This is what I learned from Planet Earth, Our Extraordinary World Up Close! by Matthew Murrie and Steve Murrie:
-The black ink the octopus sprays in the face of pursuers is believed to disrupt their sense of smell.
– One Dugong can devour a bed of seagrass the size of a soccer field in one day!
First published in 1971 long before concerns about the environment were common, Dr. Seuss penned The Lorax which warned against greed and unrestrained industrialization. This timeless tale is of the now remorseful “Once-Ler” who destroyed a pristine area that once flourished with fish, creatures and birds through his desire to “bigger.
True or False series by Melvin and Gilda Berger is a young science series in a fun question-and-answer format. My kids reviewed Storms and Birds and gave both a thumbs up. For ages 6-9.
11 Birthdays by Wendy Mass is an amusing read about the challenges of middle-school friendships with a “pay it forward” theme. As Amanda relives her 11th birthday with her best friend Leo, she gets the chance to learn about their shared family history, pursue the dreams she too scared to attempt, and help those around her. Maybe we all should get a Ground Hog day experience!
Lloyd Alexander’s The Remarkable Journey of Prince Jen reminds me of Percy Jackson but the zen version or even a more swashbuckling version of Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. For ages 8-14.
The circle of life thing. Yes. That is a hard lesson for anyone, much less a child and their beloved pet. And with a puppy, the circle of life will eventually come around. When this happens, I recommend this book, The Tenth Good Thing about Barney by Judith Viorst.
eBook, The Crystal Mountain, by Ruth Sanderson for ages 6-10. Sanderson combines folk tales from China and Norway in this lushly illustrated book. This is the perfect eBook for reluctant readers as it can be treated as a portable “book on tape” with rich language and gorgeous illustrations.
This is a fun word problem book featuring birds with problems in addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. This would be a fun book to use for the summer to sneak in a little math but in a really fun way. The sweet spot is 2nd to 3rd graders, but even my preschooler will enjoy this book if we do the problems together by drawing out rows of birds to solve multiplication and division which would be new for him.
Journey Home is an important Japanese American story about what happened after the Japanese Americans were released from internment camp and this is also Yoshiko Uchida’s own family story about overcoming barriers, perseverance, and ultimately, of forgiveness.