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How the Moon Regained Her Shape [Paperback]

By Janet Ruth Heller & Ben Hodson (Illustrator)
Our Price $ 6.26  
Retail Value $ 8.95  
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Item Number 243784  
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Item description for How the Moon Regained Her Shape by Janet Ruth Heller & Ben Hodson...

The moon, insulted by the sun, becomes a sliver of herself, but with the help and encouragement of her friends, returns to her former glory, in this story that explains the phases of the moon.

Publishers Description
Influenced by Native American folktales, this fascinating story deals with overcoming adversity, self-confidence, and understanding the phases of the moon. After the sun insults her, the moon gets very upset and disappears - much to the chagrin of rabbits who miss their moonlight romps. With the help of her many friends and admirers, the moon gains self-confidence each day until she is back to her full size. The "For Creative Minds" section explains the phases of the moon and answers those pesky questions like "why is the moon up during the day?", and "why does the shape of the moon change?

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Item Specifications...

Pages   32
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.25" Width: 10" Height: 8.75"
Weight:   0.4 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Mar 10, 2007
Publisher   Sylvan Dell Publishing
ISBN  1934359025  
ISBN13  9781934359020  

Availability  0 units.

More About Janet Ruth Heller & Ben Hodson

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Janet Ruth Heller has her Ph.D. in English Language and Literature from the University of Chicago. After a career of almost 30 years of teaching at various colleges and universities, she is currently an assistant professor for the English Department at Western Michigan University. She has taught a wide variety of classes, including creative writing and literature for children. Janet is a prolific writer of poetry and stories that have been published in a wide variety of magazines and journals. She is a founding mother of Primavera, a literary magazine based in Chicago.

Janet Ruth Heller currently resides in Portage, in the state of Michigan.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Children > Ages 4-8 > General
2Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Myths > General
3Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Myths > United States > Native American
4Books > Subjects > Children > People & Places > Multicultural Stories > Native North & South Americans
5Books > Subjects > Children > People & Places > Social Situations > Self-Esteem & Self-Respect > Fiction
6Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > World Literature > Mythology > Children's Books > General

Reviews - What do customers think about How the Moon Regained Her Shape?

"A Story About Self-Confidence, The Power of Words, and Compassion"   Jul 15, 2008
My pre-schoolers did not like this book. However, I believe this book is geared toward elementary school children.
The story is influenced by a Native American folk tale. The illustrations and story keep the Native American theme throughout. In this story, the sun makes fun of the moon. The moon sulks and changes in size and shape. The moon finally realizes her wealth. She regains her shape and size.
The illustrations are bright and bold. The words are simple to sound out. The theme is important. This is a book for all elementary school children--boys and girls. Teachers will be able to use the book in the classroom.
Great Learning for the FAmily  Aug 29, 2007
How The Moon Regained Her Shape by Janet Ruth Heller, Illustrated by Ben Hodson is a simple imaginary tale which in story form explains to children about the phases of the moon. The illustrations reflect the Pacific Northwest First People's culture and also the Native Americans of the Southwest. The book wond Children's Choices award from the International Reading Association and the Childdren's Book Council. The section at the end of the book for Creative Minds is an excellent and more scientific explanation of the moon, as a guide for teachers and other adults. I learned so much from reading this simple children's book, and you will too! A GREAT gift for any family!
both strongly positive and strongly negative parts to this book  Jun 7, 2007
It is rare I have such ambivalence about a book.

First let's discuss what this book is. It is a tender little tale that highlights the power one's words can have to affect the feelings of others. It also advocates taking a balanced look at oneself rather than clinging to only hurtful things said. This is a positive and needed message. The story is charming the pictures are pretty. THe color palate is very soothing, mostly neutrals and blue-greens. Almost all of the pictures are a double page spread, which is important when reading to young(pre-reading) children because it is easier for them look at the two, open and facing pages as one complete thing. I enjoyed how the representations of the phases of the moon in the corners of each picture followed the text of the story.

Now let's get to the important issue of what this book is not. This book is NOT a Native American story which has been passed orally through generations to impart wisdom and culture to the future. I live in a place where Native American culture isn't visible in the general culture, and even I feel a responsibility to point this out to children I share this story with. I'm surprised to read there is such confusion about this point. The character of the moon looks a lot like a kokopelli, which is never an image of a personified moon, and the character of the comet (quite shockingly) has hair that looks as if it belongs in Japanese anime. It is clear to me that the author and illustrator don't even want to try to pass this off as genuine. Yet, I repeatedly read summaries and reviews about this story which appear to think the story is authentic.
TO skip over this important issue is unkind and insensitive, the two antagonistic traits of the Sun in this story. Too ironic.

If the world worked the way I would like it too, I would have any reprintings of this book include extension pages with activities that explore Native Culture just as the book already carries moon extension pages.
Feminist myth with lovely pictures  Jun 6, 2007
This children's book is a tender telling of a myth that explains why the moon changes shape throughout the month, set with Native American Indians in rich illustrations of the American southwest. The story is sensitive and thoughtful, and I appreciated its focus on women: not only the personification of the moon as a woman, but also the way that women are integral to the arc of the story. After the sun has scared the moon into believing that people don't need her, the moon seeks help from an independent woman. Helpful men play roles, as well, but the final scenes of the story are of women dancing in a ring, celebrating the moon and her importance to their lives. This myth was engaging to my two toddler nephews, who demanded several reads in a row; they also delighted in the colorful pictures of a animated, angry sun, the helpful comet and the many superb details of desert rocks and plants. I appreciated the science section at the back of the book, which details the astronomical explanation of the phases of the moon, but I don't think that children old enough to understand the science would be as interested in the story as younger readers.
Joel A. Nichols for TCM Reviews.
A story about the strength of words  Apr 30, 2007
Reviewed by Stephanie and Parish (age 3) Rollins for Reader Views (4/07)

"How the Moon Regained Her Shape" is about the moon losing its size, because the sun ridiculed the moon. The moon losing its size is an example of how people lose their confidence when people use words that hurt.

A comet directs the moon to a woman named Round Arms to show the moon his worth. Round arms takes him on a journey to hear what others think of him. He then realizes his worth. The words of others build him up after the words of the sun tore him down.

"How the Moon Regained Her Shape" tells a wonderful, relevant story of the strength of words to both hurt and heal. Children so often do not understand the power they have when they communicate with others. This book does a great job of explaining that.

The illustrations are Native Indian-like. Of course, Round Arms is a Native Indian name. Though the illustrations do accurately portray the story, the illustrations are not attractive to children.

Parish did not want to read this book, but she wanted ice-cream; we made a deal.

"Did you like this book?"
"Hmmmm..." She puts her finger to her mouth in the contemplating manner.

"Why not?"
"I don't know."

"Do you like the pictures?"

"Do you want to keep this book or give it away?"
"Give it away."

We all know that children can be cruel to other children. "How the Moon Regained Her Shape" explains well to children how both hurtful and helpful words can be. The words are appropriate for beginning readers. Though the pictures are not attractive, parents will find "How the Moon Regained Her Shape" to be a wonderful story to share with their children.


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