phd mama

from diapers to deconstruction


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The Beauty of the Body

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For this unit study, we explored the human body and its many systems. We looked at lots of pictures of the amazing internal workings of our bodies and learned how each system does its job to keep us healthy and strong. Technically speaking, the books on this list fall under health and science, but it’s hard not to classify them as art as well given the beauty of the human body. We gained new appreciation for each word read, each heartbeat, each breath as we learned about our brains and our hearts and our lungs, and everything in between.

  1. Body Sense, Body Nonsense by Seymour Simon and Dennis Kendrick
  2. Bones: Our Skeletal System by Seymour Simon
  3. Boy, Were We Wrong about the Human Body! by Kathleen Kudlinski and Debbie Tilley
  4. The Brain: Our Nervous System by Seymour Simon
  5. A Drop of Blood by Paul Showers and Don Madden
  6. Ears are for Hearing by Paul Showers and Holly Keller
  7. The Everything Kids’ Human Body Book by Sheri Amsel
  8. Eyes and Ears by Seymour Simon
  9. Germs Make Me Sick! by Melvin Berger and Marylin Hafner
  10. The Heart: Our Circulatory System by Seymour Simon
  11. The Human Body by Seymour Simon
  12. Watch DK’s Human Machine
  13. Infographics: Human Body by Peter Grundy
  14. Inside Your Outside: All about the Human Body by Tish Rabe and Aristides Ruiz
  15. It’s Not the Stork: A Book about Girls, Boys, Babies, Bodies, Families, and Friends by Robie Harris and Michael Emberley *Note that this book is particularly graphic*
  16. Lungs: Your Respiratory System by Seymour Simon
  17. The Magic School Bus: Inside the Human Body by Joanna Cole and Bruce Degen
  18. The Magic School Bus Presents: The Human Body by Tom Jackson and Carolyn Bracken
  19. Me and My Amazing Body by Joan Sweeney and Annette Cable
  20. Muscles: Our Muscular System by Seymour Simon
  21. My Amazing Body: A First Look at Health and Fitness by Pat Thomas
  22. My Body Is Private by Linda Walvoord Girand and Rodney Pate
  23. Watch Cat in the Hat Knows a lot about that: Oh, the Skin We Are In!
  24. Oh, the Things You Can Do that Are Good for You! All about Staying Healthy by Tish Rabe and Aristides Ruiz
  25. Professor I.Q. Explores the Brain by Seymour Simon and Dennis Kendrick
  26. See Inside Your Body by Katie Daynes and Colin King
  27. The Skeleton and Muscular System by Carol Ballard and Steve Parker
  28. The Skeleton Inside You by Philip Balestrino and True Kelley
  29. What Happens to a Hamburger by Paul Showers and Anne Rockwell
  30. Your Skin and Mine by Paul Showers and Kathleen Kuchera
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A List for the Lady with the Lamp

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My girls first learned about Florence Nightingale from a Doc McStuffins episode (listed below), and were delighted to learn that she was a real person. While a lot of the materials below cover the same basic information, it was interesting for us to see each new perspective on an amazing woman’s story. We learned about her life as well as about conditions for nurses, women, doctors, patients, soldiers, and citizens of the nineteenth century. We came away with appreciation and understanding for her dedicated service and sense of vocation, and we’re glad to know that, to this day, the lady with the lamp still shines brightly.

  1. Watch The Animated Hero Classics: Florence Nightingale
  2. Watch The Best of Mr. Peabody & Sherman, Volume 1
  3. Watch Doc McStuffins’ Let the Nightingale Sing
  4. Florence Nightingale by Carol Alexander
  5. Florence Nightingale by Demi
  6. Florence Nightingale by Lucy Lethbridge and Karen Donnelly
  7. Florence Nightingale by Shannon Zemlicka and Nicolas Debon
  8. Girls Who Rocked the World: Heroines from Joan of Arc to Mother Teresa by Michelle Roehm McCann and Amelie Welden
  9. Heart and Soul: The Story of Florence Nightingale by Gena K. Gorrell
  10. High Time for Heroes by Mary Pope Osborne and Sal Murdocca
  11. A Picture Book of Florence Nightingale by David A. Adler, John Wallner, and Alexandra Wallner


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Good Eats, Good Reads

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My family lives in a fantastic area for foodies; we’re not far from The Culinary Institute of America, and our region is rife with farm-fresh pickings. We’ve made it part of our lifestyle to pick our own fruits and vegetables, to purchase from farmers’ markets as often as we can, and to celebrate food that is healthy as well as delicious. When I started looking for children’s books about healthy eating, I knew I wanted a holistic approach that accounts for food as cultural, social, and historical as well as nutrition. Each of these books gave an interesting spin on health, nutrition, and the important roles food plays in our lives.

  1. Crayola’s Craft “Food for Thought…and Energy, Too!”
  2. Dinosaurs Alive and Well! A Guide to Good Health by Laurie Krasny Brown and Marc Brown
  3. Eating the Alphabet by Lois Ehlert
  4. Eat Healthy, Feel Great by William Sears, M. D., Martha Sears, R.N., Christie Watts Keyy, and Renee Andriani
  5. The Edible Pyramid: Good Eating Every Day by Loreen Leedy
  6. The Food Parade: Healthy Eating with the Nutritious Food Groups by Elicia Castaldi
  7. Good Enough to Eat: A Kid’s Guide to Food and Nutrition by Lizzy Rockwell
  8. Good for Me and You by Mercer Mayer
  9. Growing Vegetable Soup by Lois Ehlert
  10. How Did that Get in My Lunchbox? The Story of Food by Chris Butterworth and Lucia Gaggiotti
  11. Oh, the Things You Can Do that Are Good for You! All about Staying Healthy by Tish Rabe and Aristides Ruiz
  12. Little Pea by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Jen Corace
  13. My Amazing Body: A First Look at Health and Fitness by Pat Thomas
  14. Plants Feed Me by Lizzy Rockwell
  15. The Vegetable Alphabet Book by Jerry Pallotta, Bob Thomson, Edgar Stewart
  16. The Vegetables We Eat by Gail Gibbons
  17. What’s So Yummy? All about Eating Well and Feeling Good by Robie H. Harris and Nadine Bernard Westcott
  18. The Yummy Alphabet Book: Herbs, Spices, and Other Natural Flavors by Jerry Pallotta and Leslie Evans