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CIAO BAMBINO! A CHILD'S TOUR OF ITALY

Author: Danna Troncatty Leahy

Illustrator: Gabhor Utomo

Reserve at the Library

Publisher: AuthorHouse,

Material: paperback

Summary: A young boy tells us about his family's recent vacation to Italy. He shares with us the places he went and teaches us some Italian (numbers, colors, expressions). This picture book story describes a trip to Italy with vocaulary that new readers can enjoy.

Type of Reading: playtime reading, read aloud book, learning to read

Recommended Age: read together: 3 to 7; read yourself: 6 to 9

Interest Level: 3 to 8

Age of Child: Read with a 6-year-old girl.

Young Reader Reaction: Our child zoomed right in on everything related to food: stomping grapes, ice cream (gelato), pizza, and pasta. As we read words in Italian, she would repeat them. She liked finding the teddy bear on each page.

Adult Reader Reaction: I like that the book offers things that kids will recognize (like seashells on the beach) in addition to learning about new things. The presentation of this book will remind you of an easy reader. The sentences are short, and the illustrations help readers with words they may not know. That is a pro and a con. It makes the book useful for reading with younger children, but it is also a little more stilted.

Pros: Kids will enjoy comparing their own vacation to the things our young narrator did in Italy. Bright illustrations and simple language make this a perfect companion for introducing Italian to pre-readers and emerging readers alike.

Cons: After reading the author's other book, Bonjour L'Enfant, I was expecting a few more Italian words than what we had. In the story, we count to five, but there are numbers to ten in the glossary.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This book might be useful if you are introducing Italian in your home, as it has many of the same first words you would use in any language: color, numbers, basic greetings.

If You Liked This Book, Try: TONY'S BREAD   I AM! YO SOY!   STREGA NONA

Educational Themes: Use this book to introduce some basic Italian words. You can help a child visualize in general the places they'd visit in Italy, but it does not give you specific sites.

Notes: Although written in English, the book introduces Italian words.

Literary Categories: Fiction - picture book series, bilingual, Italian, geography, cultures and tradition

Date(s) Reviewed: March 2009

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