Friday, February 7, 2020
Seeking Signs of Spring
by Buffy Silverman
32 pages; ages 4-9
Millbrook Press, 2020
themes: changing seasons, spring, nonfiction, STEAM
On a drip-droppy, slip-sloppy, snow-melting day…
Opening this book is like stepping into a seasonal change. It begins with ice-encased twigs and salamanders on snow and ends with muddy splatters and buds growing.
What I like about this book: The language! It’s lyrical and fun to read. Lots of verbs: icicles drip; chickadees sip. I like the photos – they take us winter-bound readers out of our dreary gray day and into the woods where leaves and twigs cover the ground and snow only exists in patches. Where the sky is blue and grass is green beneath the melting snow. You can almost smell the mud!
And there is Back Matter! I am a big fan of back matter. Here, in the last pages, you can read more about the animals mentioned, the physical aspects of snow, mist, drifts, lake thaw… and where the snow goes when it melts. There is a brief glossary and some great titles for kids who want to find more fun books about spring emerging.
One Question for Buffy:
Archimedes: What inspired you to write about emerging spring?
It was a drip droppy
snow melting day
And then I jotted down a few images: Mist rises in the air, boots sink in the slush, puddles grow on the lake, followed by some questions to myself: Is there a story here? Or just a poem? followed by more notes: dog wet from snout to tail (it really must have been a slushy day!) and writing on the snow (dog/deer tracks) turn to slippery sloppery.
Beyond the Books:
Pay attention to how the season is changing around you. Maybe you notice that there are more birds at the feeder, or different birds. Maybe the sky looks different than it did last month. What do you notice?
Take photos over the next six weeks and make a scrapbook showing how spring emerges where you live.
Make a map showing where snow melts first in your neighborhood, and where the first buds show.
Become a citizen scientist. Join Project Budburst to help scientists document when flowers bloom.
Buffy is a member of #STEAMTeam2020. You can find out more about her at her website.
Today we're joining Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event where bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's website. Review copy provided by the publisher.