Maria and the Stars of Nazca Great for Spanish-Speakers Learning English Maria and the Stars of Nazca is not just a book; it’s an experience. The feel of the glossy pages and the fantastic artistic renditions kinesthetically draw the reader in. The topic is complex, yet the ancient Peruvian drawings are simplistic. Similarly, the simple verbiage in Maria and the Stars of Nazca focuses on this befuddling mystery with a clear, rudimentary approach. It’s easy to envision an ESL class of Spanish speakers taking this text and blinding the Spanish for a presentation of the story of Maria. Then, the teacher could expose the Spanish for a more thorough discussion and lesson on Maria and the language. The book offers a variety of teaching options to meet many student learning styles: an engaging topic for verbal discussions, CD audio delivery, clear text for beginning ESL students, wonderful pictures for visual interpretation, unique vocabulary study for intermediate / advanced ESL students, writing invention with many possible topics, and a warm, non-fiction story. Enjoy! Dr. Diana Holguin-Balogh TESL Program Director Front Range Community College Boulder County Campus
Dual Language Poetry and Non-Fiction, Too! This beautifully written and illustrated children’s book is about the fascinating large line drawings (technically known as geoglyphs) in the Nazca region of Peru. “Maria” refers to Maria Reiche, a German mathematician who first learned about the geoglyphs while living in Peru. She studied the line drawings for some 50+ years and worked to preserve them for future generations. Peruvians mourned when she died in 1998 at the age of 95. The dual-language (English on left, Spanish on right) poetry book is a magnificent blend of reality and fantasy, written in a lyrical style that appeals to children and adults alike. The full, two-page spread illustrations by Rodger Osban are based on actual aerial photographs of the geoglyphs. Children will be thoroughly enchanted by the giant spider, playful monkey, stretched lizard, scared dog, crooked-necked bird, laughing iguana, and the long-beaked hummingbird. The expert Spanish translation was done by Carmen Casís, a Panama native and retired Professor Emeritus of English & American Literature at Denver’s Regis University. The accompanying audio CD is very well done and consists of an English version performed by the author and a Spanish version performed by the translator. It is a mini-CD that is playable on practically any CD player. This unique title (a WorldCat search revealed very few publications on this topic written for children, none of them in Spanish) deserves wide distribution. It is highly recommended for public and elementary school libraries. It will be a hit at story time! Academic libraries supporting children’s literature and literacy programs should also purchase it. Reviewer: Orlando Archibeque (Social Science Bibliographer, Auraria Library, University of Colorado at Denver)
Maria and the Stars of Nazca / María y las Estrellas de Nazca by Anita Jepson - Gilbert Many know about Nazca and its mysterious giant line drawings in the Peruvian desert, but few know about Maria Reiche, a German woman, and her lifelong dedication to them. This bilingual children’s book is illustrated by Rodger Osban in a style as uncluttered and simplified as the Nazca drawings themselves and is translated to Spanish by Carmen A. Casis. Written in simple, poetic prose, the story describes the drawings and Maria’s role in preserving them and concludes with the suggestion of a lovely possible purpose their designers may have had in mind. This book makes a great addition to bilingual and Spanish classrooms, as well as a good resource for South American culture and history. Reviewed by Patricia Dubrava Translator and teacher of Spanish and Creative Writing Author of two volumes of poetry: Choosing the Moon and Holding the Light, a finalist for the Colorado Book Awards.
From Denver, CO
-Thank you so much for opening our eyes to such a magical story. I look forward to using your book when I begin teaching.
-Thank you for opening my knowledge of other cultures and lands.
-Your adventure you shared with us was very interesting. It makes me want to explore the topic more.
-Thank you for sharing such an interesting story. I loved hearing it in Spanish!
-What an amazing idea to bring this story to children.
-Thank you for such a great presentation and website with all its activities.
-I am so impressed and intrigued by the lines of Nazca. You have such wonderful passion!
-Your creativity inspires!!
From Tucson, AZ
-I loved the way your book Maria and the Stars of Nazca invites the readers to feel such gratitude and awe in the face of the Transcendent and the mysterious. It is lovely! The texturing of the illustrations makes it come alive as well.
-Thank you for your mysteries carved, hidden in sand-- crawling, flying creatures, alive, conquering our present.
-Thank you for writing such an inspiring book that teaches us to see more than lines.
-Muchas gracias por el libro que para todos nosotros se significa mucho. Por lo pronto yo aprendí que las lineas significan mucho más de lo que nosotros pensamos. Para mí las lineas son como si nos conectaran a nosotros mismos.