The Old Schoolhouse® Product & Curriculum Reviews

With so many products available we often need a little help in making our curriculum choices. The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine family understands because we are in the same boat! Do you need more information on a product before you buy? With over 5,500 products listed in 52 easy-to-use categories, much of the information you need to know is only a click away! Let our reviewer-families help yours.
Do you want to get the word out about your product or service to the homeschool community? Email Tess Hamre and share a little about what you´d like showcased, and we can help with that!

The Magic in You! Review by Cindy West

By Sally H. Taylor
Outskirts Press
5381 Sands Road
Lothian, Maryland 20711

The Magic in You! is a precious story of a positive self-image. The main character, a flower, isn't perfect. She doesn't fit the same mold as everyone else and has even been obviously damaged in her outward appearance. She suffers some ridicule from others, but more importantly, she suffers from a negative self-image. This negative image not only emphasizes her flaws she but consumes her thoughts and actions.

As the story progresses, she slowly begins to see that changing her attitude toward herself changes everything. Her flaws actually become useful, as if she has them for a purpose. Her flaws stand out less because her confidence and joy outshine them, and people begin to see her differently. She also finds that helping others, thereby taking the focus off herself, is the main key.

Although not written specifically from a Christian perspective, the story makes a very good starting point for talking about Biblical truths, such as being created for a purpose, overcoming sin, putting others' needs before our own, and seeing value in ourselves no matter the circumstance. It can encourage those with or without self-image issues to look toward the positive and try to use the negative to help others. I can especially see how this book could be life-changing for children who may have some sort of physical ailment or even those who come from abuse situations.

The illustrations are gentle and heart-warming. Through the pictures, you feel the incredible sadness of the flower and then rejoice with her later as she begins to be filled with joy. My only complaint about the book is in the words. The font is very big and bold, almost distracting at times. In fact, the gentleness of the illustrations is often overwhelmed by the large, dark print. Some of the pages contain so much print that my mind wandered from the story as I thought, "Boy, that's a lot of words for this little page!"

Overall, my children and I enjoyed the storyline of The Magic in You! If I were browsing the bookstore looking for a book to buy, I probably would not choose this one simply because of the visual issues of the text. Given the chance, though, the story would warm my heart. If I knew of a child, or adult, struggling with self-image, I would consider this book as a gift. I found it to be most appropriate for anyone over the age of six.

Product review by Cindy West, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, March 2008