Let's get started with our books. We'll start with the book that will be given away.
Count Down to Fall
by Fran Hawk; Illustrated by Sherry Neidigh
take an on-line quiz here
With rhyme and meter the author takes the young reader from ten to one through a count down learning leaf identification. There are four pages of extra activities to go along with this book. Be sure to read to the end of this post for a chance to win a copy of this book.
The summer days get a little colder; the leaves turn from green to orange and red. Fall must be on the way, and while you unpack sweaters and scarves, the animals frolic outside in the crisp autumn air beneath a wide blue sky. In Fran Hawk's Count Down to Fall, watch the falling leaves tumble all around. The vibrant and detailed illustrations of Sherry Neidigh capture the majesty of the maple, the oak, the linden, and more. Critters play in the time of changing seasons, and remind us that the changes of the earth affect us all-animals and humans alike!
Here's an interview with author Fran Hawk
What was your incentive to write this particular book?
One autumn day, as thousands of leaves were falling around me, I realized how few I could identify. I decided to write the book so that children would start early to learn the names of leaves—and have fun in the process.When did you become interested in writing?
In first grade, as soon as I could write, I wrote a story about a mouse named “Wittle James Woo.” I’ve been writing ever since.What is the most frequently asked question you encounter as an author, and what is your answer?
Most frequently, children ask me if I like to write. The answer is that I love to write! Even on family vacations, I’m writing just to be writing. I have notebooks full of writing that nobody will ever read, including me!When are you most creative?
(Or what sparks your creativity?)
I’m most creative when I take time out from my usual places and activities and spend time alone. I wrote Count Down to Fall when I was vacationing by myself and had time to take long walks every dayDo you have any advice for parents (or other group) about…?
I’ve taken many courses on writing and am certified as a writing teacher. I know a lot more about writing than I know about leaves.What is most rewarding and/or challenging about writing children’s books?
Everything about writing children’s books is rewarding. I enjoy everything about hanging out in children’s libraries and doing research. I enjoy putting everything together into the form of the book. I enjoy presenting the finished product to children and getting their feedback.Your choice. Please think of an interesting question to ask yourself!
Of all the things you could be doing, why do you write children’s books?
I write children’s books because I think children are the most important people in the world. I want them to have countless books that encourage them to be excited about reading and excited and fascinated by the world.
by Terry Pierce
Illustrated by Lisa Downey
watch video trailer for this book here
Read author interview here
take on-line book quiz hereWith rhyme and repetition young readers learn how plants and animals help each other out. 4 pages of fun activities are at the end of this adorable book and one activity includes a Blackberry smoothie recipe to make with your child. Some of the extra activities include learning how animals help plants and if all plants are safe to eat.
Mmm-mm! Forest animals squeak, tweet, slurp, yip and chomp over the sweet, plump fruit of a wild blackberry bush. But what happens when a bear arrives to take part in the feast? Young children will enjoy following the story by making the animal sounds, and the chaos that strikes upon the bear's arrival will surely bring on the laughter. The cumulative, rhyming text makes for a great read-aloud.
by Bettina Restrepa
Illustrated by Sherry Rogers
Read author interview here
take an on-line quiz here
Moose and Magpie become friends as Magpie tells riddles through out the book. See if your youngster can figure out the riddles before Moose does. 4 pages of extra activities are at the end of this book. Your little scholar will learn facts about moose and magpies as there is one on each page of the book.
It isn't easy being a moose. You're a full-grown adult at the age of one, and it itches like crazy when your antlers come in! In Bettina Restrepo's Moose and Magpie, young Moose is lucky to find a friend and guide in the wisecracking Magpie. "What do the liberty bell and moose have in common?" the Magpie asks as the seasons begin to change. Then, when fall comes: "Why did the moose cross the road?" Vivid illustrations by Sherry Rogers bring these characters to life. Laugh along with Moose and Magpie, and maybe-just maybe-Moose will make a joke of his own!
Little Red Bat
by Carole Gerber
Illustrated by Christina Wald
watch a video trailer for this book here
read an author interview hereThe animals are making preparations for winter that is soon to come. Each animal that Little Red Bat encounters warns him of a predator that is lurking in the forest to beware of. Bat is unable to decide if he should hibernate or fly south he reminds each friend of his disguise that he has against any harm that should come to him. Winter survival is the theme of this fall book.
Here are some of the activities found in the 4 pages of “For Creative Minds” educational section at the end of this book:
- Match the Bat Adaptations
- How Animals Deal with Seasonal Changes
- Red Bats and Seasonal Changes
- Bat Life Cycle Sequencing Activity
and “Teaching Activities” on Sylvan Dell Publishing’s website, to help parents and educators extend the learning possibilities!
Red bats can hibernate or migrate to warmer regions during the winter. Should this solitary little bat stay or should she go? That's the question the little red bat ponders as the leaves fall and the nights get colder! Some animals, such as the squirrel, tell her to stay. But what about the dangerous creatures that hunt red bats in winter? The sparrow and others urge her to go. But where? Carole Gerber takes young readers on an educational journey through one bat's seasonal dilemma in Little Red Bat. Imaginative illustrations by Christina Wald give little red bat charm and personality, and children will be waiting and wondering what will happen next. Will the little red bat stay put or migrate south for safety and warmth?
by Loran Wlodarski
Illustrated by Lew Clayton
Read an author interview here
Take an on-line quiz hereWith this book your child will learn about endangered and threatened animals with the main character being the Florida panther. They will learn how we humans have an effect the wildlife's habitat.
sample of activities you'll find on-line in the Teacher activities section at Sylvan Dell
(this is only a small part of the 54 page pdf book of activities)
Questions to ask children before reading the book
•What do you think the book is about by looking at the cover (or one or two of the inside illustrations)? Sometimes it is easy to tell from the cover, other times it is not.
•What type of animal is on the cover?
•Where do you think this animal lives? Why?
•How do you think this book might be related to your math, science, or social studies class?
•What was happening Felina’s forest?
•Why did that upset Felina?
•What were the red-cockaded woodpeckers worried about?
•Why was Felina upset about the road with the fast-moving traffic?
•How did the road affect the gopher tortoise?
•Why did Felina not like the ATVs?
•How did the ATVs affect the wood stork?
•How did Felina cut her paw?
•What was in the water with the crocodile and why did that bother it?
•What might happen when people feed wild animals?
•What might happen to manatees with fast-moving boats?
•Why do you think the man shot Felina and what did he shoot her with?
•Where was Felina when she woke up?
•How did those people help her?
•After Felina was all better, why didn’t the people put her in a zoo?
•What did they do with her?
•Do you think Felina will be happy in her new home? Why or why not?
There are also “Related Websites,” “Interactive Math, Reading, and ComprehensionQuizzes,” and “Teaching Activities” on Sylvan Dell Publishing’s website, to help parents and educators extend the learning possibilities!
Felina the Florida panther loved growing up in her forest home, until the forest starts to shrink! Trees begin to disappear, and Felina doesn't understand the new busy highway in the neighborhood. Other animals are in danger, too. Will Felina find a way to survive as humans threaten to ruin her home? Environmental science writer Loran Wlodarski gives children a look into deforestation and endangered animals in Felina's New Home: A Florida Panther Story, complemented by the detailed, emotive illustrations of Lew Clayton. Learn whether the animals in Felina's forest adapt to the new human presence and what children can do to keep wild animals safe, happy, and healthy.
And now for how you could win the featured book
Count Down to Fall by Fran Hawk
I'd like to thank Ashlee from Sylvan Dell Publishing for the offer to supply one of my blog reader/commenters with a copy of Count Down to Fall by Fran Hawk
A digital copy of these books were provided in exchange for my honest review by...