"Home, home on the range, where the deer and the antelope play. Where seldom is heard, not a discouraging word, and the skies are not cloudy all day." Now switch gears to new verses that describe what children discover while hiking in the mountains or at the beach. Learning about three basic elements found in our world is indeed more fun with music as earth, water, and air are presented (Fire is not explored in this book.) The three properties of matter are liquid, solid, and gas which are properties of Earth, too. Specifically, young students will find that water and soil have critical properties which are vital to all living things. "Home, home on the Earth, with its gases to breathe all around, where the sun forms a breeze over deep-water seas, and the soil and the rocks make the ground." For example, talking about the water cycle with very young scientists can be difficult because of the vocabulary. However, "we need water to drink; it's amazing to think that it falls from the clouds in the sky" encourages children to follow rain drops into rivers that flow to oceans which are heated by the sun during evaporation to make clouds. This brief scenario is given in a fact box which is one of the important features of books in the "Science Song" series. Beginning readers will greatly benefit from them. Descriptive illustrations assist early readers during the singing or a reading aloud of the story. For adults reluctant to incorporate music into their programs or unsure of their musical skills, download an audio file at http://www.capstonekids.com/sciencesongs.html. Quite helpful are the entire lyrics in the back of the book with the basic notes of the tune. "Did You Know?" a"Glossary," "To Learn More," an "Index." and "On the Web" foster ways to expand various investigations. Perhaps the musical element does not appeal to some families and educators. Even so, this musical series provides an engaging introduction to fundamental science concepts with small children playing in various settings. Rhyming text accompanies bright, colorful illustrations with several valuable resources for the targeted age group, even as young as four and five year olds. Reviewer: Susan Treadway, M.Ed
Product dimensions: 11.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.30 (d)
Meet the Author
Laura Purdie Salas is the author of more than 100 books for kids and teens. Her work has received the Minnesota Book Award and other honors, including Bank Street Best Books of the Year, and NCTE Notables. She and her husband live in Minnesota and have two monsters of their own, Maddie and Annabelle. When Laura's not reading or writing, she likes to dance, play games, and work with the Minnesota Brass drum corps (which involves a lot of Counting, following Patterns, and creating Shapes on the field). She tries to eat More vegetables and Less brownies, but that is hard! Learn more about Laura at laursalas.com.