We read this nonfiction book from the True Books Geography Countries series.
Iceland (True Books)
The librarian recommended this series, and it was well written, but still contained too much information for the Bibliophile's age (2 years, 9 months). We will probably stick with this series if I can't find anything simpler for him, and just read selected parts of each book. I wish a geography book series existed for a younger crowd (anyone know of any?).
As we read it, we made a list of things we learned about Iceland:
Iceland is an island.We also enjoyed learning about Icelandic names -- that "sson" or "dottir" are added to a father's first name to create the child's last name. So we talked about what our last names would have been if we were born in Iceland.
There are very few trees there.
There are glaciers and volcanoes.
Its nickname is the Land of Fire and Ice.
It has geysers.
Icelanders eat a lot of fish and lamb.
They speak Icelandic.
Then we read this great fiction book set in Iceland:
How the Ladies Stopped the Wind
This was a really fun find. It explains how a group of ladies in Iceland decided to solve the problem of too much wind by building trees in their village. The sheep who like to eat the trees pose a problem, but one that is eventually surmounted -- with the help of the cows (and the chickens, who play a humorously essential role). It was a little on the older side for the Bibliophile, but he got the general idea and seemed to enjoy it (he chose to keep it rather than return it to the library yesterday when we stopped by, so that is a thumbs up vote). He tells me his favorite part was the chickens.
On the crafty/hands-on side, we made an Icelandic flag. And we made a glacier (by freezing a loaf pan of water overnight), and set it up as a play scene with his toy boats, lego men, and flag. He enjoyed this for a good hour or so, although we departed from Icelandic studies, and moved onto pizza delivery scenarios, and then giving his toy animals baths in the water.
I also cooked "Jólagrautur" aka Icelandic Yule Porridge. I took a photo, but I'm no food photographer, and it doesn't look very appetizing. It was yummy, though. I think every culture probably has their own version of this, and I just think of it as rice pudding. The Bibliophile ate a few bites, and liked it, but it clearly wasn't a fave (he's not big on mushy food). It beat trying our hand at cooking fermented shark.
Other ideas we didn’t get to or scrapped for one reason or another: make a volcano, make a geyser, viking hats, paper boats.
I am linking this post up with the Geography/History link-up at Children Grow, Children Learn, Children Explore.
Comment: What places are you learning about this week? What are your favorite geography resources for little ones? (Our landmark cards, Hugg-a-planet, and Geopuzzles are probably our favs).
Disclosure: If you click on any of the links in this post and purchase anything, we may earn a small commission through our affiliate relationship with Amazon.com.