Friday, June 27, 2014
Into the Meadow with Mouse
by Chad Wallace
32 pages; ages 3-8
Dawn Publications, 2014
"One day a little meadow mouse was crawling through a field
Staring in amazement at the wonders it revealed.
The grassy open meadow put his courage to the test,
For he had never left the comfort of his mother's nest."
And so begins the adventures, and coming-of-age tale, of a meadow mouse. The illustrations give us a close-up view of life in the meadow. We meet a spider and honeybee, and watch a caterpillar metamorphose into a chrysalis. But all is not fun and games in the meadow; there are predators to avoid! I love the back matter, where the author delves into such things as whether - and how - animals talk, what altruism looks like in the animal world, and what meadows are.
Beyond the book: Take a field trip to a meadow. How do you find a meadow? Look for any field habitat that is mostly grass and other non-woody plants... and around here that means hay fields. As you explore your meadow, look for some of the animals that mouse found on his wandering. Take along a notebook and some colored pencils so you can draw some of the plants you find.
One square foot of meadow. Measure out a square foot in your meadow - that's 12 inches by 12 inches - and write down everything you find in that area. You'll probably need more than one sheet of paper! And you'll need to get on your knees so you can get a close look at the ground.
Grow your own meadow. You don't need a lot of space - just a few sunny square feet of lawn near the edge that you don't want to mow any more. The wild flowers and open space will attract birds and other wild life that you can watch. Here's some meadow-growing ideas.
STEM Friday to see what other science books and resources bloggers are sharing. Review copy provided by publisher.