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The Old Schoolhouse Magazine
Whole World Board Book

By Christopher Corr and Fred Penner
Barefoot Books

2067 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02140

Whole World Board Book and CD by Barefoot Books is a visually attractive children’s book meant to inspire young learners to care for the world. Its text is an adaptation of the popular gospel spiritual “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands.” The wording is changed to “we’ve got” or “he’s/she’s got the whole world in our/his/her hands.” Cartoon-like illustrations of children around the world decorate each colorful page to match the lyrics. The size of the book is perfect for little hands, and the pictures will keep them interested for many enjoyable reads.

The last few pages are dedicated to giving additional information, increasing our awareness of the importance of the sun, moon, mountains, valleys, plains, deserts, lakes, rivers, trees, flowers, birds, fish, towns, and cities. A final page lists ways to reduce global warming and would be practical stewardship ideas whether you accept the theory of global warming or not. Children will find the accompanying CD, which is stored inside the book, enjoyable. Lyrics and music are also included.

While the book is beautiful to look at, I would not purchase it if I did not already own it. My children noticed the change in the lyrics and asked me why God had been omitted. This was confirmation of my thoughts as well; when the Creator of the world is erased from the goal of stewardship, all of the glory wrongfully goes to man. I’ll stick to the original composer’s wording—“He’s got the whole world in HIS hands” and be inspired to care for His world from an obedient and grateful heart, not this book.

—Product review by: Andrea Jones, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, June 2008.

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