My 6-year-old son, Justin, is on the spectrum of autism. As such, he has difficulty remembering what a story is about and has a hard time retelling it. Your story’s format gives my son and others the opportunity to connect with the story, engage in the process, and to express themselves. It gives them the chance to draw the character as they see it, not as we want them to see it. Thanks for sharing the story with me and Justin, and with all the kids who will benefit from reading them.
- Lyna & Justin Le (6), San Jose, CA
I love this book! As a parent of three and spending many hours reading stories to my children something new and refreshing is always needed. Betina’s & Bailey’s Adventures is a fun, innovative, and creative story and experience. I appreciate The Companion Guide with leading questions and concepts to inspire kids to think and learn from the story...This book is great for travel, to leave with a babysitter, or just for an evening home with your child.
- Shauna Horton, Soquel, CA
Evaluation of Bailey's Adventures "Under the Stairs":
Each story provides an overview of a situation or circumstance that speaks to a specific issue (i.e. boredom, deceitfulness, lying) that the children are then given question and discussion points to address they are also provided with activity suggestions and/or they can make up their own.
The author's stated goals for the facilitated stories enclosed therein were as follows:
- Break the stereotypes of the Dick-and-Jane images.
- Build unique character creation and identification.
- Unleash the imagination by providing a safe and supportive environment encouraging imagination, creativity, and self-expression.
- Engage parents or others in the creative process.
- Introduce and reinforce values and skills.
In going through the scenarios myself, I was intrigued by how my own mind came up with various creative thoughts, especially when the "what does he/she look like" questions were asked. I also realized that depending upon what happened in the given scenario I automatically created a picture in my mind as to the type of people interacting in the scenario. I found several points of deep rooted issues that need to be addressed by the Word of God. Praise the Lord!
Okay on to the children......
I did the assessment using only my own children Dakarai 12 years old and Marius 5 years old.
The boys loved going through the scenarios and stated that they liked the fact that they were able to make up the "what, when and how's" of the story. They were excited about drawing pictures of what the characters, rooms looked like and argued why their depiction of the character or room was best.
My overall evaluation of this book is Excellent!.
I believe that the author has accomplished all five of the stated goals as provided at the beginning of the book.
- Kelly E. Smith with Dakarai (12) & Marius (5), San Jose, CA
Teachers, Reading Specialists & School Counselors
Having worked with children over many years to improve their reading skills, I am struck by the technique utilized in The Companion Guide. The questions posed require prediction and visualization, both of which are comprehension strategies. They encourage making connections, finding details and main ideas, recognizing cause and effect, and vocabulary development. The format and variety of questions make these stories an invaluable tool for teachers and parents to help children increase their reading skills while enjoying some marvelous adventures.
- Rose Hersey, Certified Reading Specialist, PA
Kids will love getting to know Betina & Bailey. The characters’ exuberant imaginations and creativity transport the reader instantly into other times and places. “Leading Questions” enable a parent, teacher, or other grown-up to involve the child further in the story while stimulating critical thinking. And how wonderful to allow the child to be the illustrator! These stories need to be a part of every young reader’s library.
- Susan Dunswell, Naturalist & Educator, PA & HI
"A Virtual Whale Watch" and Children’s Educational Liaison for The Center for Whale Studies www.centerforwhalestudies.org
As an educator, I see so many benefits to the Betina & Bailey series, from the creativity and critical thinking opportunities to reading comprehension skills. I haven’t seen a better method for encouraging good reading practices than those found here. This unique series takes the reader through the process of imagining the details surrounding the characters and story setting. By asking the reader to provide these details, Pavilonis helps the reader engage with the story, which can draw kids into the world of imagination and the magic of the written word—and maybe even create a love for reading.
- Tamera Parks, M.A. Educational Counseling
Former English Teacher, California High School Guidance Counselor
Licensed Counselor & Therapist
With eloquent attentiveness to a child’s time for learning about the world, Ruth invites kids to utilize their own imaginations. In her poetic and articulate invitation, she offers a great gift: the door into our own creativity; something which needs special attention in a time of media bombardment. This book is destined to be a delight for youth.
- Dr. Laurie Moore, PhD, LMFT, CHT
Author, Speaker, National Media Resource
As a life coach, I help people to dream big and then create roadmaps to turn their big dreams into reality. But in order to dream big, you need to be able to see the dream—to visualize what the big dream looks like, feels like, and even tastes like! There is no greater tool for this than an interactive story format like Betina & Bailey. Whether or not children create a hero with their same shape, color or background, these stories allow children to see themselves anew, teaching them that they can reach for the stars, regardless of where they start the journey. Moreover, they offer children the opportunity to see themselves as whole, perfect and complete just as they are, and that is priceless.
- Jeffrey Van Dyk, CDC, CPCC
Life & Professional Coach
President, International Coaches Federation—San Francisco Chapter
Author Ruth Pavilonis’ talent is not just her writing but her ability to see through the eyes of a child. Today’s child is lost in the age of information where the Internet, reality TV and video games are tragically the new educational “tools”. She’s given something far more profound and cutting edge than any technology, she’s given a child the ability to be creative, expressive and imaginative! (Something that has a greater positive and lasting impact than the latest YouTube video!) Betina & Bailey is a gift—not just a story. From a real-life, corporate skills perspective, critical thinking in business is the rule not the exception and authors like Ruth Pavilonis is at the forefront of providing tools for children that will help them develop these critical-thinking skills to business skills.
- Alan DeWald
WWSE Executive Briefing Program Manager, Cisco Systemsp>
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