Lessons within children’s novels, unlike those in textbooks, often hide themselves amid their entertaining content. As a matter of fact, nearly all novels contain insights that aren’t immediately apparent to every reader; this partly explains why book discussion clubs are so popular among readers who want to delve deeper into a book author’s intent.
Several parents and teachers told us that they appreciate the lessons that the BioFables books incorporate and wished they were able to mine the content of each book more thoroughly for their children. We found that each of the BioFables books offers a hundred or more lessons (both overt and stealth) across a wide span of the sciences and humanities and realized that most parents, especially those parents who are home schooling their children, and teachers could use a helping hand to identify and organize those teaching moments. And so, the concept of a Companion Book for each BioFables story was born and then evolved over a period of many months of research and experimentation.
Most of these concepts are now freely available online. The Companion Books now envisioned will be far more comprehensive. Book 3’s Companion Book has been withdrawn until updated to a new format.
A color-coded pinwheel represents major Knowledge Gateways™ that are classified into basic and applied Sciences and Humanities subjects, such as Biology and History, respectively. A new sector, Values/Behaviors, will be included in the Knowledge Gateways. Discovery Paths™ within the major subjects connect to specific mini-lessons. Each chapter will have its own set of colorful diagrams that map out the lessons contained within that chapter.
One or two paragraphs accompany each diagram, describing the science or providing other background on the lessons featured in the diagram. You will be able to use these descriptions as a launching pad for discussing the particular lesson with young readers. Blank boxes will allow you to jot down your own experiences or ideas to help you personalize your discussions.
Once the Companion Book format has been finalized and the books published, we will invite you to explore using them as guides to sparking worthwhile conversations with your children.