Saturday, February 28, 2015

Kid Konnection: Dawn Publications Spring 2015

Every Saturday, I host a feature called Kid Konnection -- a regular weekend feature about anything related to children's books. This week, I'm going to share with you a few new educational picture books from Dawn Publications, a great publisher that offers fun science picture books.

Summary: Take a ride with Pitter on a water cycle! Tumble from the sky, careen off a leaf, plunge into a stream as you travel through a watershed. Then take a ride with Patter—even through an underground cave. Oh, the places you’ll go and the creatures you’ll see. A water drop is a wonderfully adventurous thing to be! Following the main story is a large, attractive schematic showing both the parts of the water cycle and how each drop took different paths through the watershed. An “Explore More” section for teachers and parents offers a very clear presentation of states of matter (“Same but Different”), the water cycle (“Around and Around”), the watershed (“Going Down!”), and water’s role in habitats and humans (“Around and Through”). For each of these concepts, which may be challenging for children to visualize, there is one or more suggested activity to help make the concepts less abstract. -- Dawn Publications

I am a huge fan of Dawn Publications picture books. They truly are a great mix of fun and science and their new releases don't disappoint. PITTER AND PATTER by Martha Sullivan and illustrated by Cathy Morrison is just a gorgeous book that teaches kids about the water cycle. Pitter falls from the sky and lands in a stream, while Patter goes through a watershed. This adorable picture book teaches kids the different paths two water drops can take after they fall from the sky.

PITTER AND PATTER has absolutely wonderful illustrations that are the perfect complement to the story. I enjoyed seeing all of the animals in their natural habitats while also learning about the water cycle. The illustrations are very detailed so I imagine kids even younger than the target audience will be interested in reading these books -- there's just so much to explore!

In addition the actual story, there is a fantastic section at the back of the book that allows readers (and teachers) to explore more about the water cycle. It provides additional details about the different states of matter, the water cycle and the watershed. In addition, there is are activities on Dawn Publication's website related to PITTER PATTER here and here -- one even allows kids to be a nature detective.

Highly recommended as a fun way to learn more about the water cycle!

Summary: Discover twenty cool animals, ten great mountain ranges, and seven continents all in one story! And do it in the age-old style of children the world over—by clapping, counting, singing, and acting like . . . well, animals! What fun! Following the main story, this book is chock full of resources for parents and teachers, including facts about each of the animals featured (including the hidden animals) and about mountains. A simple world map makes it easy for children to locate the continents and the mountain ranges where the animals live. A “Tips from the Author” page has suggested activities and a “Tips from the Illustrator” page offers an interesting perspective from the artist, who created the illustrations using cut paper.. -- Dawn Publications

OVER ON A MOUNTAIN: SOMEWHERE IN THE WORLD by  Marianne Berkes and illustrated by Jill Dubin is great book that teaches kids about animals, mountain habitats and continents! And if that's not enough, it also teaches kids about numbers and lets them find "surprises" on every page.

Dawn Publications has done it again. I know I sound like a broken record, but I find these books to be fun and they teach me things. Just imagine how much fun kids would find them? In OVER ON A MOUNTAIN, the author introduces some fun (and unique) animals that live in the mountains while also showing where the mountains are on the seven continents. This cute story also allows kids to count out the animals on each page -- my kids loved doing this when they were little. In addition, there is fun rhyming text that makes the book perfect for kids of all ages.

I couldn't wait to turn to the back of the book to see what supplemental materials were there. As cute as the books are, I really do love this section of the books! In OVER ON A MOUNTAIN, there mountain facts and detailed descriptions of all the "hidden" animals. There are also some helpful tips from the author and illustrator for the older audience as well as a song you can sing with your kids.

In addition to all of the educational activities for OVER ON A MOUNTAIN included in the back of the book, there are even more on the website! Teachers will find they can use the following materials to supplement the book including animal actions, animals are hiding, where in the world?, world mountain map, OVER ON A MOUNTAIN bookmarks.

A terrific book for animal lovers and a must-have for every school library!

Summary: Every kind of bird has their very own kind of sound! Cheerful sounds,mournful sounds, sweet sounds, weird sounds. You can tell who they are without even opening your eyes. And what fun to sing along! John Himmelman knows those sounds well and loves to share his enthusiasm for birds. He explains how to call birds by “pishing,” gives tips on how to attract birds by feeding them, how to make your list of birds, and more. John is the creator of “The Big Sit!”—an event in which participants all over the planet choose one spot, a 17-foot circle, to count all the birds they see and hear in 24 hours. -- Dawn Publications

NOISY BIRD SING-ALONG by John Himmelman is an adorable book for the future bird watcher in your life. This book not only has gorgeous illustrations of a variety of birds, but it also teaches kids about the different sounds birds make. It even encourages kids to sing-along with the bird sounds!

NOISY BIRD SING-ALONG is definitely aimed at a younger audience; however, the back of the book once again takes it up a notch. There are Fun Facts for all of the birds included in the story as well as some ideas for bird watching. There is even a list of some on-line resources for bird lovers.

This book would be the perfect way for teachers to introduce birds and their sounds to kids. There are even some on-line  educational activities which complement NOISY BIRD SING-ALONG including conducting your own Dawn Chorus and surveying your school grounds for bird habitats. You can also listen to the various birds sounds from the book.

Another great addition to the Dawn Publications catalog of science books! Highly recommended!

Thanks to the publisher for providing review copies of these books.

If you'd like to participate in Kid Konnection and share a post about anything related to children's books (picture, middle grade, or young adult) from the past week, please leave a comment as well as a link below with your name/blog name and the title of the book! Feel free to grab the little button too!


Stacie said...

I'm a sucker for animal books. These look awesome! Thanks for sharing!

Beth F said...

One of my nephews would have devoured these books when he was a kid. He loved animals and nature books.

bermudaonion said...

What gorgeous books - I'm sure Vance would have loved all of them!

Cathy Morrison said...

I'm the illustrator of Pitter and Patter and appreciate you taking a look at our book and giving such a nice review. I learned a lot while illustrating Martha's story. I'm illustrating a second story by her now and have to say she's an awesome writer!