Art and Art Appreciation Resources in Overdrive



April celebrates several famous artist’s birthdays! Raphael, Leonardo Da Vinci, Joseph William Turner, John James Audubon and Edouard Manet. To help you learn more about these amazing artists and many more, take a look at the resources we have recently added into our Overdrive E Library.

Discovering Great Artists

Discovering Great Artists by MaryAnn F. Kohl

“Discovering Great Artists” has 75 great artists featured in 110 amazingly fun and unique quality art appreciation activities for children. They will experience the styles and techniques of the great masters, from the Renaissance to the Present. A brief biography of each artist is included with a fully illustrated, child-tested art activity, featuring painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, architecture, and more. Includes such greats as Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Monet, Degas, Picasso, Van Gogh, Dali, Matisse, Pollock, and O’Keeffe. 1998 Benjamin Franklin Silver Award, 2002 Practical Homeschooling Reader Award. Full “click-to” resource guide at Bright Ring’s website to show each artist’s most famous works.
Some activity examples are:
Da Vinci – Invention Art
Michelangelo – Fresco Plaque
Rembrandt – Shadowy Faces
Monet – Dabble in Paint
Degas – Resist in Motion
Picasso- Fractured Friend
Van Gogh – Starry Night
Pollock – Action Splatter
1997 Benjamin Franklin Silver Award, Education
2003 Practical Homeschooling Award, 3rd Place
2007 Practical Homeschooling Reader Award in the art appreciation category, 3rd place.
2009 Practical Homeschooling Reader Award in the art appreciation category,1st Place

Monet Paints the Day

Monet Paints the Day by Julie Danneberg

A glimpse into a day of Claude Monet’s life shows the painter racing against changing light, the incoming tide, and the elements as he paints an ocean scene in the plein-air style. Based on a true incident, the story is enhanced by brief facts about Impressionist painting, Monet’s life, and excerpts from the painter’s letters and notes.

The Charlotte Series:

Charlotte in Giverny

Charlotte in Giverny by Joan McPhail Knight

It’s 1892 and Charlotte is bound for Monet’s famous artist colony in Giverny, France, where painters like her father are flocking to learn the new style of painting called Impressionism. In spite of missing her best friend, Charlotte becomes enchanted with France and records her colorful experiences in her journal. She makes new friends, plants a garden, learns to speak French, and even attends the wedding of Monsieur Monet’s daughter!

Illustrated with beautiful museum reproductions and charming watercolor collages, Charlotte in Giverny includes a French glossary as well as biographical sketches of the featured painters. This delightful journal of a young girl’s exciting year will capture readers’ imaginations and leave a lasting impression.

Charlotte in Paris

Charlotte in Paris by Joan McPhail Knight

It’s 1892. Charlotte and her family have lived abroad in the famous artist colony in Giverny, France, for a year, when an exciting invitation arrives. The celebrated impressionist Mary Cassatt is having an exhibition in Paris. While in Paris, Charlotte dines at a cafe on the Champs-Elysees, watches a marionette show in the Tuileries gardens and celebrates her birthday at the Eiffel Tower. Illustrated with stunning museum reproductions of works by artists such as Monet, Degas, Cassatt, Renoir and Rodin as well as lovely watercolor collages, this sequel to Charlotte in Giverny also includes biographical sketches of the featured painters. Charlotte’s charming scrapbook will leave fans of the first book, art lovers, Francophiles and readers of all ages shouting, “Vive Charlotte!”

Charlotte in London

Charlotte in London by Joan McPhail Knight

It’s 1895. Charlotte and her family came to France three years ago so that her father could learn to paint in the French style of Impressionism. Now they are traveling to London to see if the famous artist John Singer Sargent will paint Charlotte’s mother’s portrait. In London, Charlotte and her best friend, Lizzy, stay in their own room at the Savoy Hotel, attend a fancy dinner party with famous writers, watch boat races on the River Thames, learn about legendary London ghosts, and even visit a gypsy camp.

Illustrated with beautiful museum reproductions and exquisite watercolor paintings, the book also includes biographical sketches of the featured painters. This vibrant journal of Charlotte’s exciting journey will make any reader long for lovely London.

Lives of Artists

Lives of the Artists by Kathleen Krull

From Da Vinci to Warhol, each of these 20 artists is respectfully exposed for their idiosyncracies as well as their contributions to the history of art. What they ate, what they wore, who they loved and who their friends were – it’s all here.

ARTISTS INCLUDED: Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Bruegel, Anguissola, Rembrandt, Hokusai, Cassatt, Van Gogh, Kollwitz, Matisse, Picasso, Chagall, Duchamp, O’Keeffe, Johnson, Dali, Noguchi, Rivera & Kahlo, Warhol

The Stories of the Mona Lisa

The Stories of the Mona Lisa by Piotr Bosany

Discover the history of modern and contemporary painting through the famous Mona Lisa!”Dad, will you tell me a story?” asks a little girl. “Sure,” artist Piotr Barsony responds. “I’ll tell you a story about a painting. And the Mona Lisa, the most beautiful painting in all the world, will be our subject.” Thus begins the fascinating history of modern painting through what many consider the most famous work in the history of art: the Mona Lisa by Léonardo De Vinci. Piotr acts as the museum guide for his young daughter throughout the book, taking us on a journey through an imaginary museum. He describes famous art movements and artists, including: impressionism, cubism, expressionism, favism, minimalism, surrealism; Monet, Manet, Cézanne, Picasso, Bacon, Pollock, and more. All of the most famous painters of the modern and contemporary art movements are explained with their own Mona Lisa portraits, in their signature styles. Throughout the book, Piotr acts as a guide, explaining to his daughter (and the reader) each genre of paintings in a clear, simple, and entertaining way. By the end of the book, we discover that he’s actually the artist who’s been painting all those Mona Lisas—and the results are spectacular. The Stories of the Mona Lisa is the perfect book for any child who loves art, history, and a good story. 60 color illustrations

Reviews from Overdrive

April 7th is World Health Day – Human Body Resources

Everything Kids Human Body Book


World Health Day is set aside every year on April 7th, by the World Health Organization, to promote health around the world. In the Learning Commons we thought that it would be a great day to highlight our Health and Human Body Resources in our Overdrive library. Stay Healthy!!

My Scrapbook of the Human Body

My Scrapbook of the Human Body by QA International

The wise Professor Genius opens up the pages of his personal Scrapbook of the Human Body for us.

Everything Kids Human Body Book

The Everything Kids Human Body Book by Sheri Amsel

Why you need air and how breathing works With more than 30 different puzzles and games about the human body, plus information on how to take care of your own body with good nutrition, exercise, and more, The Everything Kids’ Human Body Book is the ultimate way to learn how the body works—inside and out!

The Human Body

The Human Body by Evan Moor Educational Publishers

The Human Body presents information and investigations on these nine concepts: Cells are the fundamental unit of life Specialized cells protect the body from harmful substances Food follows a path as it is digested Good nutrition provides energy for cell growth and repair The heart and lungs work together Muscles and bones provide movement and support The nervous system relays messages to and from the brain Parents pass traits to future generations Body systems interact.

Fascinating Facts Human Bodies

Fascinating Human Bodies by Katharine Kenah

A human being loses an average of 70–100 strands of hair a day. A sneeze travels at speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour. Fascinating! Human Bodies delves inside the human body and introduces these extraordinary facts and more! —Spectrum(R) Readers are the perfect Common Core aligned tool to support the development of nonfiction reading skills crucial to a young reader’s success. Each leveled reader features high-interest informational content, exciting full-color photo illustrations and Common Core aligned comprehension practice focused on the development of critical thinking skills. This multilevel series is the perfect addition to any library at school or home.

Your Circulatory System

Your Circulatory System by Conrad J. Storad

The circulatory system is made up of the heart, the blood, and strong tubes called blood vessels. But what does the circulatory system do? And how do its parts work together to keep your body healthy? Explore the circulatory system in this engaging and informative book.

Lintball Leo's not so stupid Questions about the Human Body

Lintball Leo’s not-so Stupid Questions about your Body by Dr. Walt Larimore

‘Everything a boy should know, but won’t ask!’ Finally, everything you wanted to know about your body, but you’ve just been too chicken to ask. Lintball Leo’s Not–So-Stupid Questions About Your Body is the first book for boys that gives honest answers to real questions about your body from a biblical perspective. No, you’re not falling apart—you’re just growing up! But there’s no need to fear, when Lintball Leo is near. He’s your personal guide to understanding your body. With information about everything from steroid use to body parts, there’s not a question Lintball Leo hasn’t heard. These aren’t questions some adult made up, but they’re real questions asked by real boys just like you. You want to know the truth? Now you can, because Lintball Leo’s Not–So-Stupid Questions About Your Body gives you the facts—no holds barred! Through imaginative and innovative products, Zonderkidz is feeding young souls.

reviews by Overdrive

Student Yearbook 2014

I am enclosing a letter from our HCS Learning Commons Student newsletter editor, Jubilee Chiu who is organizing a yearbook this year for interested students and families.

Jubilee Chiu 1:25pm Apr 1
Dear HCOS Parents,

On behalf of HCOS, I’d like to invite your child(ren) grades 8-12 to take part in our first ever yearbook! Our Yearbook team will be using an amazing online yearbook maker called Mixbook to compile the Yearbook for HCOS 2013-14. There will be class portraits, pictures of special events (school trips and grad), school clubs, pages showing past contests, and more. We will be featuring photos from the Comparative Civilizations 12 trip to Europe, CHEC 2014, Global Citizenship Program 11/12, Grad 2014, and other events, so photos will be most appreciated.

If your child(ren) would like to be a part of our yearbook, please email me (Jubilee) from the Yearbook Committee at with the student(s)’ full name and grade, along with a headshot of the student(s).

We are requesting those who have photos from the Comparative Civilizations 11/12 trip to email it to ASAP. Emails will be sent in the future requesting parents and students to email us photos from school events/trips as well.

Everyone will get a free digital copy of the yearbook. Physical copies are available as well, and you can purchase them from the link we will be sending you.

Jubilee Chiu

iPad Apps for Dyslexia/Reading Writing Support

See on Scoop.itHCS Learning Commons Newsletter

Staff at CALL Scotland have produced a helpful Wheel of Apps guide for iPad that may be useful for students with dyslexia or who just need some additional support with reading and/or writing diffic…

Pippa Davies @PippaDavies ‘s insight:

iPad Apps for students with Dyslexia.

See on

Canadian Geography Titles

Canadian Geography Titles


Did you know that Nunavut became a Canadian Territory on April 1st, 1999? In celebration of our newest territory, we thought it would be great to highlight some of our Canadian Geography resources in the Overdrive library.

ABC of Canada

ABC of Canada by Per-Henrik Gurth

From Arctic to Zamboni, kids can follow the alphabet on a colorful tour across Canada. On their journey, they’ll visit Canadian landmarks, including Jasper National Park and Peggy’s Cove. They’ll also meet friendly characters enjoying Canadian pastimes, such as riding in the Calgary Stampede, playing hockey and watching the Northern Lights. Vivid illustrations and simple language guarantee that even the youngest traveler will enjoy this trip!

Canada 123

Canada 123 by Kim Bellefontaine

See and count the sights on a colorful tour of Canada from coast to coast. Bold landscapes and an adorable cast of characters are sure to have kids making the trip from one to ten and back again!

Oh Canada

Oh Canada by Per-Henrik Gurth

This title in the Canada Concept Books series by Per-Henrik Gurth is bursting with striking, kid-friendly art. It’s a cross-Canada tour showcasing the distinct identities of each province and territory. There are also two more titles in this series Canada in Colours and Canada, All Year.

F is for French

F is for French by Elaine Arsenault

Founded in 1608, what city is one of the oldest in North America? Where and when was Canada’s first road built? What world-famous circus was the inspiration of Baie-Saint-Paul street performers? Discover the answers to these questions, along with other facts, in F is for French: A Quebec Alphabet. Readers young and old can romp the sandy beaches of Les Iles de la Madeleine, visit Montreal’s Space for Life (Canada’s largest natural science museum complex), brave the arctic cold in the Nunavik region, or sit back and enjoy the music at one of the many performances taking place at the Montreal International Jazz Festival.


Canada by Christine Fournier

Provides an overview of the history, geography, people, economy, government, and other aspects of life in Canada.

Canada, The Land

Canada, The Land by Bobbie Kalman

The second-largest country on Earth, Canada possesses a tremendous variety of natural wonders. This new second revision to Canada the Land takes students on a fascinating tour of the country’s rugged coasts, frozen northern regions, vast prairies, and majestic mountain ranges. Learn about Canada’s agricultural and other national resources, and how they relate to the rest of the world. Updated information includes facts and statistics, as well as a revision of which animals currently appear on extinct and endangered lists.

Spotlight on Canada

Spotlight on Canada by Bobbie Kalman

Spotlight on Canada introduces children to Canada’s multicultural people, its varied landscapes and climates, its exciting cities, and its joyful celebrations. A huge country with only one neighbor, the United States, Canada is divided into provinces and territories. French and English are its two official languages, and its rich history goes back to its French and English roots. This colorful book celebrates the diversity of this great country!

Canada Eh?

Canadian Eh! by Doug Sylvester

Canada — the land of boundless natural beauty and untapped resources. In our unit, students will adventure into Canada, exploring the geographical, geopolitical and industrial make-up of the nation. Our unit starts off with a knowledge-based section, where students are expected to know the names and locations of the provinces, territories and capital cities. Student notes and a map activity are used in correlation with this section. Students then study the main landforms of Canada, emphasizing the industries important to each area. This Canada lesson provides a teacher and student section with a variety of reading passages, activities, crossword, word search, colouring book and answer key to create a well-rounded lesson plan.

Reviews by Overdrive

Earlybird rate for BC CHEC ends March 31st. !

The BC Christian Home Educators’ Convention, April 25 & 26th is coming up soon!
Carol Barnier is our keynote speaker and we have programs for children and teens too! The ever popular Trade Show has your favorite vendors! We also have a High School Fair on Friday for those looking at the grad years to come, and a New to Homeschooling stream for those who are new or just considering their options! Bring a friend!
Earlybird rate ends on March 31st for BC CHEC! Prices go up on April 1st so register soon! Check it out at

April News in the Learning Commons

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Welcome to April and the joy of Easter, and new life in Christ!  We hope you enjoyed a wonderful Spring break!  Now is the time to bring out the shovels, turn over the soil and stretch our limbs outdoors!  Our themes this month include Poetry Month, Fairy Tales, Spring and Easter!

BC News re curriculum

As new funding changes in B.C. on how we use our curriculum funds, the learning commons is growing.  Pippa shares more about curriculum on Overdrive, and new e kits on the horizon  here.

Natalie shares about Poetry selections contained on the web, in the public domain and in Overdrive in this article!

Fairy-Tales are an important part of early childhood development as they encourage the imagination to soar!  They allow our students to develop a conscience for good and evil, whilst also enhancing the creative imagination.  Resources on Fairy-Tales are found in this article.

News from the Read-A-Thon!  Yes we have our winners!  Congratulations to all participants and winners!  To find out who won the grand prizes go to this blog post from Shandra.

Spring is here and to find out more about lesson plans, and resources in our learning commons please go here.

Easter lesson plans may be found here.


April Events on the Ning!


Poetry month invites all aspiring poets to join in our creative writing challenge and register for our Poetry Competition on the Ning!  Students as young as grade 3 up to grade 12 may enter the contest this year and there will be prizes for the best writing for High School and Elementary.  We look forward to seeing all budding poets and writers enter this contest.  For more information please go to the Ning here.  If you are 13 and over and need an invite to the Ning please contact Pippa?  Or you may send entries to your teacher and they will share on the Ning on your behalf.

Current Awareness April.

To find more information on competitions, Easter, student work and lesson plans please go to our Scoopit Page here.

Blessings from the learning commons team.

John 11:25-26
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.

Fairy Tale Resources – Hans Christian Andersen’s Birthday April 2nd

Chinese Fairy Tales


April 2nd is Hans Christian Andersen’s birthday. What a wonderful way to celebrate by highlighting all of the great Fairy Tale resources we have in the Learning Commons! Fairy Tales are an important part of any language arts program as they teach the differences between fiction and non-fiction.  Read to your students and then encourage them to act out their stories, and/or create their own ending to a fairy-tale,  or better yet write their own fairy- tale!   You can find more out about Hans Christian Andersen here. You may want to look at some great unit study ideas for Fairy Tales here.

Little Mermaid and other Fairy Tales

The Little Mermaid and Other Fairy Tales by Hans Christian Andersen

This collection includes “The Little Mermaid,” the story of a mermaid princess who falls in love with a human; “Great Claus and Little Claus,” an account of a clever young man who turns a series of misfortunes into a fortune; as well as “The Ugly Duckling,” “The Red Shoes,” “Thumbelina,” and more. 12 unabridged stories.

Sleeping Beauty and other Fairy Tales

Sleeping Beauty and Other Fairy Tales by Jacob Grimm

Magic spells, witches, handsome princes and beautiful maidens abound in a beguiling collection that includes “Hansel and Gretel,” “Little Red Riding Hood,” “Snow White,” “Rumpelstiltskin,” “The Frog Prince,” “Rapunzel,” “The Bremen Town Musicians,” “The Golden Goose,” “Tom Thumb” and “Sleeping Beauty.”

Grimm's Fairy Tales Classic Starts

Grimm’s Fairy Tales (Classic Starts) by Jakob Grimm

Once upon a time… there were two brothers, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, who gave the world some of the best-loved fairy tales ever written. From “Cinderella” and “Rumpelstiltskin” to “Snow White” and “The Brave Little Tailor,” this charming anthology offers young readers a wonderful introduction to 12 of the Grimm’s’ most popular stories.

Chinese Fairy Tales

Chinese Fairy Tales by Fredrick H. Martens

Both adults and children will enjoy this captivating collection of authentic Chinese fairy tales, featuring talking animals, princesses in peril, clever cowherds, and other engaging characters. Based on legends, ghost stories, and myths, the stories include “The Flower-Elves,” “The Dragon-Princess,” “The Bird with Nine Heads,” and many others. 25 black-and-white illustrations.

Crafts from Fairy Tales

Crafts from your Favorite Fairy Tales by Kathy Ross

The make-believe world of fairy tales comes to life with just some scissors and paste and a few household items. For a dramatic accompaniment to the retelling of your favorite tale, make the ugly duckling that changes into a swan, the Beast that turns back into a Prince, or even the Sleeping Beauty puppet that opens her eyes for the first time in a hundred years. You can make up a charming bed for the seven dwarfs from an egg carton or a beautiful gingerbread house from an ordinary lunchbag. You can do a model of Rapunzel letting down her hair or of Jack climbing up the beanstalk. Illustrated step-by-step instructions will provide hours and hours of rewarding creative activity.

Folk Tales and Fairy Tales K-1

Folktales and Fairy Tales Literature Pocket K-1 by Evan Moor Educational Publishers

Every pocket in Literature Pockets Folktales & Fairy Tales , Grades K-1 begins with a reproducible retelling of a tale.About the book:students cut, colour, and staple the half-pages to make a minibook to put in the pocket. A teacher resource page offers suggestions for sharing the tale – comprehension, art, and writing activities follow, helping the story come to life for students two pages of evaluation forms help both teacher and student assess what was learned. The seven tales in this book include: The Little Red Hen,The Three Little Pigs,Goldilocks and the Three Bears,The Gingerbread Man,Little Red Riding Hood,The Three Billy Goats Gruff and Too Much Noise

Folk Tales and Fairy Tales 2-3

Folktales and Fairy Tales Literature Pockets Grades 2-3 by Evan Moor Educational Publishers

Every pocket in Folktales & Fairy Tales for Grades 2-3 begins with a two-page reproducible retelling of a tale. About the book: There is a teacher resource page that offers suggestions for sharing the tale. Comprehension, art, and writing activities follow, helping the story come to life for students. Two pages of evaluation forms help both teacher and student assess what was learned.The eight tales in this book include: Henny Penny, The Brave Little Tailor, The Fisherman and His Wife, Jack and the Beanstalk, The Elves and the Shoemaker, The Frog Prince, The Emperors New Clothes and The Bremen Town Musicians

Reviews by Overdrive

Kid President’s Letter To A Person On Their First Day Here – YouTube

See on Scoop.itHCS Learning Commons Newsletter

It’s hard being a person sometimes. Kid President offers up some advice on how to be a person – an awesome person. He’s gathering a list of all the things #t…

Pippa Davies @PippaDavies ‘s insight:

Kid President reminds us of the joy of living and counting blessings.!

See on

Did You Know?

Our Overdrive E library has really been a happening place this last month with stats increasing over 100%.  WOW!!  Who knew e-text books, novels and downloadable workbooks could be so providential :D

WHAT I did not know that we had curriculum on our e Library?”  How do I get it??!

We ask that you first watch this video please?


There are several places we are adding new e kits to our Overdrive library.  This month we welcomed Rachael Freed to our learning commons as a curriculum writer to help us bridge the 2014 and 2015 learning outcomes with reliable e kits!  Her first e kit is Needs of Plants and Animals for Kindergarten/Grade 1  You will find this kit and more in the coming year under


Downloadable Overdrive Unit Studies.

Our learning commons team has started writing themed material units, to help bridge some of the seasonal learning which happens throughout the year.  As these materials are shared we are archiving them in this place under the tab

E BOOK LIBRARY  and then

Themed Resources Overdrive

We would love to help you get started using our E Library.  You can watch the archived video on using our learning commons which happened in the fall at this link here:

Library Webinars Just the Basics November 6th 2013
Organized By: Pippa Davies and Shandra Wiebs At: 2:14 PM on 06/11/2013
Collaborate Recording IconRecording Link:

Or you can read more about how to use the e library here.

Or you can Skype/email Natalie or Pippa and we will personally share with you the process of getting you started on Overdrive!

Blessings from the learning commons team!



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