Category: Trees (Page 1 of 17)

STEM Friday #Kidlit Stretch to the Sun

Let’s celebrate nature with the picture book Stretch to the Sun: From a Tiny Sprout to the Tallest Tree on Earth by Carrie A. Pearson and illustrated by  Susan Swan.

How do you start a story about the tallest tree in the world? If you’re Carrie Pearson, you start it with a bang!

Creak! Crack! Kaboom!
A giant tree falls, broken,
and the forest floor trembles.

And with that dramatic event comes the opening needed for another tree to be born, one that will live over 1200 years and grow to about 380 feet tall. That’s about as tall as a 35 story building. Amazing!

Susan Swan’s illustrations are equally amazing. She used Adobe Photoshop to create collages of found objects and hand painted papers that are enthralling. The trees are the central characters, of course, but she also features many animals of the Redwood National Park, giving young readers hidden treasures to search for on every page.

Other highlights include a surprise single gate-fold spread that helps emphasize the height of this magnificent tree.

The back matter shines as well. Besides an Author’s Note that explains how the book came about, there are many remarkable facts about coast redwoods, a bibliography, as well as information about where you can learn more and what you can do to help preserve redwoods.

Stretch to the Sun is a one-of-a-kind book about a one-of-a-kind tree. It will thrill young nature lovers. Get lost in a copy today!

Activity Suggestions:

1. Visit Carrie Pearson’s website for resources including an activity and discussion guide, NGSS standards, and a fun trailer for the book.

2.  Learn how to measure the height of a tree in the second activity from this previous post (scroll down.)

3. Visit our tree category here at the blog for many more posts.

4. Want to read more? Try our growing list of children’s books about trees at Science Books for Kids.

 

 

 

 

Reading age ‏ : ‎ 5 – 8 years
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Charlesbridge; Illustrated edition (October 9, 2018)
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1580897711
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1580897716

 

Disclosure: This book was provided by the publisher. 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.

#Kidlit Be A Tree!

There have been a forest of new picture books coming out this spring, but a few stand taller than the rest. One of these is Be a Tree! by Maria Gianferrari and illustrated by Felicita Sala.

The book is hard to categorize.

First the author grabs the young readers with a gentle second person narrative, making them feel like they are a tree.

Stand tall.
Stretch your branches to the sun.
Let your roots coil in the soil to ground you.

Half way through, the point of view shifts to first person plural, the voice of the trees.

Our roots twine with fungi,
joining all trees of the forest together.
We talk…

In the last spread, it all comes together, urging us to care for one another.

Felicita Sala’s illustrations are fascinating. Some of the trees are simple and sturdy. Others are complex, swirling fractals.

The back matter includes an “Author’s Note”, “Five Ways You Can Help Save Trees”, suggestions for ways you can help your own community, two page spread showing the “Anatomy of a Tree”, and lists of books and websites for finding out more.

Overall, this is a one-of-a-kind book. It is likely to inspire thoughtful conversations as well as wonder about trees. In fact, it just might help young readers grow. Plant a seed today with Be a Tree!

Related:

Reading age : 4 – 8 years
Publisher : Harry N. Abrams (March 30, 2021)
ISBN-10 : 1419744224
ISBN-13 : 978-1419744228

Disclosure:  The book was supplied by my 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.

Walk in the Woods for Arbor Day

Let’s take a photographic hike through the woods to celebrate Arbor day.

What kind of trees might we see? (For more information, the links go to previous posts at Growing with Science).

We might see pine trees. Pine trees are conifers. They have needle-like leaves and cones.

Spruce trees also have needle-like leaves and cones.

Hemlocks have tiny cones.

Is this a conifer?

Turns out that although it has broad leaves, this gingko is a gymnosperm so it is a member of the conifer group!

The other major group is the broadleaf trees or angiosperms.

They have flat leaves like this silver maple. Angiosprems have flowers.

The seeds come in different shapes. These are red maple keys.

Acorns are the seeds of oak trees.

Hickory nuts are seeds from a shagbark hickory.

Here in Arizona we have some lovely trees with yellow flowers and green bark called palo verdes.

Palo verde seeds form in pods.

We could go on and on, but our feet are getting tired. If you want to learn more about trees:

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