When the new edition of my book, Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out! was created, there was a lionfish on the top left corner of the cover. My reaction: WHAAAA? I’ve been snorkeling the reefs in the Caribbean for about 20 years and I knew that was not a native fish. After a little research, though, I found out more about the lionfish invasion of the reefs. And I found out this fish is indeed widespread now. I thought having this fish on the cover would be a great teaching point. Kudos to the illustrator, Annie Patterson, for putting it there in the first place.
It’s a great jumping off point for students researching this issue. I just watched the tv entrepreneur show, Shark Tank, where Dave Johnson and Gary Groomes of Traditional Fisheries talked about the lionfish invasion of Atlantic reefs. Teachers, I think you might be able to develop some terrific research/conservation projects related to this issue. Perfect for common core and research. There are many logistical aspects to accomplishing what these folks are trying to do. Eat the fish that is eating the reefs! They made a great case on the show for this solution.
Here are photos of seeds to help you identify the seeds in my book Let’s Go Nuts: Seeds We Eat, (August 27, 2013, Beach Lane Books).
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Have you accidentally (or on purpose) memorized parts of Let’s Go Nuts! Seeds We Eat? (Beach Lane, August, 2013)
Below are two photos with seeds arranged in the format of parts of the seed chant.
Try out your memory. “Read” these photos by identifying the seeds and saying the seed chant out loud to help you figure out the seeds that you find hard to recognize! You can click on the photo for a much larger version to examine.
For my book, Let’s Go Nuts: Seeds We Eat, release date August 27, 2013, Beach Lane Books
Books for Younger Readers
Aston, Dianna Hutts., and Sylvia Long. A Seed Is Sleepy. San Francisco: Chronicle, 2007. Print.
DePaola, Tomie. The Popcorn Book. New York: Holiday House, 1978. Print.
Dodge, Abigail Johnson. Around the World Cookbook. New York: Dk, 2008. Print.
Heller, Ruth. The Reason for a Flower. New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1983.
Jordan, Helene J., and Loretta Krupinski. How a Seed Grows. New York: HarperCollins, 1992. Print.
Krauss, Ruth, and Crockett Johnson. The Carrot Seed;. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1945. Print.
Macken, JoAnn Early, and Pamela Paparone. Flip, Float, Fly: Seeds on the Move. New York: Holiday House, 2008.
Schaefer, Lola M., and Lindsay Barrett George. Pick, Pull, Snap!: Where Once a Flower Bloomed. New York: Greenwillow, 2003. Print.
Books Used For Reference (Highly Recommended for Older Readers)
Ashworth, Suzanne, Kent Whealy, and Arllys Adelmann. Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green, 2002.
Capon, Brian. Botany for Gardeners: An Introduction and Guide. Portland, Or.: Timber Press, 1990. E-book.
Dragonwagon, Crescent. BEAN BY BEAN: More Than 175 Recipes for Fresh Beans, Dried Beans, Cool Beans, Hot Beans, Savory Beans, Even Sweet Beans!: Workman Pub, 2012. Print.
McGee, Harold. On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen. New York: Scribner, 2004. Print.
It’s been such a busy year that I’m only now getting around to reporting on some of the terrific places I’ve visited. In February I was greeted by giant sea turtles at Essex Elementary in VT, where I met a kindred spirit, librarian Carol Scrimgeour.
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If Common Core is about encouraging inquiry, the people we should be consulting are trained librarians: the masters of guided, deep inquiry. Susan Raben at Lyon is a master librarian and clear communicator: she should be teaching thousands of educators nationwide about inquiry. Rachel Davidson, at Henking, is a new tech guru who taught me tons about QR codes and how to get kids creating content and truly interacting with the web, not just imbibing it mindlessly. Hey, administrators nationwide…need help with common core? Go look for the experienced, trained librarians you’ve been undervaluing and laying off. (Thankfully, not these two, whose administrators know they rock.) Librarians are the ones who know how to get kids thinking more deeply about text and content! And these were just two librarians/inquiry masters i met last week while doing school visits in Glenview, IL. This week I’m in schools again; who knows who I might meet.
When I saw Steve Jenkins’ art for our new book, Eat Like a Bear (Sept 10, 2013, Holt), I was amazed. The bears’ bodies were so furry-looking. I emailed Steve about it. He told me their bodies were made of amate, Mexican bark paper. Bark paper? You know me and my love o’ plants. I had to find out more. Turns out that this paper is made from fig and mulberry trees by craftspeople in a few small villages in the mountains of Mexico. It has a really deep history. The Mayan and Aztec people held it sacred. The craft almost died out but survived in one Otomi village in Mexico. Oh, there’s so much more to the story, I almost wish I could write a book about it. Hmm…! Take a look at this article on the web and you’ll see why I fell under the spell of this complex bark paper story: Amate Art of Mexico