In My Backyard

( 1 )

Overview

Baby dogs are puppies and they belong to a litter, but what is a baby skunk called and what is the name of its family group? This clever, rhythmic story tells us just that! Counting from one to 10, familiar backyard animals are introduced by baby and family group name. Each stanza also tells a bit more about each animal by providing clues as to what they eat, how they sound or where they live. The "For Creative Minds" section includes more animal fun facts, information on keeping a nature journal and how to watch...

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Overview

Baby dogs are puppies and they belong to a litter, but what is a baby skunk called and what is the name of its family group? This clever, rhythmic story tells us just that! Counting from one to 10, familiar backyard animals are introduced by baby and family group name. Each stanza also tells a bit more about each animal by providing clues as to what they eat, how they sound or where they live. The "For Creative Minds" section includes more animal fun facts, information on keeping a nature journal and how to watch for wildlife in your own backyard.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 3 Young readers who are interested in learning about backyard creatures will welcome this rhyming counting book. From "one doe's fawn" to "a swarm of ten nymphs" (grasshoppers), Giogas introduces children to the group and baby names of 10 critters commonly found in woodland areas (the animals are identified at book's end). For example, a page showing skunks reads, "In my backyard I can see/a surfeit of seven kits/squinting at me./They hunt for grubs and ants and snails,/and sometimes eat the eggs of quails." Appended are additional facts about the highlighted species and tips on ways to observe, protect, and care for wildlife. The colorful illustrations are a good match for the text and at times provide visual clues. The book makes a pleasant read-aloud for younger listeners, while older children can enjoy it independently, though they might need help with a few of the more scientific terms. While not an essential purchase, it will be a useful addition for libraries in which nature books are popular.-Maura Bresnahan, High Plain Elementary School, Andover, MA

Kirkus Reviews
Giogas's debut is a nature counting book that teaches young childen the names of animals' young, as well as what to call a group of that animal. "In my backyard I can see / groups of baby animals / all around me. / They creep, they crawl, they run, and hide. / They munch, they crunch, they sleep outside." From a prickle of two pups (porcupines) to a surfeit of seven kits (skunks), she highlights both the usual and the unusual. Readers will learn an interesting fact about each: eating habits, habitat and adaptations. Zecca's softly colored illustrations portray realistic-looking animals. Each page features one larger picture in which to find and count the babies, and smaller pictures that are close-ups, or that show the animal in their home or backyard setting. Backmatter includes animal cards to photocopy or download, a summary page showing where each of the baby animals is hiding, signs that animals are around, information on caring for wildlife and steps to take if you find an injured animal. While the rhythms of the verses are not always lyrical, young naturalists will nonetheless enjoy this one, especially since Pam Mu-oz Ryan's A Pinky is a Baby Mouse (1997) is out of print. (Picture book. 3-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781607188711
  • Publisher: Arbordale Publishing
  • Publication date: 3/28/2013
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,368,279
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.30 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 0.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Valarie Giogas, pronounced JOE-gus (In My Backyard) has been writing since she was a young child. As a teacher, her favorite part of teaching was the books. She’s been writing for children ever since she discovered that she could combine her love for children’s literature with her passion for writing. The idea for In My Backyard began when her son was in preschool. They always drove by a gaggle of geese and he would giggle when she told him the group name. When the geese had goslings, the idea for this book was cemented. A member of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, Valarie has also written articles for Hopscotch Magazine. Valarie and her family live in a suburb of Boston
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2007

    A reviewer

    Children will have fun reading this book, probably not even realizing that at the same time they are learning about the animals they can see close by their homes. They will also have fun counting the baby animals. In My Backyard presents ten different animals in their backyard habitat. Author Valerie Giogas uses rhyming and some alliteration in her pleasurable and informative text. Katherine Zecca¿s illustrations entrance the eye not only with lifelike renderings of the animals up close, but also with their habitats. For instance the squirrels are snuggled in their tree trunk nest or the moles move about in their burrows. The activities in the book will keep a child or classroom busy and happy while learning. One engrossing thing a child or preschool class can do is look for the ¿signs¿ that animals leave to show they are around. What a treasure hunt that will be! Recommended for children two years through seven years.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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