Discover the Amazon: The World's Largest Rainforestby Lauri Berkenkamp, Blair Shedd
From avoiding predators to navigating through the jungle without a compass, this innovative guide provides kids with the vital tools one would need if lost in the Amazon. Offering practical survival techniques based on real stories, children will learn lessons that can be adapted to almost any outdoor situation, such as making fire, deciphering animal tracks, and using the natural world for all to create necessary supplies. Opening with an informative section on the region and its people, this essential resource combines history and science in a fun and engaging way. Facts and sidebars on the local creatures and plants are interspersed along with 15 activities for the home or classroomfrom making a fishing spear to determining how much water is needed to stay healthy.
Most books on the Amazon rely on spectacular photos of animals and plants to make an impact on readers. Berkenkamp's introduction to the river basin incorporates maps, drawings, and photos in various shades of green and brown on recycled paper. Yet, the text is far from dull. The conversational style provides a "you are there" feeling, conveying information and anecdotes while stressing outdoor survival skills. Facts about tropical rainforests, the Amazon and its tributaries, plus various plants and animals are woven throughout the text. Chapters feature tips on exploring safely on land and water, finding food and drinking water, and surviving at night. Descriptions of how to choose insects for a meal or how to distinguish varieties of nocturnal caiman by their eyeshine will intrigue potential explorers because of their exotic topics. However, many of the survival skills, such as crossing rivers or setting up shelter, could prove useful in other locations. Even readers who never travel to Amazonia will appreciate the region's complexity and significance after perusing this book, which ends with suggestions for ways to slow its destruction. Because of the book's broad sweep, those wanting in-depth information on specific topics will need to complete additional research, but this volume should stimulate interest in this diverse and important region.-Kathy Piehl, Minnesota State University, Mankato
"Even readers who never travel to Amazonia will appreciate the region's complexity and significance after perusing this book, which ends with suggestions for ways to slow its destruction . . . This volume should stimulate interest in this diverse and important region." School Library Journal
"Although most of us will never visit the Amazon, its rainforests, or other ecospheres, Discover the Amazon allows us to imagine we will . . . There are lots of try-this suggestions sprinkled throughout the book . . . if you're looking for a book that will stimulate your children's interest in learning about the Amazon, this is a terrific find." Eclectic Homeschool Magazine Online
"A thrilling book from front to back. The information is written in an easy conversational style that makes the book more personal for the reader and is easy to follow . . . strongly recommended for purchase and use by classroom teachers, librarians, and parents." Clear Review, Kenton County Public Library
Meet the Author
Lauri Berkenkamp is the author of "Because I Said So!," "Mom, the Toilet's Clogged!," Kid Disasters and How to Fix Them, Talking to Your Kids About Sex, and Teaching Your Children Good Manners. Writing under the pen name Maxine Anderson, she is also the author of Amazing Leonardo da Vinci Inventions You Can Build Yourself, Explore Spring!, Explore Winter!, and Great Civil War Projects You Can Build Yourself. She lives in Hanover, New Hampshire. Blair Shedd is a freelance writer and illustrator, the founder of oneGemini Studios, and the creator of the comic book Wayward Son. He lives in New England.
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