Gino is about to complete his reader for this month, Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor. This will be my 4th time to read and discuss this material in maybe 10 years as it has been an a required reader for all of our 4 children.
For some readers, I began using some accompany workbooks or supplements to help “maximize” the learning experience. I have used the Total Language Plus (TLP) series for other titles like Charlotte’s Web, The Cricket in Times Square, The Wheel on the School, Lion, Witch & the Wardrobe, Christmas Stories, Twenty One Balloons, Where the Red Fern Grows, Courage of Sarah Noble, The Whipping Boy and after using Total Language Plus several times, I started doing my own DIY version of book review lessons/ extensions of Reading via notebook activities. For non TLP titles, I just either created exercises and reading comprehension questions in notebooks or downloaded study guides or activities.
“Shiloh” is a fairly easy read for levels 3-5 with some guidance on some “slang” or even colloquial terms. It deals with a very familiar, close to home “kiddie” subject: “a beloved animal/ pet that needs to be saved.” Both boys and girls will easily get hooked with the suspense and captivating plot.
Set in an Appalachian town of West Virginia, devoid of all digital modernities children are so accustomed with nowadays, Marty and all the other characters become a part of very thought provoking, interesting yet unsettling plot. The twists and turns are exciting and you would not be surprised if your child asks to read more than the assigned chapter for the day!
I appreciate the ways in which this story will allow your children to think through their motivations, their plans, and decision. It will give you a springboard to teach valuable moral lessons on honesty and integrity, righteousness, respect and honor.
It will provide the venue for you and your students to dig deeper on the areas of compromise, rationalization and justification and of the questionable belief that “the end justifies the means. ”
In this world of uncertainties, where the boundaries of right and wrong can be made to appear blurry, this material is truly spot on in challenging our children to think and reflect.
The book costs about Php 290.00 from National Book Store or Fully Booked. Truly worth every peso! Every chapter is overflowing with opportunities for deep reflection and pondering. Your children can easily draw valuable insights from the situations presented in the the story!
To create lesson extenders, or to help you have a richer experience of the story, you can download good study guides on it by just googling the key words : Study Guide on Shiloh, Reading Comprehension Questions for Shiloh, Lesson Plans for Shiloh. I particularly liked this one and we’re completing it this May 2017.
My daughter who loves to draw, paint and do Arts and Crafts painted her own version of “Shiloh” when she read the same story several years back.
So, I encourage you to give this book a try. It may hook you to the habit of having good and well thought of discussions with your students!