Tuesday, March 10

If You Were Me and Lived In.... {Review}

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Our homeschool co-op added a new class this year called GeoClub.  The middle and high school students pick a new country each month and then create a presentation on that country as well as a homemade dish.  When we had the opportunity to review the "If You Were Me and Lived In..." books from Carole P. Roman, we discovered they were a perfect fit for this project!  

We received four books from the Carole P. Roman assorted series, including If You Were Me and Lived in....Cuba, Israel, Russia, and Norway.  These books help children to understand other cultures and historical eras. They’re told from a child’s point of view, are fairly easy reads, and are full of fantastic facts and illustrations. The books cover food, clothing, daily routines, family, celebrations, jobs, and school. Each book ends with definitions and ideas for further learning.

Peek Inside the Books
Each of the books features an outline of the country with the capital marked, a glossary of terms with pronunciation, and beautiful photographs from that country with an overlay of the animated characters.  This helps to bring that country to life.
The books focus on several different aspects of the culture, including sports, holidays, food, family life, and school.  All of these concepts are both written about and illustrated in bright, vivid images that are accessible to children.

For GeoClub, we used:

  • If You Were Me and Lived in...Russia
    • Take a leisurely stroll around Russia, and discover some of the country's most recognizable sites, including the Kremlin, St. Basil's Cathedral, and the Red Square. Learn about Russia's festive New Year's celebrations, popular Russian names, and yummy delicacies, like borscht and caviar, before playing popular Russian games like chess and "fipe"--a game children may know better as "tag"!
  • If You Were Me and Lived in...Norway
    • Journey to the 'Land of the Midnight Sun,' where you go skiing, stay in ice hotels, and visit Oslo!  Celebrate Syttende Mai, and attend a skole.  Learn about the traditional Norwegian foods and use the hand-dandy pronunciation guide (a lot) at the end of the book to make sure you're saying it all correctly!  The kids created poster presentations for both Russia & Norway (see above).
  • If You Were Me and Lived in...Cuba
    • Walk the streets of Havana, visit Castillo del Moro and Cayo Coco, and attend a baseball game in this Cuban adventure.  The book incorporates a lot of Spanish, discusses traditions, religions, and popular foods, and also discusses why physical fitness is important.  We whipped up a pot of black beans and rice to accompany Cuba!
  • If You Were Me and Lived in...Israel
    • Have you heard of the Maccabiah Games?  Do you know why Hebrew is written from right to left?  Have you tried any Israeli food besides hummus?  Get the answers to all of these questions in this book!  We also liked this book because it nicely complements our 'theme of the year' - Jewish Holidays Through Literature!

One thing I noticed was that some of the books in this series are written at a lower level, with larger print and less text, while others have quite a bit more information.  I was unable to find any rhyme or reason to which fell into each category.

See what others are saying about Carole P. Roman books at the Schoolhouse Review Crew!

Carole P. Roman's Histroy, Geography, Bedtime & Captain No Beard series {Carole P. Roman Reviews}


  1. Thanks for reviewing the books! Hope you enjoyed. I love the posters the kids created ;). Yes, to answer your question, the series began much simpler and as it grew and comments from parents started coming in, I added more details. I also noticed when I read in classrooms, the children wanted more information! It also depended on my sources. Some of the contributors were so excited to share their customs and culture, I couldn't leave anything out.

    1. Very cool! It's always nice to know the evolution of product development!


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