... or how a forest comes to be.

Summary:

From an acorn, a tree grows, and in that tree, a bird builds its nest. The bird drops seeds that grow flowers and fruit and feed other animals of the forest, Then, when the hawk loosens an acorn that falls to the ground, the cycle begins again.


Parent Perspective:
The illustrations sold me on this book. The colors and style are just lovely. They add richness to the simple text. I was so excited with the first cut-out page and was ready to see many more. But there is only one, at the end. I picked up this book thinking it would be for young children (toddlers, preschool), but it really isn't. The simple text is just right for that audience, and the illustrations give young listeners plenty to explore. I'm just not sure how many parents of 2-year-olds are ready to explain that snakes eat chipmunks or the real reason the hawk has the snake in its talons.

In the end, my feelings are mixed. This would be a very nice choice in a classroom for Earth Day or an ecosystems unit. The detailed explanation of White Oaks and forests, as well as the suggested activities, are most definitely written for an older audience. But as lovely as it is, I wouldn't buy it for my home library.


Reader Enjoyment Factors:

From an acorn, a tree grows, and in that tree, a bird builds its nest. The bird drops seeds that grow flowers and fruit and feed other animals of the forest, Then, when the hawk loosens an acorn that falls to the ground, the cycle begins again.

Content Awareness Factors:

None. This is not a picture book story in the sense that there is a single character whose events create the story. The book has two cut-outs in the pages, one at the beginning, one at the end. Young listeners who like interactive books may be disappointed. 


Type of Book:
This is a story about the animal/plant ecosystem of a wooded forest.
Educational Themes:

The text uses event sequencing to show how animals and plants are related. It would be very easy to take the book and then create cycle charts that could then be applied to other ecosystems (like oceans). The book explains more about what an ecosystem is and the components of this particular ecosystem in the Cumberland Plateau forests of the Appalachian Mountains. 

There is also a 4-point tip sheet on steps readers can take to be more ecologically conscious. Invite your reader to recommend others. 

Reading Level:
1.9
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
7 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
5 and Up
Purchase Recommendation:
Borrow. It is interesting to read and start discussions about ecology, but it isn't a repeat read.

Title Because of an Acorn
Author Lola M. Schaefer, Adam Schaefer
Publisher Chronicle Books © 2016
Illustrators Frann Preston-Gannon
ISBN 9781452112428
Material Hard Cover
Cost $16.99
Genres Nature, Science, Animal (Nonfiction)
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