Handful of Dirt by Raymond Bial, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Handful of Dirt

Handful of Dirt

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by Raymond Bial
     
 

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Soil may not be alive, but amazingly, multitudes of microscopic creatures live there, battling it out in an eat-or-be-eaten world. These tiny creatures, invisible to our eyes, provide food for the insects that in turn feed the reptiles and mammals that live in and above the soil. You'll never look at the ground you walk on in the same way after Raymond Bial, an

Overview

Soil may not be alive, but amazingly, multitudes of microscopic creatures live there, battling it out in an eat-or-be-eaten world. These tiny creatures, invisible to our eyes, provide food for the insects that in turn feed the reptiles and mammals that live in and above the soil. You'll never look at the ground you walk on in the same way after Raymond Bial, an award-winning photo essayist, takes you on this eye-opening, down-and-dirty tour of one of the earth's most precious resources.

Editorial Reviews

Mr. Bial passes on the reverence for the soil and growing things he learned from his grandfather to the next generation of gardeners. The basic theme is the need to care for and enrich the soil. Beautiful photos accompany the text, illustrating soil composition, the plants and animals important for healthy soil, and complete gardens. (My favorites are the mole and the prairie dog pictures.) The electron micrographs of soil minerals and microorganisms are great, and your bug lover will enjoy the worm and insect photos. This is not intended to be a reference book for reports, but rather an inspiration for young gardeners learning to care for and love their land. 2000, Walker and Company, $16.95. Ages 8 to 12. Reviewer: J. Cook SOURCE: Parent Council Volume 8
Children's Literature
This thoughtful and dramatic examination of soil, commonly called "dirt," is accompanied by colorful photographs showing creatures that live in the soil, ingredients that make up soil, and living things that require soil to grow. As Bial says, "Without soil, there would be no life on earth." Discussing the process by which soil is created, he writes, "Like a science fiction thriller, the surface of the soil is the battleground for the most vicious, bloodthirsty creatures on Earth." He emphasizes the "cycle of life, death, and decay" that continuously forms and rejuvenates soil, and concludes with instructions for creating a compost pile. This book is a good choice for elementary school children exploring life cycles, ecology, and the growth of plants, and is especially valuable because it directs attention to fascinating details of something that is all around and readily available for children to experience, but that is frequently taken for granted. A bibliography and index are included. 2000, Walker, Ages 7 to 10, $16.95. Reviewer: Linnea Hendrickson

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780802786982
Publisher:
Walker & Company
Publication date:
01/01/2001
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
529,568
Product dimensions:
10.15(w) x 8.91(h) x 0.35(d)
Lexile:
1190L (what's this?)
Age Range:
7 - 10 Years

Meet the Author

Raymond Bial recently retired from his position as a college library director at the University of Illinois. He continues to create the beautiful photo-essays that have garnered him awards and high praise. His Amish Home was an ALA Notable Book, and, in a starred review, Booklist called his Tenement: Immigrant Life on the Lower East Side "an excellent example of how books can bring the past into the present." Raymond lives in Urbana, Illinois, with his wife and two younger children, Sarah and Luke. His oldest daughter, Anna, is a fashion designer in New York City.

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