Other Free Encyclopedias » Brief Biographies » Biographies: Barbara Barbieri McGrath (1953–) Biography - Personal to Fridtjof Nansen (1861–1930) Biography

Barbara Barbieri McGrath (1953–) Biography - Personal, Career, Member, Honors Awards, Writings, Sidelights

book counting review brand

Born 1953, in Wellesley, MA; Education: Laseil College, B.A. Religion: Roman Catholic. Hobbies and other interests: Surfcasting, SCUBA diving, collecting "sea-pottery."

Career

Writer. Also worked as preschool teacher.

Member

Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators.

Honors Awards

Teachers' Choice Award, 1994, and Pick of the List citation, American Bookseller's Association, both for The M&M's Brand Chocolate Candies Counting Book.

Writings

The M&M's Brand Chocolate Candies Counting Book, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 1994.

More M&M Math, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1998.

The Cheerios Counting Book, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1998.

Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Counting Board Book, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1998.

Hershey's Kisses: Counting Board Book, Corp Board Books, 1998.

The Baseball Counting Book, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1999.

The Cheerios Counting Book: 1, 2, 3 (board book), illustrated by Frank Mazolla, Cartwheel Books, 2000.

Skittles Riddles Math, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2000.

The M&M's Brand Valentine Book, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2000.

Necco Sweethearts Be My Valentine Book, HarperFestival (New York, NY), 2000.

Kellogg's Froot Loops! Counting Fun Book, Mariposa, 2000.

Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Counting Fun Book, HarperFestival (New York, NY), 2000.

The M&M's Brand Halloween Treat Book, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2000.

The M&M's Brand Christmas Gift Book, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2000.

Kellogg's Froot Loops Color Fun Book, HarperFestival (New York, NY), 2001.

The M&M's Brand Birthday Book, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2001.

The M&M's Brand Easter Egg Hunt, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2001

The M&M's Brand Color Pattern Book, illustrated by Roger Glass, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2002.

The M&M's Brand All-American Parade Book, illustrated by Peggy Tagel, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2003.

I Love Words, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2003.

The M&M's Count-to-One Hundred Book, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2003.

(With Peter Alderman) Soccer Counts!, illustrated by Paul Estrada, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2003.

The M&M's Brand Addition Book, Charlesbridge (Water-town, MA), 2004.

M&M's Count around the Circle, Charlesbridge (Water-town, MA), 2004.

The Little Green Witch, illustrated by Martha Alexander, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2005.

The M&M's Brand Subtraction Book, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2005.

Contributor to local newspapers.

Some of McGrath's titles have been published in bilingual English/Spanish editions.

Sidelights

Barbara Barbieri McGrath studied early education in college, and her books reflect both her sense of fun and her desire to help young learners grasp concepts such as counting, addition, subtraction, and colors. The M&M's Brand Chocolate Candies Counting Book was considered such a valuable addition to educational titles that it was selected for a Teacher's Choice Award. Incorporating popular candies and cereals into their text, McGrath's books endeavor to make learning math skills fun for young readers.

Though McGrath started her counting books using M&M's chocolate candies, her books incorporate diminutive delicacies such as Cheerios, Goldfish crackers, and Froot Loops as well. Of The Cheerios Counting Book, Hazel Rochman noted in Booklist that, "As young preschoolers munch and play and tally, they will find a delicious world they recognize in a book."

Other math titles created by McGrath use sports as their topic. In The Baseball Counting Book she incorporates rhyme and rhythm as well as baseball themes to teach numbers one through twenty. "The book is null of counting opportunities and is a springboard for many other learning experiences," wrote AnneMarie Hornyak in Teaching Children Mathematics. With Peter Alderman, McGrath wrote Soccer Counts!, a book that teaches counting drills and the history of soccer at the same time. "This soccer-centered counting book is sure to be a winner with fans young and old," assured a Kirkus Reviews contributor. Noting that the reading level may be too easy for many beginning soccer players, Blair Christolon explained in School Library Journal that English-as-a-second-language "students may be the best audience for this mixture." However, Sarah Olague, writing in Teaching Children Mathematics, thought that "both teachers and their students will learn a lot about soccer from this book."

Aside from her books on counting and mathematics, McGrath has penned a book on phonics, I Love Words, and a picture book telling the story of "The Little Red Hen" with a new cast of characters. In The Little Green Witch the witch of the title wants her friends to help her make a pumpkin pie, but the ghost, the bat, and the gremlin are all too busy to help. Though the story follows the traditional tale of the little red hen, right up to the witch's refusal to share the results of her hard work, it has an additional twist at the end, "one that will make readers laugh out loud," promised Susan Weitz in School Library Journal.

McGrath once told SATA: "I taught preschool for sixteen years while writing public-interest articles for local newspapers. Then I focused on making learning fun—using a 'fun' subject to make the lesson memorable. I use brand-name products to teach hands-on lessons."

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, October 1, 1998, Hazel Rochman, review of The Cheerios Counting Book, p. 333; February 15, 1999, Kathy Broderick, review of The Baseball Counting Book, p. 1072.

Canadian Review of Materials, May 21, 1999, review of The Cheerios Counting Book; May 26, 2000, review of The Cheerios Counting Book.

Kirkus Reviews, June 15, 2003, review of Soccer Counts!, p. 861; June 15, 2005, review of The Little Green Witch, p. 687.

Publishers Weekly, June 6, 1994, review of The M&M's Brand Chocolate Candies Counting Book, p. 64; November 16, 1998, review of More M&M's Brand Echoing the story of the Little Red Hen, The Little Green Witch finds a young witch getting few offers of help in making the pumpkin pie everyone want to nibble on. (Illustration by Martha Alexander.)Chocolate Candies Math, p. 77; April 24, 2000, review of The Cheerios Counting Book, p. 92; December 11, 2000, "Volumes of Valentines," p. 86; June 25, 2001, review of Kellogg's Froot Loops Color Fun Book, p. 75; February 11, 2002, review of The M&M's Brand Color Pattern Book, p. 189; August 11, 2003, review of The M&M's Count-to-One Hundred Book, p. 281.

School Library Journal, September, 1998, p. 194; April, 2001, Ilene Abramson, review of Skittles Riddles Math, p. 132; September, 2003, Blair Christolon, review of Soccer Counts!, p. 202; January, 2004, Tali Balas, review of I Love Words, p. 120; August, 2005, Susan Weitz, review of The Little Green Witch, p. 100.

Science Books &Film, November, 2003, review of The M&M's Count to One Hundred Book, p. 273; July-August, 2005, Charles Mercer, review of The M&M's Subtraction Book, p. 168.

Teaching Children Mathematics, December, 1999, Anne-Marie Hornyak, review of The Baseball Counting Book, p. 266; September, 2004, Sarah Olague, review of Soccer Counts! p. 110.

ONLINE

Barbara McGrath Home Page, http://www.barbaramcgrath.com (March 23, 2006).

Patrick McGrath Biography [next]

User Comments

Your email address will be altered so spam harvesting bots can't read it easily.
Hide my email completely instead?

Cancel or

Vote down Vote up

about 5 years ago

Barbara's husband is a great guy!!!