The Strongest Man in the World


The Strongest Man in the World: The Legend of Louis Cyr
by Lucie Papineau (Author) and Caroline Hamel (Illustrator)

Booktalk: North America, late nineteenth century: a little boy is born whose destiny will prove exceptional. Travelling across the Northeast, he will show extraordinary physical strength. Soon, his exploits will spread around the North American continent, then Europe, making him truly the strongest man in the world!

Snippet: Lost, Mr. Gagnon had sprained his ankle and couldn’t walk back to his horse and cart. Rather than running to the village for help, the boy picked him up and carried him on his shoulders to his cart. The man was so impressed that he immediately hired him.

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2017 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.

The Hidden Life of a Toad

Over at Growing with Science blog today we are featuring The Hidden Life of a Toad by biologist and photographer Doug Wechsler.

the-hidden-life-toad

Many books feature what we commonly call frogs, but hardly any concentrate on their less colorful, bumpy cousins the toads. The Hidden Life of a Toad brings deserved attention to these fascinating creatures. In addition to filling a neglected niche, the book has a great deal more going for it.

First of all, Wechsler went to great lengths to capture high quality images of every step in the toad life cycle, and his photographs are stellar. You can read about what he did to take the photos in the back matter.

Next, as a biologist, his facts are impeccable.

Finally, what is even better is that he has studied children’s literature and his writing is spot on, too. It is full of lively verbs.

One embryo wiggles.

It wriggles.

It jiggles about.

The main text concentrates on toad development and life cycle. Back matter is filled with supplemental information, including a glossary, toad facts, and suggestions for helping toads.

The Hidden Life of a Toad delivers all you can ask for in nonfiction and more. Share it with a budding naturalist today.

See Growing with Science for related activity suggestions.

 

Engineer Academy

Engineer Academy
by Steve Martin (Author)

Booktalk: Practical projects, each carefully designed to introduce the kinds of skills required by real-life engineers, help kids pick up the basics in a fun, hands-on way. Packed full of great illustrations, fun facts, and absorbing activities, it guides readers through each strand of engineering science — Mechanics, Aerospace, Robotics, Energy, and Materials.

Design a robot, learn how to construct a simple car, create levers and pulleys, build paper planes, plus many other educational and inspirational activities — the sky’s the limit!

Snippet:

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2017 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.

This Book Stinks!

This Book Stinks!
written by Sarah Wassner Flynn
2017 (National Geographic Kids)
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher

People around the world daily throw away roughly enough trash to fill ten Empire State buildings. 

A book about garbage? Initially you might think that’s a stinky idea. But here’s the thing: What else could you write about that affects everyone as much as this does? All of us create waste and contribute to landfills. That levels the playing field when it comes to background knowledge too, so readers of all abilities can add to discussions.

The facts presented in this book are staggering. What if you told your students that the average person throws away in food the equivalent of 120 pizzas a year? Or that a family of four wastes about $1,500 worth of food a year? More than one quarter of all fresh tomatoes in the U.S. are tossed before they are sold. But a great thing about This Book Stinks! is that it’s not all about amounts of garbage. There is a lot of information about how we can make things better in regards to dealing with waste and how people around the world are doing this right now. For example, Adidas is now developing a sneaker that is made of fishing nets and recycled ocean waste. The last chapter, Take Out the Trash, is devoted to what students can do.

As a teacher, my favorite part of this book are the different formats that are used to convey information. It’s like a buffet of informational text. There are terrific infographics like the spread on pages 60-61 that illustrates how much food is wasted each year. Another presents info on garbage in space. Did you know that about 14 million pounds of space junk is floating up above? Other formats include question and answer, narratives, and flow charts. This is a great book to showcase how many different ways a young writer can reveal facts about a subject.

Students (or adults) may not like taking out the garbage, but This Book Stinks! will help them see it in a whole different way.

Check out more garbage from Jeff Barger at NC Teacher Stuff.

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Prince: The Man, The Symbol, The Music

Prince: The Man, The Symbol, The Music
by Eric Braun (Author)

Booktalk: Prince Rogers Nelson wrote his first song at age seven, and soon taught himself to play the piano, drums, and guitar. In the early 1980s, Prince wondered how to make his music–a mix of pop, funk, soul, and R&B–more appealing to an audience that loved more mainstream rock shows. He ended up making Purple Rain, the hit movie and soundtrack that turned him into a megastar.

Snippet: From an early age, Prince was tuned into music. His mother said that when he was three years old, he would slip away from her in department stores to find the musical instruments. He would play the piano, the organ, or any instrument he could find in the store. “I’d have to hunt for him,” his mother said, “and that’s where he would be–in the music department.”

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2017 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.

There’s a Bug on My Book!

There’s a Bug on My Book!
by John Himmelman (Author / Illustrator)

Booktalk: Beetles fly, frogs hop, and slugs slide over the pages of this book, made to be read by a child while lying on the grass. Children interact with the book, with a tip, tap, and turn of the book, moving the critters along. The critters even interact with each other in surprising ways.

Snippet:

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2017 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.

Up! Up! Up! Skyscraper

Up! Up! Up! Skyscraper
by Anastasia Suen (Author) and Ryan O’Rourke (Illustrator)

Booktalk: Snappy rhymes invite young readers to watch workers dig, pour, pound, and bolt a skyscraper into existence. Simple yet satisfying sidebars provide further information about each step in the construction process. Perfect for preschoolers and all those who dig diggers.

Snippet:

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2017 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.