Friday, October 9, 2020

Everything is Connected

This month I’m diving into books about Earth’s ecosystems, starting with this one…

Biomes: Discover the Earth’s Ecosystems with Environmental Science Activities for Kids
by Donna Latham ; illus by Tim Casteel
128 pages; ages 9-13
Nomad Press, 2019

A biome is a life zone, with a distinctive climate and geology, specific water resources, and its own biodiversity. Some scientists say there are five biomes, others list six. Author Donna Latham presents nine: coniferous forest, deciduous forest, tropical rainforest, desert, mountains, temperate grassland, tropical savanna, tundra, and ocean. Regardless of how you sort them, the big point is that they are all connected, and a disaster that takes place in one biome (such as an oil spill) often affects other biomes.

What I like about this book: Each chapter presents a biome and the ecosystems within that biome. Readers get into soils, food chains, and plant and animal adaptations. There are fun sidebars with tidbits, QR codes to links (all links are listed at the back), and plenty of hands-on stuff to explore. Experiment with erosion, study the impact of salt on seed germination, make a terrarium, and explore your home turf. Oh yeah – and make sure to keep a notebook like a scientist does.

There are also photos and (yay!) comics. The tone is fun and informal while being informational. Back matter contains a glossary and metric conversion chart. This is a great “text” for kids who want to learn at home this fall and winter.

Thanks for dropping by today. On Monday we'll be hanging out at Marvelous Middle Grade Monday with other  bloggers. It's over at Greg Pattridge's blog, Always in the Middle, so hop over to see what other people are reading. Review copy provided by the publisher.


  1. Nomad puts out some great non-fiction titles and this one sounds great. I enjoy how they start each chapter out with a comic panel. Thanks for including this title on MMGM.

  2. I think I would find this book fascinating! I didn't know anything about biomes and the ecosystems that exist in each one. What a great book that makes science really interesting!

  3. I'm definitely going to check this one out. I am working on a project for which this would be greatly helpful. Thanks for telling me about it.

  4. What a neat book! Biomes are certainly fascinating—that was always an interesting unit in science class! I love the QR codes, hands-on activities, and comics—those are all so fun! Thanks for the great review!

  5. I like that there are activities and comics. When my kids were younger, we did a science curriculum with a lot of comics, and they just loved it.
    The cover is really enticing as well!