Houston, Texas–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–September 10, 2003–Construction paper and tape are still on school supply lists, but bridging the classroom language gap is becoming a major element of the back-to-school experience. With Hispanics the fastest-growing group in U.S. elementary and secondary schools*, a new bilingual book, Meet My Friends/Conoce a mis amigos, aims to help English- and Spanish-speaking children in grades 1-3 learn a language through cheerful stories and colorful illustrations.
Meet My Friends/Conoce a mis amigos, the first in a series of bilingual children’s paperbacks from Little Chameleon Books, is two books in one; teachers, children and families read the stories in one language, then flip the book over to read them in the other. The tales follow Rosa, Miguel and other children as they visit grandparents in Mexico, receive a birthday surprise, visit the dentist, sell cookies, or learn about trucks.
Available at select SAM’S CLUB locations in Texas, Florida and California, the book features easy-to-read text and cheerful illustrations that capture young readers’ attention. It retails for $6.47 and is the first bilingual product for both teachers and parents offered at SAM’S CLUB. The book is also available at http://www.LittleChameleonBooks.com, where parents can download free tips for developing their children’s reading skills.
“Some 6.8 million children speak Spanish at home*,” says Karen Gallow of Kid Prep, producer of educational materials and teacher resources for grades K-5, and publisher of Little Chameleon Books. “Parents will enjoy reading the stories with their children, and bilingual education and ESL teachers will love that the book builds reading comprehension and develops critical thinking skills.”
Debbie Walker, Texas educator and reading specialist, wrote the stories in the 320-page book. Martha D. Carter, Nolan Carter, and Dorothy Nashely Ruiz, educational software writers, translated and edited the Spanish. Four artists created the illustrations.
“I love the way the illustrations complement the stories and assist young readers with understanding the text,” says Sara O’Neil, branch librarian of Harris County Public Libraries in Houston.
Since 1995, Kid Prep has provided instructional materials that support school curriculum and reinforce skills found on state and standardized tests.
*National Center for Educational Statistics and U.S. Census