Autumn, Earth Day, English Language Arts, spring, Summer, Weather, Winter

A Year with Mama Earth by Rebecca Grabill

51+ugswiG1L._SY497_BO1,204,203,200_

Back of Book:
In September, Mama Earth sighs out the first autumn frost, which crunches under children’s feet. Mama Earth looks after nature’s plants and animals throughout the year—singing lullabies to fat bears in the fall, dressing evergreens in icicles in winter, and waking up the crocuses in spring. And in the summer, Mama Earth sends warm sunbeams to her beloved children, so they can play outside and enjoy the amazing world around them.
My Review:
I received a copy of this picture book from Eerdmans Books For Young Readers in exchange for an honest review.
“A Year with Mama Earth” is a stunning lyrical story that allows readers to see the different beauty and changes throughout one calendar year. The book begins in September and flows through each month describing the differences in the earth as the season’s change. The text flows smoothly and effortlessly. I loved how the use of figurative language allows readers to make positive connections between the similarities and differences of each passing month.
I live and teach in Southern California, our environment is filled with dessert terrain and wildlife. I loved using this story to teach my students that seasons look different in different parts of the United States. I can also see myself using this book as a focus on the different figurate language and how to properly use it in a text. The illustrations by Rebecca Green are nothing short of breathtaking! Each illustration is perfectly crafted to match what the text is describing. The details truly bring the story to life and allow readers to visualize how seasons look in other areas.
The notes in the back of the book from the author and illustrator give the story a very well-rounded and personal feeling. I could tell as a reader that this book was a true labor of love for both of them.
“A Year With Mama Earth” is a true gem and a book that should definitely be a part of elementary and elementary libraries. It is a story that not only teaches us to appreciate the earth but to also love it as well.
Ages 5 and up
40 Pages

Gardens and plants, Grandparents, spring

When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree by Jamie L.B. Deenihan

51aowQAXxAL._SX388_BO1,204,203,200_

Back of Book:
“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” In this imaginative take on that popular saying, a child is surprised (and disappointed) to receive a lemon tree from Grandma for her birthday. After all, she DID ask for a new gadget! But when she follows the narrator’s careful—and funny—instructions, she discovers that the tree might be exactly what she wanted after all.
My Review:
I received a copy of this picture book from Sterling Press in exchange for an honest review.
I was thrilled to read such a touching and beautiful story from debut author Jamie L. B. Deeniham. The story follows a little girl who receives a unique gift of a lemon tree from her grandma. Instead of being disappointed, the girl turns lemons into lemonade and finds a way to bring her neighborhood together. This story ties in so many messages including respect for elders, hard work, patience, and placing others before yourself. I loved how the end of the story shows the young girl buying something that everyone can enjoy. The text is written in a second person narrative which keeps readers engaged throughout the story. The illustrations by Lorraine Rocha are whimsical and warm. The details within the pages are amazing and include a diverse group of children playing and learning together. The special note from the author about the cancer ribbons in the pages especially touched my heart. My favorite illustration is the one with all the children placing their toys and gadgets down to work in the garden.
This is a beautiful story that is perfect for any garden or spring unit.
Ages 5 and up
32 Pages

spring

A New Beginning: Celebrating the Spring Equinox Wendy Pfeffer

51shjkT3PJL._SX448_BO1,204,203,200_

 

Back of Book:

 

The spring equinox signals the time of year when the days are getting longer, the growing season has begun, and animals give birth to their young. With accessible, lyrical prose and vibrant illustrations, this book explains the science behind spring and shows how the annual rebirth of Earth has been celebrated by various cultures throughout the ages and the world.

 

My Review:

 

I love reading this beautifully written and illustrated story that shares the changes that occur springtime. I love that readers get to learn about the science behind the changes in spring. The story explains to readers how the Spring Equinox happens.  This story also discusses culture and holidays that occur in spring like Chinse New Year, the Indian holiday of Holi, or Pancake Week in Russia. Each page is illustrated with lovely details to show how each holiday is celebrated in spring. This story is an excellent recourse to teach children about diverse holidays in the springtime. The back of the book has several hands on activities that can be shared in classrooms or at home.

 

Ages 5 and up

 

40 Pages

Click Here to Find on Amazon

spring

In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb by Marion Dane Bauer

61CGIS9sYSL._SX464_BO1,204,203,200_

Back of Book:

In this exuberant, rhythmic story, March, personified as a lion, enters a boy’s cozy home and leaves a trail of snow flurries and muddy footprints. The boy calmly observes the pouncing, howling, growling lion until in comes the lamb on the crest of a huge sneeze.

Escorted by grass, flowers, sunshine, showers, and animal babies, the lamb brings forth spring.
My Review:
I love reading this story every year on the first day of March. It is the perfect introduction to spring and the change of weather. The rhyming text makes it easy for young audiences to follow along with. My preschoolers loved hearing about how the lion roars. I can see using this book in upper elementary for a study on figurative language. It is filled with examples that describe the aspects of weather. The illustrations are lovely and bring the lion and the lamb to life. A great read aloud.
Ages 5 and up
32 Pages

Click Here to Find on Amazon