanks for this wonderful series. I'm ashamed to say I've been reading for a long time, but I'm often too lazy to leave Google Reader and comment.

In my math methods class we spend a lot of time talking about using geometry to teach about shape, patterns and symmetry. When I taught fifth grade we made a class quilt when we studied the Revolutionary War.

Here are a few of my favorite quilt titles that haven't made your list this week.



PIECES: A YEAR IN POEMS AND QUILTS by Anna Grossnickle Hines