A life like mine

December 27,2011
Professor Mom
Aliki McElreath( )

Aliki is a writer and college English teacher. She lives in North Carolina with her husband, two children (ages seven and ten), a dog, a cat, a rabbit, and too many fish.

Every year for Christmas, I buy at least one book for L. and T. They love books, and it's not difficult to find one to please them. When I was growing up--and well into my twenties--one of my favorite parts of Christmas was getting a good book or two and spending those lazy, quiet days post-Christmas curled up on the couch by the fire, reading. I thought about those days when I watched L. seated on that same couch, absorbed in the new Steve Jobs biography, and when I happened upon T., on another couch, reading this book:

When I shopped for books for the kids this year I happened upon A Life Like Mine and I knew it would be perfect for T. She gobbles up all books--but lately non-fiction books about other children in other parts of the world, and she is fascinated by history and other cultures. She's our budding anthropologist-in-the-making. 

And I love this book! The table of contents is divided up by each child featured in the book. T. likes to read the blurb about each child, and then turn to the corresponding page with their story.

The book not only teaches about the lives and traditions of children all around the world, but it has sections on nutrition, education, and a fascinating section on how children with disabilities live in other cultures, and are treated in schools and communities.

T. has been completely engrossed in A LIfe Like Mine since Christmas Day. I can't recommend the book enough--opening it up transports your child into worlds so far from their own, giving them a chance to read about how other children live, and encouraging them to think about their own many blessings--an important lesson, especially during a season that can quickly become more about the getting, and less about the giving part.