Category Archives: Discovery

Before After

“Before After”

Before After, a wordless book of opposites, elevates opposite storytelling to another level. This book gives readers pause to think as they digest the cause and effect relationship between the before and after pictures.

This nice thick book offers lots of pairings to explore.

This book promotes creative components of nature, cause and effect, and originality.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: I like this book because it is not your typical opposite book and makes readers think about what happened that caused the after picture. This book would provide great discussions between child and caregiver as they read the pictures together.

TITLE: Before After

ILLUSTRATORS: Anne-Margot Ramstein and Matthias Arégui 

PUBLISHER: Candlewick Press, 2014


TOPIC(S): cause and effect

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: original, nature


1) Draw a picture of one of your favorite things in nature. This will be your before picture. Think about what different things can happen to your nature item. Pick one and draw your after picture. Share with a friend.

2) Let’s work backwards or do the reverse by first drawing the after picture and then drawing the before picture of another favorite nature item.

3) Pick a plant, animal, or tree. Next draw its life cycle in stages.


To learn more about author Anne-Margot Ramstein, visit:

To learn more about illustrator Matthias Arégui, visit:



In Puzzlers, readers encounter a parade of animals made from colorful collages of numbers. Readers search collages for a unique trait such as a upside down number, a pair of numbers, the tallest number, and a sequence.

In addition to finding the numbers that make up this frog, find all the numbers that are backward.

In this colorful fish, find a number pattern.

In the final spread, readers find all the unique traits in an animal that no one ever has before seen.

In the back of the book, answers to each puzzler are included as well as other games that can be found in each puzzler.

This story promotes creative components of imagination, parts to whole, and perspective.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: I like this book because readers use their creative and critical thinking skills to discover the numbers (parts) that make up the animals (whole). 

TITLE: Puzzlers

AUTHOR: Suse MacDonald


PUBLISHER: Dial Books for Young Readers, 1989


TOPIC(S): puzzles, animals, numbers

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: parts to whole, imagination, perspective


1) Draw your own puzzler using one of your favorite animals, a unique number characteristic, and numbers.

2) Draw a puzzler using a form of transportation such as a bike, car or train with letters of the alphabet.


To learn more about author Suse MacDonald, visit:

To learn more about illustrator Bill Oakes, visit:

Robyn Boid: Architect


Robyn Boid: Architect”

Robyn Boid lives on the ledge of the university’s architecture school. She wants to be an architect when she grows up so she listens and learns.

Before designing a nest, she asks herself questions to investigate. Are nests always best? What comes first: the nest or the egg?

She practices different nest-shaped designs such as a dome, a towering spire, cylinders, and pyramids. Robyn always asks herself: how will an egg fit.

Will Robyn find the answers to her questions and design the best nest for an egg?

At the back of the book are a glossary of architecture terms and teacher notes.

This story promotes creative components of curiosity, risk-taking, and creative problem solving.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: I like this book because the main character continually asks questions as she experiments with her designs.

TITLE: Robyn Boid: Architect

AUTHOR: Maree Coote


PUBLISHER: Melbournestyle Books, 2017


TOPIC(S): architecture, design process

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: curiosity, risk-taking, creative problem solving


1) After reading the book, which nest do you like best? What questions might you ask in order to better understand how to build this particular design? What types of materials and bonding agents can be used? Research answers to your questions. Using trial and error, experiment with different materials and bonding agents. Then build your favorite nest from the book.

2) Invent a new nest design that you think would be fit for an egg.


To learn more about author and illustrator Maree Coote, visit: