FIAR Out of Print Titles

If you use the Five in a Row Curriculum you know that there are some books that are no longer being published and can be difficult to come by. For those of you that are interested in obtaining these books at garage sales, thrift stores, and library book sales here is a consolidated list of some of the most prized FIAR titles. If you are looking for complete FIAR book lists please check out the lists compiled at HomeSchoolShare. They also have other lists grouped by geography, science, unit studies, lapbooks, and more.

Want to print this list? No problem. Just click here for a PDF version.

Note: Some formerly out-of-print books are now being republished as indicated.

Before FIAR

Yellow Ball ~ Bang, Molly

My Blue Boat ~Chris L. Demarest

The Quiet Way Home ~Bonnie Becker

The Red Carpet  ~Rex Parkin

Jenny’s Surprise Summer  ~Eugenie

FIAR Vol 1

Cranberry Thanksgiving  ~Devlin, Wende & Harry

Another Celebrated Dancing Bear  ~Scheffrin-Falk, Gladys  ~ (Now available at Purple House Press)

FIAR Vol 2

Giraffe That Walked to Paris   ~Milton, Nancy

Babar, To Duet or Not To Duet ~De Brunhoff

Down, Down the Mountain ~Credle, Ellis

All Those Secrets of the World ~Yolen, Jane

Gramma’s Walk ~Hines, Anna Grossnickle

FIAR Vol 3

Andy and the Circus ~Credle, Ellis

The Wild Horses of Sweet Briar  ~Kinsey-Warnock, Natalie

Henry the Castaway ~Taylor, Mark

Warm as Wool ~Sanders, Scott Russell   ~(Now available at Wooster Book Company )

FIAR Vol 4

Arabella ~Orr, Wendy

Cowboy Charlie ~Winter, Jeanette

Hanna’s Cold Winter ~Marx, Trish

Higgins Bend Song and Dance   ~Martin, Jacqueline Briggs

The Hatmaker’s Sign   ~Fleming, Candace


The Rag Coat

We had  a wonderful time rowing The Rag Coat. Although we read this book several times over the course of two weeks I could not manage to get through it once without tearing up a bit. It was beautifully written and the illustrations are vibrant.


We made butter during the course of our study which has nearly replaced the purchase of butter at the store. My dear husband has decided that it is the perfect compliment to his homemade bread. So now we are not only blessed with the wonderful wafting aroma of bread baking, we are also privy to the “butter dance” as he excitedly shakes the cream past it’s frothy prime and into a nice yellow clump of butter.

While we did have lofty ideas of putting together a quilt we decided to settle for making rag dolls as Minna does in the story. We made our dolls out of knit gloves by cutting off all but the middle two fingers for legs and then sewing it together.

I was quite impressed with Hailey’s manual dexterity with a needle and thread. Just a couple of months ago I recall trying to explain cross stitch with one of those plastic needle kits that you purchase at the craft store. We both ended up getting frustrated and decided to put it away. So when she managed to sew the arms together and then attached them to the body I was quite proud of how well she did.



I did purchase the Hands of a Child project pack to go with this book, however the majority of the items within the pack require answers to be filled in. While perfectly suitable for children a bit older it did not suit our needs at this time.

As Minna’s father was a coal miner in Appalachia I took the opportunity to discuss the formation of coal. We decided to place our story disk on West Virginia after discussing where the Appalachian Mountains were as well as our top coal producing states.

We also covered three of the basic formations of rocks – igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic. Hailey had a difficult time understanding the word “sedimentary” so I filled a glass with water and sprinkled in some sand, dirt, and leaves. We watched it settle on the bottom and discussed how it could eventually turn to rock.

We also made igneous rocks by watching our chocolate “lava” cool off. Although we did speed up the cooling process by popping it in the freezer!

In order to solidify her understanding of the variations of rocks how the earth is constantly changing, I explained the rock cycle. I tried to find a basic illustration, but all of the pictures seemed to be too complex for the early elementary level. I ended up making my own illustration for her to color and labels to place . Please feel free to download it for your own personal use.


Owl Moon and Unit Study

This turned mostly into a Unit Study on Owls, but we did use the Five in a Row title Owl Moon as well as HomeschoolShare title Owl Babies to implement our owl study. HSS also has Owl Moon lapbook graphics here. Owls weren’t actually on the schedule to study at all, but the local park was having a ranger talk with a rescued non-releasable barred owl named Merlin. Of course I decided to work it in to the schedule!

Since I don’t actually have the FIAR volume that Owl Moon is covered in I ended up just doing things my own way. Owl Moon is really a beautiful book. We also got the huge library storytelling book for Owl Babies. Charlie loved the life-size pictures! I thought about dissecting owl pellets for a minute, but decided that we would push that somewhat icky discovery off until another year. We used this online owl pellet dissection instead.

The cover page shows a graphic from HSS on the Owl Babies lesson plan page. Hailey wanted it to be a screech owl so she changed the coloration a bit and wrote the sound that a screech owl makes. You can hear owl sounds here.


The inside shows a nocturnal animals flap book on the left with the different animals that the owl babies might have heard during the night. The right flap has a book where Hailey illustrated the materials needed to make a nest using construction paper and crayons. The middle shows a food chain chart the we used from Teacher Created Resources. This was a terrific purchase! While it is geared toward a classroom setting it was chock full of ideas and resources that we easy to work with and put together. It has ideas for interactive plays, story telling, dissecting owl pellets, and more.  The right middle is a flap book that opens to show three of the animals that make up an owl’s diet.


The second side of the folder shows a matchbook with the definition of nocturnal and cursive handwriting copywork on the left flap. The right flap has a layer book with several owl poems and songs from HSS. The middle shows a printout on the preservation of owls from Teacher Created Resources.


The middle flap opens to show a graph with the different heights of several owls, also from Teacher Created Resources. Hailey is the first column.


Inside the flap there is a book with three different types of owls and the sounds that they make as well as a flap book about owls and their habits.


Storm in the Night Lapbook

So here is our completed lapbook for our the Storm in the Night. We used some materials from Homeschool Share, but for the most part I made my own graphics for this one. Feel free to click on the links and download them for your own personal not-for-profit use.

The left flap involved a discussion on how our bodies change as well as how our roles change as we get older. I used a cute picture that I found here. The right flap has a Venn diagram depicting the characteristics of Grandfather and Thomas and a Vocabulary flap book with pictures for the vocabulary words errands, bough, and mandarin. We added in the word babbling and wrote “blah, blah, blah” under the flap. In the middle you can see our introduction to onomatopoeia. Hailey now shouts out “Onomatopoeia” every time she recognizes one in a book. You can get those graphics here. We made a facial expressions booklet. And the book about our listening walk.

The second side of the folder shows a large diagram of the Water cycle in the middle. The cloud booklet opens up and shows the water droplets that a cloud is made of. Then the raindrops were drawn directly on the folder. The left flap has a pocket with pictures of 4 different cloud types.  I got the cloud pictures here.The pocket on the right flap is holding cloud charts that we used each day to see if we could predict the weather by observing the clouds.

On the back cover is the painting that Hailey did with a dark background.

To find out more in depth about what we did during the week check out the previous post! Next week we will be doing BATS!

A Storm in the Night

This past week we rowed Five in a Row (FIAR) title A Storm in the Night. I decided to go ahead and row this book since we had been inundated with thunderstorms the previous several weeks. Of course, as soon as we started we had nothing but sunny skies!

A Storm in the Night proved to be a bit more difficult at first than our first FIAR book The Story About Ping. The book was mostly dialogue and in order to help the kids follow the book a bit easier I used different voices for the characters.

We discussed the use of onomatopoeia for the first time. I realized that we had a wonderful supplemental book for this discussion called The Listening Walk by Paul Showers. Every single page has a new sound that the young girl hears as she goes on her listening walk with her father. We decided to go on our own listening walk and talk about the different sounds that we could hear. Then we figured out how we could make those sounds into words and made our own book .

We discussed how we know people are feeling by the expressions they have on their face. We made a mini booklet drawing the characteristics of different facial expressions.  I also dug out some old pictures so that Hailey could note the changes as people get older.

For science we focused in on the Water Cycle. We made our model of earth and its atmosphere by taking a plate of water and placing it in one side of a large tupperware container. We closed the top and placed a heat lamp above the side of the tupperware with the water to represent the sun. On the opposite side we placed a bag of ice cubes to represent the cold air in the upper atmosphere. As the lamp (sun) heated the water the water evaporated (turned to water vapor) and condensed  (formed a cloud) as it rose and hit the bag of ice (cold air) on the opposite side. Once the water droplets became large enough they fell (rained) back to the plate (ground).

We also decided to learn more about clouds. We learned four of the basic types of clouds – Stratus, Cumulus, Cirrus, and Nimbus. I found some great pictures of clouds here, Royalty free! We charted what clouds we saw in the morning and guessed what type of weather we would see that afternoon. In the afternoon we would check the weather again to see if we were right. I also had Hailey make a rain gauge out of an old peanut butter jar and a ruler. I took the top off of the jar, turned it upside-down and filled it with spare change to weight it down. Then I taped it with packing tape to the bottom of the jar to keep it from blowing away.

These are some of the graphics that I created while doing the lapbook for A Storm in the Night. Please feel free to download and use for your own personal, not-for-profit, use.


Facial Expressions Booklet

Cloud Charting

Water Cycle

Cloud Types – Thanks to Carl Wozniak for the great cloud pics on this graphic. You can get more here free for educational purposes.

I will be posting pictures of our completed lapbook in the next couple of days.

Ping Lapbook

So here is the lapbook that we completed on the Story About Ping. We used a Hands of a Child Project Pack on the Story About Ping as well as resources from Enchanted Learning, Homeschool Share, and our local library!

The left flap contains a book with a map of the world where Hailey colored in the country of China. It also has a pocket with several pictures of different homes of people that live in China.

Inside there is a model of the sun showing that it rises in the east and sets in the west on the left. The middle has a colored picture of China’s flag at the top, a picture of the junk boat that Ping lived on, and a picture of the Yangtze River that Hailey stamped with the total number of family members that Ping had. The right flap breaks down the number of family members that Ping had.

On the second side of the folder we made a large diagram of the lifecycle of a duck using pictures we copied from a library book. The left and right flaps contain pictures of a duck and a cormorant (possibly the diving ducks from the story) to show the differences. The yellow duck shows the names of different types of ducks (diving, dabbling, etc).

The back flap contains the pocket with the story order pictures and a diagram of the anatomy of a duck (again from a library book). We also added on a page that showed our experiment on which objects would float or sink in water.

The final section has a dictation where Hailey made up her own story about Ping.

Ta Da!

The Story About Ping

This was the first book that we did with Five in a Row and I couldn’t believe how much fun we had.

For Literature we discussed what a Classic story is. We made a timeline so that the kids could see how long ago the book was written (1933). We put up pictures of the family members on the year each was born. Now Hailey says hello to everyone on the way down the stairs! We also talked about the difference between Fiction and non-fiction books and reviewed a couple of unfamiliar vocabulary words.

We all learned a lot about China too. We went through several extra books from the library discussing Chinese culture and the differences of a lifestyle in China and that of America. We also learned that the Yangtze River that Ping lived on is the third longest river in the world! We even managed to cook a Chinese meal from scratch – Egg drop soup, Potstickers, veggie stirfry, and almond tea cakes for dessert. Yum! Of course, the table was lit with Chinese lanterns.

For Science we did a few experiments on bouyancy since the boy in the boat uses a barrel as a flotation device. The kids had a blast collecting all sorts of objects and guessing whether the would sink or float before chucking them into the sink. We also learned that some objects will either sink or float depending on their shape – solid ball vs. boat shape, whether they were filled with air, or saturated with water.

We discussed all of the different types of ducks (diving, dabbling, whistling, sea, stiff-tailed) and what made them different. Also reviewed how ducks swim, what they eat, their lifecycle, and parts of a duck. Then we went to feed the ducks and got to see everything up close. There were a couple of young ducklings old enough to be away from Mama duck and there were quite a few Canadian geese there too, so we got to see the differences between the birds.

In order for Hailey to visualize just how many ducks Ping had in his family we printed out a picture of the Yangtze River and Hailey used a small duck stamp to stamp all 67 members of Ping’s family.

Finally we did some story sequencing cards and Hailey dictated to me her own Story About Ping. Which really followed more along her own interests, but that of course did make it her very own!