Tuesday, May 20, 2014

H is For Home Run: A Baseball Alphabet by Brad Herzog

H is For Home Run: A Baseball Alphabet by Brad Herzog, illustrated by Melanie Rose

Rating: 4.5 stars

Maybe because I'm a cheapskate, I really like this series of alphabet books published by Sleeping Bear Press.  They appeal to a wide level of readers, so they are wonderful books to grow with and grow into.

Take H is For Home Run.  Newly 3 year old Kiefer can sit and page through it by himself, looking at the bright, big illustrations by Melanie Rose about a sport about which his family is currently focused.  He can pick out the letters that he knows--K, L, B, M, and D…  I can read the first layer of story to him. That first layer is the rhyming text, the two lines dedicated to each letter and, therefore, each baseball-themed thing.  In these lines, Herzog has thrown in as many words that start with that letter, so Kiefer hears that letter again and again, reinforcing the sound the letter makes, as he also looks at the letter on the page.
D is for the diamond, a delightful design
That gives us daring double plays and doubles down the line.
5 1/2 year old Ben can read most of these words himself, so this is a challenging read-alone book for him.  He's still happy to have me read it to him (and I'm happy to read it to him).  And alongside each letter, next to each wonderful illustration, are a few paragraphs that give more details about that baseball-themed thing.  For D, for example, readers learn that a baseball field
is called a diamond because the infield is a square turned on its edge with a base located at each corner. D is also for dugouts.  Generally, the home team's dugout is on the third-base side of the diamond and the visiting team's is on the first-base side. 
The double play is a fielding play in which two outs are recorded.  It might be an infielder "forcing out" a player at second base before throwing out the batter at first base.  Or it might be an outfielder catching a fly ball and then throwing out a runner trying to advance to the next base.  It might even happen when a batter strikes out while a runner is caught stealing. 
D is also for designated hitter (DH).  Since 1973 the American League has used a DH in the lineup to bat in place of the pitcher.  In the National League and Little League, the pitcher bats for himself.
And 7 year old Lorelei can read all of this, maybe to herself or, if he's lucky, to one of her little brothers.

There's something for everyone.  Cheapskate me and Parentingkate me are both happy!

For a complete list of titles of these alphabet books by Sleeping Bear Press, please click HERE.

No comments:

Post a Comment