Spring brings out the scientist in me (ha, you all laugh. When am I not in science girl mode?)
I am a botanist/ecologist/microbiologist/nature loving curious type from the word go. But, this time of year I get serious about our nature learning and head out into the deep forest of the local bookstore for some non-library type nature books that won’t make it onto our shelves for a long time because we’re too busy using them on a daily basis.
So, I head to Blue Heron Books in Comox with a piece of paper pinned to my shirt to remind me of why I often bomb in the nature book department:
- Tip 361 when it comes to non-fiction books for the tiny person crowd: age-appropriate is key.
I often forget to check my list and get lost in the cool books that will be totally great when the tiny person is 10. They go home with us and $50 later I’m looking at her as she pitches it across the room like “why did I bother” and she’s looking at me like “seriously mom, why DID you bother?”
Finally, some nature books that our daughter could connect with.
We began with Hodge’s very cool Who Lives Here series and picked the Forest Animals book for starters.
Illustrated by Pat Stephens, this is one of those nature books that hooks kids because the artistry is right at their level. Not to say it looks like a 4-year-old drew it. But, there are plenty of kid-sized creatures to make tiny people feel like they can learn about bears, cougars and other large animals without being scared.
As a mom, I love that I can give our daughter a peek into the boreal forest, with lots of familiar animal faces and there’s lots of good, new information to learn while not being eye-glazing.
After that, we had to go looking for more and found the Whales book in Hodge’s Wildlife series.
Also illustrated by Stephens (they are an awesome pair), this book rated for kids ages 5 to 10 is the perfect introduction to our giant ocean friends. There are whale tips, whale facts, conservation reminders and a whole lot of kid-friendly whale goodness that made us instantly want to head out and do some serious whale watching. This book is a great companion for families doing some exploring or vacationing on Vancouver Island or the coast of British Columbia too as it gives a gentle, not-too-heady peek into the lives of these amazing creatures.
Looking for books on bears, we then discovered Swanson’s Welcome to the World of series and picked up the Spirit Bears book.
Our daughter is totally fascinated by these bears and the mysterious legend that follows them. But, the books we found before Swanson’s were way over her head. This whole series is very accessible and full of GORGEOUS photography that make the Spirit Bear a very cool childhood adventure.
Swanson is a prolific Canadian wildlife writer, with dozens of titles under her belt and I am incredibly impressed by her ability to plug kids in to the natural world.
We’ll be reading Hodge’s and Swanson’s books for years to come.
AND YOU CAN TOO. I have copies of all three books reviewed today to give away. Just leave us a comment on today’s post and you’ll go into the drawing to win one. As always, we pick the winners Pin-the-tail-on-the-commenter style and no one who works for Our Big Earth Media Co. (or is related to us) is eligible to win.
We had a whole whack of books to give away from the Community Gardens grand opening at the Compost Education Centre. The winners are: Louisa, Polly, Another Robin and Kelly.
Congratulations!!! The books will go in the mail to you on Monday!
About the Author (Author Profile)Robin Rivers is Our Big Earth’s Publisher and Sr. Partner. Able to survive on coffee alone. Often can be found leaping tall buildings with the help of great friends. Predisposed to odd hats and the color orange. In love with imagination, her kids and that crazy guy who married her.
Sites That Link to this Post
- Guides for Tiny Explorers (giveaway) | Our Big Earth | May 16, 2009