Friday, January 13, 2017

Listen to Our World

Listen to Our World
by Bill Martin & Michael Sampson; illus. by Melissa Sweet
40 pages; ages 4-8
Simon & Schuster Kids, 2016

themes: animals, nonfiction

In the morning, Mommy gives us wake up kisses and says, "Good morning, little one. Can you hear the sounds of our world?" 

Through the pages we visit different habitats and listen to the animals that live there: monkeys, parrots, gila monsters. Sometimes the sounds we hear are calls and songs, sometimes they are the clicks and thumps of movement.

What I like love about this book: The sounds. The diversity of featured creatures. The diversity of the mothers and children. The way the book ends with being tucked in and listening to hush, hush sounds. And then there's Melissa Sweet's art. I love collage art, and these illustrations fill me with joy.

I also like the back matter. For each animal there's information about where they can be found, what sort of habitat they live in, and a bit about their natural history.

Beyond the Book

Go on a listening hike. What sorts of noises so the animals in your neighborhood make? Go for a walk and... listen to the birds, cats, dogs, people, even the flies trapped inside on a winter day. Write down the sounds they make - or try to record them. Can you imitate their sounds?

Make some art! Use bits of left-over holiday wrapping paper and cards to create some animal collages of your own.

Listen to whale sounds here. You can learn more about Penguins and listen to their sounds here.

Today is Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event in which bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's site. She keeps an ever-growing list of Perfect Picture BooksReview F&G from publisher.


  1. I've got to see this one! I'm a fan of Martin and Sweet.

  2. Sue - thanks for highlighting this book. I love Sweet's artwork. I can't wait to get to the library.

  3. I thought I recognized Melissa Sweet's style. I love this encouragement to experience things/our world by listening.

  4. I really love the title of the book. What an exciting way to encourage kids to start listening to nature and all its beautiful sounds. I like Bill Martin and Melissa Sweet, so I know this book is a winner.

  5. Listen is a good topic. It is so hard to stop and listen. especially when our days are packed with activities. I love the art.