Last month I reviewed two books that focused on animal families. I'm revisiting the topic with a couple more. One is about how parents care for their young, and the other a tale about a little whale on a long journey.
Themes: animals, families, nature
by Heather L. Montgomery; illus. by Stephen Stone
32 pages; ages 3-7
Mommy and daddy bugs don't give good-morning kisses. They don't tie shoes or untangle hair. And bugs don't hug.
Every spread introduces something parent bugs "don't do", from playing peekaboo to serving eggs and toast. But when you turn the page ... you discover that, yes indeed, bug parents are just like human parents.
What I like about this book: I like the way Heather Montgomery uses compare-and-contrast to show the similarities and differences in parents. Maybe bugs don't bake birthday cakes, but they do make a cake for their babies. It's fun and best of all - surprising! The illustrations are cartoony and fun. And I LOVE the back matter (of course) - more about each of the insects featured in the book plus a note on scientific language. And a list of books to read for the naturally curious kids.
by Jo Weaver
32 pages; ages 3-7
Gray Whale led her baby out of the shallows and into the warm southern sea.
"Where are we going?" asked Little Whale.
"Follow me," said Gray Whale.
With that, we're off on a grand journey - a migration from the southern sea to the far north. There will be danger along the way, and wonderful sights, and perhaps an adventure or two. But always, there will be mama whale there to guide, comfort, and help Little Whale.
What I like about this book: I like the tale of a journey. It's Little Whale's first migration, so we see things new to him. And, as with any journey with kids, there's the "are we there yet" questions that pop up. And Little Whale gets tired - so what's a parent to do? Beyond the tale of whales and migration, this is a story grounded in the love a parent feels for her child. The monochromatic illustrations are soothing, and perfect for a bedtime read-aloud.
Beyond the books:
What kinds of things do your parents do for you? Do they tell bedtime stories? Give you rides to soccer practice? List three or four things. Now find out if there are any insect parents that do those sort of things - or other animal parents.
Do all whales migrate? Where do they come from - and where do they go? You might want to make a map to show some of these migrations.
Make your own monochromatic art using paint. All you need is one color plus black and white. Check out this video if you need more help with that.
STEM Friday, where you can discover other cool STEM books. We're also joining Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event where bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's website. She keeps an ever-growing list of Perfect Picture Books. Review copies provided by the publishers.