STEM Friday #Kidlit The Great Shark Rescue by Sandra Markle

For STEM Friday this week, we have a middle grade book,  The Great Shark Rescue: Saving the Whale Sharks by one of our favorite authors, Sandra Markle.

Whale sharks are not only the biggest fish in the world, but also the coolest sharks because they feed by vacuuming up tons of the smallest creatures in the water (see pages 18-19).  Unfortunately, along with many other fascinating creatures, their numbers are plummeting and they have recently become endangered.

Markle gives numbers and explicit reasons why the populations are in decline. Sometimes the sharks are caught is nets during legal fishing while at other times they are killed by people who fish for sharks illegally.  Climate change is also a factor.  Scientists want to try to help the sharks, but they know little about them. It is a race to learn about whale sharks before they disappear.

In the back matter we learn that wrote the book based on interviews with experts (see “Source Notes.”)  Sandra Markle makes a point of using only primary sources, if she can (see post about meeting her at the Tucson Book Festival.)

The Great Shark Rescue will thrill budding marine biologists as well as those interested in conserving endangered species.  Realistically, this title could work with upper elementary readers as well as middle grade. It could be a great addition to your shelf.

Related:

 

Age Range: 9 – 12 years
Series: Sandra Markle’s Science Discoveries
Publisher: Millbrook Press TM (October 1, 2019)
ISBN-10: 1541510410
ISBN-13: 978-1541510418

Disclosure: This book was provided by our local library. Also, I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at no extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.

Come visit the STEM Friday blog each week to find more great Science, Technology, Engineering and Math books.Opens in a new window Note: this is a new link as of 1/2019.

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge 2020 #nfpb2020

Did you know that Jeopardy winner James Holzhauer credits his success to reading children’s books, particularly nonfiction? Do you want to read more nonfiction picture books this year? Join us for the Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge 2020 hosted by Kid Lit Frenzy.

 

How to participate:

  1. Set a goal as to how many nonfiction picture books you want to read.

For example, I would like to read at least one new (from 2019 or 2020) nonfiction picture book per week.

You don’t have to chose new books. For example, you might want to read a series of books on a given topic you are researching, regardless of when they were published. I chose new books because as a writer I like to keep up with current trends. Reading new nonfiction picture books on a number of different topics helps.

2. Write about the book you read in a blog post or review it on GoodReads, which are both great ways to keep records of your progress.

3. Add your link to Wednesday posts at Kid Lit Frenzy, where you will likely find even more great nonfiction you will want to add to your TBR list.

See the sign up page for more details.

Let the reading begin!

Let us know if you are considering joining us.

 

Little Senses #Kidlit: This Beach is Loud!

Do you have any friends who know exactly what kind of picture book you’d like to read? I have a friend like that. She is my picture book concierge. This week she brought me This Beach is Loud! by Samantha Cotterill.

Falling in the realm of realistic fiction, this picture book captures the experience of a trip to the beach for a young boy with sensory issues. All the new sounds coupled with the weird texture of the sand overwhelms him. Fortunately, his dad understands and helps the boy soothe himself.

This Beach is Loud! allows readers young and old to glimpse what it is like to hear and feel too much. Also, young readers with sensory issues will be able to recognize and identify with someone who is like themselves. That is a rare experience.

Samantha Cotterill’s block print illustrations are amazing. The text flows over a two-page spread at times, showing visually what the boy is hearing. The experience becomes tangible. When he is having fun, she breaks a single page into a series of smaller, quieter moments, settling things down again.

On the back flap, Samantha Cotterill explains she is on the autism spectrum and she wishes there had been books like this when she was a child.  We can only add that we are glad that there finally are.

Age Range: 3 – 7 years
Publisher: Dial Books (June 18, 2019)
ISBN-10: 0525553452
ISBN-13: 978-0525553458

I’m adding this title to a list of children’s books about senses at Science Books for Kids. It seems an appropriate way to introduce the idea that everyone has senses, but not everyone experiences the world in the same way.

 

#Nonfiction Monday Hello Crochet Friends

At the end of the month on January 31, 2020 we’re participating in Multicultural Children’s Book Day. But  there are way too many wonderful multicultural/diverse books to limit ourselves to just one day.

Let’s get started with the inspiring picture book autobiography, Hello, Crochet Friends!: Making Art, Being Mindful, Giving Back: Do What Makes You Happy by Jonah Larson and Jennifer Larson, with photographs by Erin Harris.

 

Jonah Larson is a phenomenon. Born in Ethiopia, a family from Wisconsin, adopted him when he was an infant. Later he struggled at school until one day — at five years old — he picked up a crochet hook. Soon crocheting became his passion and it has changed his life. Now he says he wants to share the joy of crocheting with everyone.

Although this is an autobiography, Jonah tells one part of his story and his adoptive mother Jennifer Larson tells another part. The duel points of view are poignant.  Jonah also shares one crochet pattern (this is NOT a how-to book).

I was so impressed with the map that shows the location of all his crochet friends from around the world. He really is spreading the joy.

Hello Crochet Friends! is a one-of-a-kind book about a one-of-a-kind boy.  It might just inspire readers to find their own passions.

Related:

Jonah shares his projects on the Jonah’s Hands website. Check out the videos and see his enthusiam for yarn and crocheting for yourself.

Age Range: 5 – 12 years
Publisher: KWiL Publishing (July 23, 2019)
ISBN-10: 0999143700
ISBN-13: 978-0999143704

 

Disclosure:  I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at no extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.

Looking for more children’s nonfiction books? Try the Nonfiction Monday blog.