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Children can readily relate to Betsy who is a real girl in a real world where fortune seems to direct her life. She so loves being on the farm and doing all the things a farm girl does, including going to school. When fate again intervenes and tries to take her away from the life she loves, some manner of common sense hitcomes into play and Betsy, though torn, bounds into another day of farmlife, full of caring love for all she comes in contact with, and grows into a beautiful young lady.
Table of Contents:
Chapter 01. Aunt Harriet Has a Cough
Chapter 02. Betsy Holds the Reins
Chapter 03. A Short Morning
Chapter 04. Betsy Goes to School
Chapter 05. What Grade is Betsy?
Chapter 06. If You Don't Like Conversation in a Book Skip this Chapter!
Chapter 07. Elizabeth Ann Fails in an Examination
Chapter 08. Betsy Starts a Sewing Society
Chapter 09. The New Clothes Fail
Chapter 10. Betsy Has a Birthday
Chapter 11. "Understood Aunt Frances"
Dorothea Frances Canfield (1879-1958) was an American author and both an child and adult educational activist. Canfield worked closely with Maria Monterssori in Italy, and was greatly influential in promoting education in the United States.
Dorothy Canfield was born in Kansas, but her family traveled as her father's academic career progressed, he eventually became president of Ohio State University. Canfield settled in Vermont with her husband and children, and continued writing professionally.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By knittymama on 03-11-17
Loved by kids, mom, and dad!
This was my favorite book as a child and I read it many times, so I'm fairly biased. :-) But I didn't announce this to the kids when I bought it and several others from Audible. They started listening while I was at work and when I got home both kids and Dad/husband were sitting silently, hanging on every word.
I loved this story because it shows the transformation of a shy anxious child (which I was) into a spunky, confident person (which I am now, partly thanks to the influence of this book). It is a great story but also something of a treatise on the author's beliefs about child development, education, etc. The adults are kind and helpful but also give Betsy the opportunity to learn to think independently, problem solve, etc. She learns to deal with test anxiety, pride, lack of attention, scary situations, etc. There are some heavy topics (including a child with an alcoholic step father) but all dealt with in a way that I felt was entirely appropriate for by almost-5 year old. Characters are not one dimensional. At the end, we are able to see Aunt Frances (Betsy's original caregiver) in a whole new light
The book is about a girl but very appropriate for boys too--my 8 year old son especially enjoyed all the small adventures --rescuing a little girl who fell into the "wolf pit" (no wolves involved), getting lost at the fair, etc.
We all liked the narrator. She does a good job with pacing and emotion and uses slightly different voices during dialogue so you can easily follow who is saying what. Even with how many times I've read the book, I felt like I understood the characters better after hearing this narrator read them. My kids like almost any narrator but I'm really picky so that's a high compliment.
I would recommend pre-reading if you have a child under about 6 or an especially sensitive child--the book starts off with Betsy being sent away from the only family she's ever known. But ultimately, I would highly recommend this book and this performance of it for the whole family.
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