Do you have a young artist, musician, actor or dancer in your life? Do you need a terrific gift? Do you want to reinforce what you are already reading to your children by letting someone else read it, too? Scholastic Storybook Treasures has done it again. Introducing “The Young Artists Collection: Featuring Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin”. These DVDs are animated narrations of popular books which tell stories about the different arts and their performers.
This amazing collection of works for young artists includes 3 DVDs in a boxed set (also available individually). The included stories are:
ZIN! ZIN! ZIN! A VIOLIN (Written by Lloyd Moss, illustrated by Marjorie Priceman, music by Marvin Hamlisch) A lonesome trombone is joined by various instruments, one by one, to form a chamber group of ten.
MUSICAL MAX (Written by Robert Kraus, illustrated by Jose Aruego & Ariane Dewey, narrated by Mary Beth Hurt) Max stops playing music when his neighbors complain about the noise. What will he do instead?
THE STAR-SPANGLED BANNER (Illustrated by Peter Spier, sung by Aretha Franklin) Aretha Franklin lends her soulful voice to this moving rendition of our national anthem.
KEEPING HOUSE (Written by Margaret Mahy, illustrated by Wendy Smith) Songwriter Lizzie Firkin would rather sing and dance than do chores. What if people think she’s lazy or sloppy?
PATRICK (Written and illustrated by Quentin Blake) When Patrick plays his violin, the most unusual things start to happen; fish can fly, cows can dance, and trees grow cakes!
APT. 3 (Written and illustrated by Ezra Jack Keats, narrated by Charles Turner) Intrigued by the sounds of a harmonica, two brothers set off on a search to find the musician in an old tenement building.
SHRINKING VIOLET (Written by Cari Best, illustrated by Giselle Potter, narrated by Calista Flockhart) This beautiful story about self-confidence shows us what happens when the shyest girl in school gets the lead part in the play!
THREE CHEERS FOR CATHERINE THE GREAT! (Written by Cari Best, illustrated by Giselle Potter, narrated by Ekaterina Gordeeva) This is the tale of Sara’s feisty Russian grandmother and her birthday celebration with “no presents” from everyone. What will the “no presents” be?
GIRAFFES CAN’T DANCE (Written by Giles Andreae, illustrated by Guy Parker-Rees, narrated by Billy Dee Williams) Gerald the Giraffe just wants to dance! Everyone else at the Jungle Dance seems to be a better dancer. Maybe with a little encouragement he’ll be the best of all!
AMAZING GRACE (Written by Mary Hoffman, illustrated by Caroline Binch, narrated by Alfre Woodard) Her classmates discourage Grace from trying out for the part of Peter Pan because she’s black and a girl. She tries out anyway and wins the part! (This is also available in Spanish on the disc.)
THE DOT (Written and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds, narrated by Thora Birch) A mark can change everything. Vashti thinks she can’t draw, but when she explores her imagination she discovers her own creativity. (This is also available in Spanish on the disc.)
ART (Written and illustrated by Patrick McDonnell, narrated by Bobby McFerrin) Words are at the tip of a paintbrush. A picture can really be worth a thousand words.
ISH (Written and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds, narrated by Chester Gregory) Ramon is discouraged when his older brother makes fun of his drawings. How will he get his confidence back? (This is also available in Spanish on the disc.)
NORMAN THE DOORMAN (Written and illustrated by Don Freeman, narrated by Katherine Kellgren) Norman the Door Mouse secretly enters a sculpture competition at the art museum. Will he win?
WALLACE’S LISTS (Written by Barbara Bottner and Gerald Kruglik, illustrated by Olof Landstrom, narrated by Zach Braff) Wallace, a mouse who loves life by lists, meets a spontaneous, artistic new neighbor named Albert. He soon discovers how enchanting life can be without his lists.
My favorite of the bunch was “Giraffes Can’t Dance.” It is a book I am VERY familiar with, having read it to my children about a thousand times. The thing I liked about this version is the added music. When the different types of dancing are mentioned, the appropriate music is played in the background. It was very well done. Overall, it was a treat for me to hear familiar (famous) voices reading the stories aloud, but it was the attention to detail that impressed me the most. Plus, each DVD includes a Read-Along feature that shows the words on the screen as the narrator reads. This function can be turned off, too, but I recommend you leave it on, especially if you have early learners.
If you like this series, I recommend you look at the other collections available from Scholastic Storybook Treasures. They offer an amazing variety of animated narrations on a variety of topics and by a variety of authors. Your favorite book might be available or you can try something new! I, personally, am ogling the “I’m Dirty and I Stink 2-Pack” and “The Scrambled States of America and More Stories by Laurie Keller”. Log on, check them out and enjoy!
BUY! The Young Artists Collection: Featuring Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin retails for $24.95 and has a running time of 2 hours and 47 minutes.
**Win** The Young Artists Collection: Featuring Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin for the artist in your family!
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***Giveaway closes August 12th @ 11:59 pm EST and winner will be chosen via Random.org. Open US.***
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