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ABeCedarios: Mexican Folk Art ABCs in English and Spanish (Folk Art for Teaching Kids)

ABeCedarios: Mexican Folk Art ABCs in English and Spanish (Folk Art for Teaching Kids)
Author/Publisher: Cynthia Weill, Moisés Jiménez (Illustrator), Armando Jiménez (Illustrator), K.B. Basseches (Photogra
Emphasis: spanish for kids
List Price: $14.95

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Product Description

Every ABC book worth its cover price is bound to have bright colors and big letters. But not every ABC book has magical hand-carved animals to illustrate every letter. And very few alphabet books present those letters in more varieties than English! Very few alphabet books except the ABeCedarios, that is! In this brightly colored book, the alphabet is presented in both Spanish and English, and includes the four additional letters-and whimsical animals-that make the Spanish alphabet so much fun.

The famous folk artists, brothers Moisés and Armando Jiménez, carved the wonderful animal figures that illustrate each letter in ABeCedarios. Working with their wives and children in the beautiful village of Arrazola in Oaxaca, Mexico, they carved and painted each enchanting animal by hand. For many centuries, people in Oaxaca have carved wood to make toys and household objects. However, it was Moisés and Armando's grandfather Manuel who started making animal figures. Now more than sixty families in Arrazola make their living from wood carving.

Cynthia Weill works at Teachers College, Columbia University in New York City. She is the co-author with Pegi Deitz Shea of Ten Mice for Tet (Chronicle Books, 2003), a book inspired by the Vietnamese embroidery she saw while working in international relief in Hanoi, Vietnam. She is trained as an art historian and studies the process of folk artisans around the world.

K. B. Basseches is an artist, photographer, and art educator. She was an assistant professor at Virginia Commonwealth University in the Department of Art Education, and served as a staff photographer at the Smithsonian Institution in the Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC. Basseches has exhibited throughout the mid-Atlantic region and in the Los Angeles area. She lives in Richmond, Virginia, with her young son and husband.

About the Author
Cynthia Weill is a professor and mentor to teachers at Columbia University's Teachers College. She also owns a business-Aid to Women Artisans-that promotes the craftwork of artisans from developing countries. ABeCeDario is her second book.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Cinco Puntos Press; Bilingual edition (November 1, 2008)
  • Language: Spanish, English
  • ISBN-10: 1933693134
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933693132
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 7.5 x 0.5 inches
  • Average Customer Review:

    5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars - every creature is a complete work of art
A beautifully bright book, each page displaying an original Oaxacan Woodcarving by the Jimenez family in Mexico. The whole family works through the entire process of completing each individual piece and the outcome are incredible, stylized, creatures that kids will not keep their eyes off! Every page consists of a picture of one of these Oaxacan animals, and a different letter of the alphabet. The craftsmanship would not be better, and the book itself is made with extremely high quality. Turning the pages it is so easy to see that every creature is a complete work of art.

Children love the two languages that the animal's names are written in, my children (ages 2 and 4) repeat the English and Spanish animal ABC's right along with me every time. We have had this book for a week and they consistently have chosen it and want to "say" the animals- and tell me their favourites (over and over) again! You cannot go wrong with this book, I would even use it for babies as the pages are so incredibly coloured and bright I think they would love it, but it would be easiest for my kids probably between the ages of 1-5 to be completely taken by it. It almost feels like it is sunny outside, when here in Oregon all it is doing is rain. Looking at the pages, the colours lift you up and carry you to a much brighter imaginary place.


Rating: 5 out of 5 stars - Simple, but not plain!
Always on the lookout for excellent children's books for my elementary school's library, I found this one at our public library and was immediately drawn to it by the colors. Each letter of the alphabet has a figurine of a handmade creature that begins with the letter in both English and Spanish (not all animals' names do so). I showed this to our Spanish teacher, who was very excited about the book, too. She commented that it would also give her an opportunity to use the "color" words. The paper is heavier than the usual ABC book, and it looks like it will hold up well for our "industrial use"!
Adios, Amigo!


Rating: 5 out of 5 stars - Highly recommended; even adults will enjoy lingering over the unique animal artistry.
ABeCedarios is a bilingual English/Spanish ABC book featuring photography of stunningly beautiful carved wooden figures of animals, done in the Oaxacan tradition by sculptors Moises and Armando Jimenez. There is a carved animal for each letter of the alphabet (including the letters unique to the Spanish alphabet, such as n with a tilde), in this colorful and inventive way for teaching a young child their ABCs. Highly recommended; even adults will enjoy lingering over the unique animal artistry.


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