Category Archives: Nature

Mathematickles!

Mathematickles”

Mathematickles! offers a playful introduction to math concepts through a creative lens. Follow a girl and her cat through the seasons using addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, graphs and tables.

This story promotes creative components of imagination, flexible thinking, original, and perspective. FYI: This is not a how to book.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: First, I like this book because of the unusual title. It piqued my curiosity about what I would discover between the pages of this book. Also, inventing new words is a favorite pastime of mine. Second, the fun interplay between the concrete nouns, which describe each season and the introduction of basic math concepts allows young readers to think creatively.

TITLE: Mathematickles

POEMS by: Betsy Franco

ILLUSTRATOR: Steven Salerno

PUBLISHER: Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2003

AGE GROUP: 4-7

TOPIC(S): basic math concepts, seasons, creative thinking

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: imagination, flexible thinking, original, perspective

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Pick a holiday that you like to celebrate. Use three of the math concepts from the book to describe your holiday. Have someone guess your holiday. For example, pumpkin – seeds + sugar = pumpkin pie; dishes of food x laughter = family gathering; Thanksgiving

2) Create sensory chart for each season. For each season, list as many as you can think up for each sense. Choose items from the list to use with basic math concepts.

Autumn Winter Spring Summer
Tastes
Sounds
Sights
Touches
Smells

 

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about poet Betsy Franco, visit:

http://www.betsyfranco.com/index.htm

To learn more about illustrator Steven Salerno, visit:

https://www.stevensalerno.com/bio/

Drawn from Nature

Drawn from Nature”

Drawn from Nature, a beautifully crafted nonfiction picture book, combines illustrative text and artwork. Travel through a year of changing seasons with Helen Ahpornsiri’s art of transformed leaves, petals, and seeds into newly hatched ducklings, nut stashing squirrels, and bud-studded trees.

 

This story promotes creative components of nature, imagination, unique, parts to whole, and combination.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK:  As a fan of arranging items in an unexpected way, I appreciate Helen Ahpornsiri’s ability to envision the placement of pressed flowers and leaves to masterfully create animals. Her intricate artwork combined with interesting, in-depth explanations of nature, animals, and the seasons makes for a beautifully informative children’s book.

TITLE: Drawn From Nature

ILLUSTRATOR: Helen Ahpornsiri

PUBLISHER: Big Picture Press, 2018

AGE GROUP: 6-9

THEME(S)/TOPICS: nature, seasons, shapes

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: nature, imagination, combination, unique, parts to whole

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) What is your favorite season? List 10 reasons why it’s your favorite season. Use these reasons to create a song or poem that describes your season. In your song or poem, do not use the word of your chosen season. Instead, see if someone can guess what season you are writing about.

2) 

Illustrator Artist Helen Ahpornsiri uses white space to evoke wonder within her collages. What do you imagine when you see this owl?

3) Illustrator Artist Helen Ahpornsiri uses real flowers and foliage, which are foraged or grown, then preserved with traditional flower-pressing methods to create her art. To create a collage, pick an animal that lives in or near your town. Next, choose an unusual medium such as pasta noodles, beans, or pebbles. Sort out the different shapes and colors of your medium. Sketch out your animal design. Using your medium, arrange and rearrange pieces to create your animal collage.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about illustrator Helen Ahpornsiri, visit:

http://helenahpornsiri.com

To learn more about Helen Ahpornsiri’s art process, visit:

https://helenahpornsiri.com/about/

Meet My Family: Animal Babies and Their Families

Meet My Family: Animal Babies and Their Families”

Laura Purdie Salas’ nonfiction book, Meet My Family: Animal Babies and Their Families celebrates different family systems while informing about each animal.

   

Laysan albatross chick lives with two moms.

Chinstrap penguins are raised by two dads.

An elephant calf (baby) grows up with his mama in a herd of only female elephants.

When ladybugs are born they do not  like their parents.

Just like animals have all different types of families, humans do, too!

Backmatter presents a table explaining the language used for mother and father based on the animals’ origin and a world map to locate where the animals live.

This story promotes creative components of different perspectives, nature, and diversity.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK:  I like this book because kids can find their families in the animal kingdom while learning to appreciate other family types. Readers can see the similarities and differences of the words mother and father to compare it to their native language.

TITLE: Meet My Family: Animal Babies and Their Families

AUTHOR: Laura Purdie Salas

ILLUSTRATOR: Stephanie Fizer Coleman

PUBLISHER: Millbrook Press, 2018

AGE GROUP: 4-7

CONCEPTS: family, diversity, acceptance

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: different perspectives, diversity, nature

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) What is your definition of family? After reading the book, count the number of different family types. How is your family alike and different from the animal families?

2) Pick two animals from countries different than the country you live in. What are your animals’ families like? How would you say “family” in the language of the countries your animals live in?

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author Laura Purdie Salas, visit:

http://laurasalas.com/how-laura-became-a-writer/

To learn more about illustrator Stephanie Fizer Coleman, visit:

http://stephaniefizercoleman.com/artist-info/