Asking most kids to pick up a book during July or August is like asking them to clean their room or eat their Brussels sprouts. Fortunately, there's a simple solution to the quandary of summer reading lists: Stock them with titles that are fun and challenging and encourage kids to look beyond a book's covers.
"A Treasure's Trove" (Treasure Trove, Inc.) by Michael Stadther is one such book to consider. A beautifully illustrated fairy tale suitable for children of all ages, it became a New York Times best-seller, captured the hearts and imaginations of children and families and, through clues hidden in its pages, inspired a nationwide treasure hunt. At the request of teachers and librarians, the author has read it to children at hundreds of schools throughout North America and at the annual White House Easter Egg Roll.
The story, which appeals to both boys and girls, takes place in the Great Forest and tells a sweet (and sometimes sad) tale of friendship and greed, good and dark fairies and how love can overcome fear. There is plenty of action and suspense, plus beautiful fairies and romance. The book is all about family values, love and cooperation, loyalty and friendship. It teaches children the importance of saving the forests, about working together to accomplish their goals and that they need not be afraid of the dark.
"This book's value is truly in the words and excitement on the kids' faces," said Katie Mullins, a 3rd grade teacher at Degan Elementary School in Lewisville, Texas.
Free Teachers' Guide & Books
Because children quickly and easily gravitate to the book's characters and themes, teachers asked the author if he could provide additional "Treasure Trove" material for classroom use. In response, "A Treasure's Trove Teachers' Guide," developed in conjunction with a panel of leading educational advisors in the U.S., is now available for download at www.atreasurestrove.com/schools.
Intended as an enrichment tool, it is chock-full of puzzles and activities in such subject areas as reading comprehension, poetry, music composition, map reading and drawing, problem solving and critical thinking. The first 1,000 educators to register online for the new guide will receive a free copy of "A Treasure's Trove," "A Puzzle Book Companion" and the "Official Solution Book to A Treasure's Trove."
In September 2006, the book's sequel, "Secrets of the Alchemist Dar," will be released-this time accompanied by a worldwide treasure hunt. Once again, Stadther will visit schools to read the book to students in grades 3 and up. Teachers and principals interested in having the author visit their schools should sign up early by visiting www.atreasurestrove.com/schools.
"A Treasure's Trove" is available in hard- and softcover at major bookstores and Amazon.com.