HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Seasons of Joy: Every Day Is for Outdoor Play
Author and Illustrator: Claudia Marie Lenart
Publisher: Loving Healing Press, 2017
Language level: 1
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing and/or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing and/or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Ages 2 – 4
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Lenart, Claudia Marie. Seasons of Joy: Every Day Is for Outdoor Play (published in 2017 by Loving Healing Press, 5145 Pontiac Trail, Ann Arbor, MI 48105). Do your kids prefer to sit inside watching television and playing video games? Or do they enjoy playing outside in the fresh air and warm sunshine? This picture book pairs dreamy images of children, animals, flowers, and trees captured in needle-felted wool paintings with a rhythmic text that expresses the joy which young children can experience in nature’s seasons. In the spring, they can run, hop, and jump up and down the grassy hills like newborn bunnies while they picnic in the meadow and look at the flowers. In the summer, they can play hide and seek in the woods and chase butterflies all day until the fireflies arrive.
In the autumn, they can pile the fallen leaves high, jump on the mound, and then pile them up again. What are some things which you might think that they can do in the winter? Author and illustrator Claudia Marie Lenart is a fiber artist whose soft sculpture characters are created by repeatedly poking wool and other natural fibers, like alpaca, with a barbed needle. In Seasons of Joy, she shares the pure and simple delight of children playing outside. This is an important message. Everyone agrees that youngsters need to get away from sedentary pastimes and do more physical activity. What a fun way to encourage the kids to get out of the house and spend time playing outdoors and connecting to nature!