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Books and Brunch 2010<br />Outstanding Children’s Nonfiction Books 2009-2010<br />Amanda Fensch, Children’s Assistant<br /...
Biographies<br />
Anne Frank:  Her Life In Words and PicturesBy Menno Metselaar<br /><ul><li>Unique biography on well-known figure
  Features many unpublished photographs; photographs are accompanied by diary entries
  Excellent biography for older elementary school students (grades 5 and up) packed with details about Anne’s life before,...
  Also recommend to students who enjoy diary type literature</li></li></ul><li>Bad News for Outlaws:  The Remarkable Life ...
  Has many elements to capture the attention of students grades 3-6 who may not “cotton to” nonfiction:  colorful vernacul...
  Nelson heavily researched the life of Reeves; while Bad News looks and reads like fiction, it is thoroughly cited and ca...
  Publisher’s website offers additional classroom resources, including a discussion guide</li></li></ul><li>Black Elk’s Vi...
  Historically accurate with a unique perspective on an important figure in Native American history
  Author provides extensive bibliography, source notes, and personal note
  Perfect for students seeking information on a historical figure for a research project or give to the student interested...
Macy’s book thoroughly portrays Bly’s “stunt journalism” and her perseverance in a male-dominated field
Provides plenty of photos and other visual aids to accompany text on the 4th-6th grade reading level
Macy provides a fantastic index with every supporting “character” mentioned in the book</li></li></ul><li>Lincoln Tells A ...
Innerst’s illustrations add to the unique humor and zest of this book
Krull and Brewer gathered the quotes used from collections of Lincoln’s jokes and clever sayings, which were mostly compil...
Yolen focuses as much on Barrie’s childhood (the good and bad) as she does his adult life, which is important because it s...
Adams’ illustrations portray Barrie’s unstoppable spirit and are paired with a quote carefully chosen from one of Barrie’s...
End notes include a list of Barrie’s writings and the actresses who have played Peter Pan</li></li></ul><li>The Boy Who In...
Krull focuses on Farnsworth’s dream to become an inventor, doesn’t mention his struggles and depression later on in life e...
Couch’s beautiful illustrations accompany this well-written biography meant to inspire and inform</li></li></ul><li>Scienc...
A World of Colors:  Seeing Colors in A New WayBy Marie Houblon<br /><ul><li>An inviting book that asks children grades K-3...
Takes color beyond the “normal” and includes black, brown, gray and white and explains each of them
The photos in the book for each color are not discussed in detail (each photo may have an exotic location, person, or thin...
A variety of shades of colors are also displayed, which is typically not seen in color books</li></li></ul><li>Bones:  Ske...
Aimed at the 3rd-6th grade levels, the text is fluid and fun
Includes many life-size representations of skeletons (including a small python)
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Best of Children's Nonfiction 2009-2010

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Presented by Amanda Fensch, Children's Librarian at M/RCPL; Best of Children's Nonfiction 2009-2010

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Transcript of "Best of Children's Nonfiction 2009-2010"

  1. 1. Books and Brunch 2010<br />Outstanding Children’s Nonfiction Books 2009-2010<br />Amanda Fensch, Children’s Assistant<br />M/RCPL<br />
  2. 2. Biographies<br />
  3. 3. Anne Frank: Her Life In Words and PicturesBy Menno Metselaar<br /><ul><li>Unique biography on well-known figure
  4. 4. Features many unpublished photographs; photographs are accompanied by diary entries
  5. 5. Excellent biography for older elementary school students (grades 5 and up) packed with details about Anne’s life before, during, and after her capture by the Nazis
  6. 6. Also recommend to students who enjoy diary type literature</li></li></ul><li>Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves, U.S. MarshallBy Vaunda Micheaux Nelson; Illustrated by R. Gregory Christie<br /><ul><li> 2010 Coretta Scott King Author Award Winner
  7. 7. Has many elements to capture the attention of students grades 3-6 who may not “cotton to” nonfiction: colorful vernacular of the Wild West, great artwork, an engaging hero, and the story reads like a picture book, not a biography
  8. 8. Nelson heavily researched the life of Reeves; while Bad News looks and reads like fiction, it is thoroughly cited and can be used by students for reports
  9. 9. Publisher’s website offers additional classroom resources, including a discussion guide</li></li></ul><li>Black Elk’s Vision: A Lakota StoryBy S.D. Nelson<br /><ul><li>Excellent biography written in first-person, present tense
  10. 10. Historically accurate with a unique perspective on an important figure in Native American history
  11. 11. Author provides extensive bibliography, source notes, and personal note
  12. 12. Perfect for students seeking information on a historical figure for a research project or give to the student interested in history</li></li></ul><li>Bylines: A Photobiography of Nellie Bly By Sue Macy<br /><ul><li>Fascinating look at a historical figure who isn’t often brought up in classrooms
  13. 13. Macy’s book thoroughly portrays Bly’s “stunt journalism” and her perseverance in a male-dominated field
  14. 14. Provides plenty of photos and other visual aids to accompany text on the 4th-6th grade reading level
  15. 15. Macy provides a fantastic index with every supporting “character” mentioned in the book</li></li></ul><li>Lincoln Tells A Joke: How Laughter Saved The President (And The Country) By Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer; Illustrated by Stacy Innerst<br /><ul><li>Great book to share out loud with a group of younger students (grades 1-4)—the text shows a lighter side of Lincoln that many students would be unaware of
  16. 16. Innerst’s illustrations add to the unique humor and zest of this book
  17. 17. Krull and Brewer gathered the quotes used from collections of Lincoln’s jokes and clever sayings, which were mostly compiled posthumously (many of them eyewitness accounts); a source list is included</li></li></ul><li>Lost Boy: The Story of the Man Who Created Peter Pan By Jane Yolen; Illustrated by Steve Adams<br /><ul><li>Yolen and Adams capture J.M. Barrie’s vast imagination and sense of adventure in this excellent biography aimed at children grades 3-5
  18. 18. Yolen focuses as much on Barrie’s childhood (the good and bad) as she does his adult life, which is important because it shows how what he experienced as a child shaped what he did as an adult
  19. 19. Adams’ illustrations portray Barrie’s unstoppable spirit and are paired with a quote carefully chosen from one of Barrie’s literary works
  20. 20. End notes include a list of Barrie’s writings and the actresses who have played Peter Pan</li></li></ul><li>The Boy Who Invented TV: The Story of Philo FarnsworthBy Kathleen Krull; Illustrated by Greg Couch<br /><ul><li>Capture the attention of 2-5th graders with the story of Philo Farnsworth—kids can’t imagine a world without television. Tell them the story of the boy who invented it.
  21. 21. Krull focuses on Farnsworth’s dream to become an inventor, doesn’t mention his struggles and depression later on in life except in the afterword
  22. 22. Couch’s beautiful illustrations accompany this well-written biography meant to inspire and inform</li></li></ul><li>Sciences<br />
  23. 23. A World of Colors: Seeing Colors in A New WayBy Marie Houblon<br /><ul><li>An inviting book that asks children grades K-3 to find colors in the world around them
  24. 24. Takes color beyond the “normal” and includes black, brown, gray and white and explains each of them
  25. 25. The photos in the book for each color are not discussed in detail (each photo may have an exotic location, person, or thing in it) and allows for open dialogue between you and your students
  26. 26. A variety of shades of colors are also displayed, which is typically not seen in color books</li></li></ul><li>Bones: Skeletons and How They WorkBy Steve Jenkins<br /><ul><li>Jenkins’ (a Caldecott Honor Award Winner) distinctive artwork style makes bones come to life in this entertaining take on skeletal systems
  27. 27. Aimed at the 3rd-6th grade levels, the text is fluid and fun
  28. 28. Includes many life-size representations of skeletons (including a small python)
  29. 29. End notes include interesting tidbits on a variety of bone topics (human and non-human)</li></li></ul><li>How To Clean A Hippopotamus: A Look At Unusual Animal PartnershipsBy Steve Jenkins and Robin Page<br /><ul><li>Formatted in block comic book style, this book introduces symbiosis to kids at grade levels K-3
  30. 30. Husband and wife team Jenkins and Page showcase some of the more unknown pairings, like the goby and blind shrimp, or the coyote and badger
  31. 31. Like with Bones and other Jenkins books, the artwork is stunning and paired with engaging, accessible text that encourages learning and pleasure reading</li></li></ul><li>In The Trees, Honeybees!By Lori Mortensen; Illustrated by Cris Arbo<br /><ul><li>A great read-aloud suited for grades PreK-3
  32. 32. Almost picture book in presentation, Mortensen’s text is simple and inviting (coupled with interesting facts about bees at the bottom of each page) while Arbo’s highly detailed illustrations are truly incredible
  33. 33. End notes offer great information on the lives and importance of bees along with resources</li></li></ul><li>Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World’s Strangest ParrotBy Sy Montgomery; Photographs by Nic Bishop<br /><ul><li>One of the strangest, most amazing birds ever found, the kakapo will certainly be a source of wonder for students once they discover it with the help of Montgomery’s superb book
  34. 34. Written with older students (grades 5 and up) in mind, this book details Montgomery and Bishop’s ten days with New Zealand’s National Kakapo Recovery Team, a group that works to restore the very limited kakapo population (current count is 122 of these beautiful birds)
  35. 35. This is a riveting book--filled with stunning photographs that accompany a story that is an emotional rollercoaster
  36. 36. Montgomery provides facts and history on the kakapo and then launches into the journey she and Bishop had while in New Zealand, observing rescue group members trying to save kakapo eggs and babies, being chased by a “famous” kakapo named Sirocco, and exploring Codfish Island (sometimes in gale force wind and rain), where the kakapo live</li></li></ul><li>Nic Bishop MarsupialsBy Nic Bishop<br /><ul><li>Bishop adds to his repertoire of engaging nonfiction titles with Marsupials
  37. 37. Filled with photographs of high quality that Bishop is known for (and that kids grades 2-5 will react to with open mouths and big eyes), Bishop adds facts, details, and fun information about each animal in straightforward language
  38. 38. Bishop also includes info on how he took each photo (most of the animals are nocturnal) and a handy index and glossary</li></li></ul><li>The Buffalo Are BackBy Jean Craighead George; Illustrated by Wendell Minor<br /><ul><li>George blends nonfiction with a touch of fiction to tell the story of the history of buffalo on the American plains to kids grade levels 2-5
  39. 39. George’s eloquent writing and Minor’s evocative watercolor paintings will transport kids to a different time and place, especially if the book is read aloud
  40. 40. George does not gloss over how the buffalo and the plains were almost obliterated by hunters, Westward expansion, and the American government
  41. 41. End notes list a few sources and several places that kids can visit to see buffalo in their natural habitat</li></li></ul><li>The Frog ScientistBy Pamela S. Turner; Photographs by Andy Comins<br /><ul><li>An enthusiastic, inspiring look at a scientist and his work, presented with gorgeous photographs and straightforward storytelling
  42. 42. Tyrone Hayes, whose potential as a student was recognized and turned into a career by a professor who didn’t give up on him, is now “The Frog Scientist”, studying the effects of the chemical atrazine on amphibians
  43. 43. Give this book to a budding scientist or a kid that needs a little inspiration; Tyrone’s passion for his job and his crew (“The Frog Squad”) is evident throughout the book and is uplifting to read about; grades 5 and up</li></li></ul><li>The Salmon Bears: Giants of the Great Bear RainforestBy Ian McAllister and Nicholas Read; Photographs by Ian McAllister<br /><ul><li>A look at a lesser-known habitat presented in conversational text with fantastic photographs
  44. 44. Extensive data is presented on the different bears, their diets, habitat, family life (especially the bond between mother and cub)
  45. 45. Young researchers will find info on the Spirit Bears (white-furred black bears) especially fascinating
  46. 46. A great choice for school reports and browsers; ideal for grades 5 and up</li></li></ul><li>Where Else in the Wild? More Camouflaged Creatures Concealed…and RevealedPoems by David M. Schwartz and Yael Schy; Photographs by Dwight Kuhn<br /><ul><li>Follow-up to Where in the Wild?, this collaboration of poetry, facts, and photography is wholly unique and superbly constructed
  47. 47. Each two-page spread contains a poem about the camouflaged creature in the facing photograph; if you then lift the page with the photograph, you can read facts about the hidden animal/insect
  48. 48. Excellent for individual use or read-alouds with grades 2-5</li></li></ul><li>Poetry<br />
  49. 49. Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the NightBy Joyce Sidman; Illustrated by Rick Allen<br /><ul><li>Sidman (Caldecott Honor winner) combines compelling poetry, Allen’s stunning artwork and science for a knockout combination, grades 3-6
  50. 50. Opposite page illustrations highlight Sidman’s vivid poetry; the poems are a mix of structures and don’t always rhyme, allowing students to be introduced to various poetic forms
  51. 51. Facts about each life form are placed on the page opposite the poem, giving kids a chance to explore further and/or do research
  52. 52. A glossary is provided with all the scientific vocabulary covered in the book</li></li></ul><li>PoetreesBy Douglas Florian<br /><ul><li>Eloquent and enjoyable wordplay from a well-known children’s poet based around the magnificence and importance of trees
  53. 53. Each poem is printed on a two-page spread with artwork of the tree or tree part described
  54. 54. Florian’s poetry is graceful and full of excellent vocabulary-building words, great for reading aloud and group activities in grades 3-6
  55. 55. Includes a “Glossatree” in the back and an Author’s Note with resources</li></li></ul><li>The MonsterologistBy Bobbi Katz; Illustrated by Adam McCauley<br /><ul><li>Designed to look like a scrapbook, this “volume” of monster poems will have kids giggling with delight as they read about trolls, vampires, goblins, and more
  56. 56. Katz’s rhymes are spectacular in form and the poems range from subtlety funny to downright hysterical (try reading the “Suds Surfing Sock Eater” without smiling)
  57. 57. McCauley’s illustrations are also a sight to behold and pull together the entire collection
  58. 58. Perfect for poetry enthusiasts and beginners, monster-story lovers, and those looking for a good laugh in grades 3-6</li></li></ul><li>History of Exploration/Music/Social Sciences<br />
  59. 59. Cars on Mars: Roving the Red PlanetBy Alexandra Siy<br /><ul><li>Follows the journey of Spirit and Opportunity, the two rovers on Mars
  60. 60. Designed to only last 90 days, both rovers have been slowly working, gathering samples and collecting data, for over 5 years
  61. 61. The book is full of black and white photographic images of Mars and artistic renderings of the rovers and what the planet might look like in real life; also includes photos taken of the rovers and all their gear while on Earth with excellent details mapped out for curious students
  62. 62. Siy takes readers on a fantastic journey to a planet that holds a lot of interest for current and future space explorers</li></li></ul><li>Learn to Speak Music: A Guide to Creating, Performing and Promoting Your Own SongsBy John Crossingham; Illustrated by Jeff Kulak<br /><ul><li>For the music lover or the true enthusiast looking for advice on how to write and create music
  63. 63. The author is a music professional who starts the book with simple lessons (beat, rhythm, melody, etc) and gradually steps up the advice as the book goes on
  64. 64. Crossingham has an easy, conversational tone to his writing that never feels forced or demanding, but rather encouraging, which is important for any kid</li></li></ul><li>Sit-In: How Four Friends Stood Up By Sitting DownBy Andrea Pinkney; Illustrated by Brian Pinkney<br /><ul><li>Pinkney uses powerful metaphors and repetitious phrasing to describe the focus of her book : in 1960, four African-American college students sat down at a N.C. Woolworth’s lunch counter that was for “whites only” and were refused service; they went back every day and were treated exactly the same way
  65. 65. Students grades 3-6 will understand what these young men (the Greensboro Four) were trying to accomplish through peaceful protests because of Pinkney’s effective word choices
  66. 66. Brian Pinkney’s illustrations also make a potent statement with mixes of thick and thin lines and patches of color
  67. 67. Civil rights timeline and update on what happened after the book ends are provided </li>
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