themes for the day: trees, nature, nonfiction
by Anthony D. Fredericks; illus. by Chad Wallace
32 pages; ages 3-8
Dawn Publications, 2017
Creeping, hopping, zipping
Throughout the redwoods green
Are many different creatures
Who are very seldom seen.
Waaaay up, high in the world's tallest trees is an entire world teeming with life. Most people don't get to see the animals who live in those tall, tall trees - but this book takes you on a field trip into that world.
There are lots of animals up there, living at skyscraper heights: eagles, bats, owls, salamanders. From one to ten, the author introduces us to some of the residents of the redwood tree.
What I like about this book: There are "hidden" animals on each page. For example, when our attention is directed to the slimy banana slugs, will we see the other animal up there in the tree? There's even a "find the hidden animals" challenge in the back matter - Yes! there is back matter! There is also additional information about the redwoods and some STEAM activities in the back matter.
by Patricia Daniels
160 pages; ages 8-12
National Geographic Children's Books, 2017
This is a tree-mendous field guide, perfect for tree-huggers of any age. Introductory pages include "what is a tree?" and give a quick lesson on how to get to know leaves - as well as a warning about poison ivy so you don't accidentally pick any of those leaves for your collection. There are plenty of tree entries, each with a photo of the entire tree and close-up of leaf or needle, flowers, nuts, cones, or fruit. In addition to general information there are some fun facts.
Every so often there's a special feature that gives you a closer look at trees growth patters, flowers, seeds, or some other cool thing. One thing I wish they had included: photos of bark for each tree described - for those of us who go out tree-watching in winter.
Beyond the Books:
What's your state tree? Find a photo of it. Was it featured on a stamp? Find out here.
What sort of animals use the trees in your neighborhood? Adopt a tree and keep track of the birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles, and insects that live on it or gather food from it. Draw a picture of your tree - and make a map showing how to find it.
Become a tree bark-ologist. Find two trees with different kinds of bark. Jot down your observations of each tree trunk: is the bark smooth or rough? is there a pattern? Make a bark rubbing and tape it in your field notebook. Or take photos.
Today we're joining the STEM Friday roundup - and we're also joining others over at 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 Books. Review copies from the publisher.