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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Mrs. Wishy-Washy Early Readers

Recently Hameray Publishing Group sent me several books in the all-new Joy Cowley Collection to review. Joy Cowley's beloved character Mrs. Wishy-Washy was introduced in 1980 (just before I was learning to read) with lots of titles and additional characters added over time. These books offer high interest stories written at the first and second grade reading levels.
My 3 year old loves these books. The mom and former elementary teacher in me loves every bit of these books, too! M truly enjoys each book, but Meanies in the House and The Hungry Giant's Baby are by far the ones she requests most often (and sometimes multiple times in one day). We also have Mrs. Wishy- Washy and the Big Wash, Smarty Pants at the Circus and Dan's Lost Hat.  Problem solving seems to come easily with these stories, whether by the characters in the book or the child reading the books.   The characters are fabulous and return in additional books (not listed here).  Our three year old laughs out loud to the incidents in these funny books!

Joy Cowley is a multi-award-winning New Zealand-based author of more than 800 titles. She is widely recognized for supporting literacy programs and writing materials for struggling readers in the primary grades.
For her services to children’s writing, Cowley was awarded the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Her Majesty the Queen of England in 1992. Other honors include an honorary doctorate from Massey University, and a Dame Order of Merit from the Royal Crown in her native New Zealand.
The all-new Joy Cowley Collection is specifically written for early readers. The Guided Reading Levels of the titles within the series range from H to M, and the Early Intervention Levels range from 14 to 20. Teacher notes are included in the back section of each book.

What I Like: Everything! The stories and illustrations are engaging, yet short enough for young reader to not be frustrated. The stories rhyme! The font is large and readable. They often have some bold-faced words repeated throughout the book that is especially fun for a pre-reader. Every book has a teacher notes in the back. Each book states the word count. Whether you are just a parent reading with your child, a homeschool family, or a teacher, it's very helpful to have the teacher notes right there.  
What I Dislike: One thing that I think would be helpful would be to have the Guided Reading Level and Intervention Level written on the book. As a former teacher, I do understand why it is also beneficial to leave it off. Children in a classroom "compare notes" and know which books are more difficult than others and who are reading the "easy" books and who are reading the "hard" books.
If you are interested in purchasing these books you can click on the above links. You can also find many more great books and resources at Hameray Publishing.

If you are a fan of Joy Cowley's books, you can show it by becoming a fan of Mrs. Wishy-Washy on facebook.
Thank you Hameray for the opportunity to review these books.  


Carrie said...

Ah! I didn't know you were a former teacher. I learned something new!

And this book sound hilarious. The name of the character alone makes me grin. =) Thanks for sharing about them!

Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

We need to try more Cowley books - for some reason we don't have many of them in our library or maybe they are just all checked out. We read Mrs Wishy-Washy Christmas, and Anna was kind of lukewarm on it at the time. She really doesn't react well to the books where characters misbehave, and in that one animals got into Mrs Wishy-Washy bath without permission :)

Jenna said...

I LOVE Joy Cowley books! I'll definitely check these out. Can I ask how you got in touch with Hameray in order to review them? I would love to review books, being a former teacher myself.

Christy Killoran said...

We LOVE Joy Cowley books! Mrs. Wishy Washy is one of our favorite characters.

Renee said...

What a fun series! I wish I had known about these books when my kids were little. I'll definitely be recommending them to others. Thanks for the review and stopping by my blog!

*carrie* said...

We just received a Mrs. Wishy Washy book, and my son (3) loves it also!

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