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Posted October 16, 2013
Over In A River: Flowing Out To The Seais a recipient of the prestigious Mom's Choice Award. The Mom’s Choice Awards honors excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. An esteemed panel of judges includes education, media and other experts as well as parents, children, librarians, performing artists, producers, medical and business professionals, authors, scientists and others. A sampling of the panel members includes: Dr. Twila C. Liggett, ten-time Emmy-winner, professor and founder of PBS’s Reading Rainbow; Julie Aigner-Clark, Creator of Baby Einstein and The Safe Side Project; Jodee Blanco, New York Times best-selling Author and; LeAnn Thieman, motivational speaker and coauthor of seven Chicken Soup For The Soul books. Parents and educators look for the Mom’s Choice Awards seal in selecting quality materials and products for children and families.
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Posted September 25, 2013
Marianne Berkes has topped herself with her best book yet! Over in a River is a beautiful and brilliant book about the major rivers of the
United States and the animals that make these rivers their habitat. As with the other books in her “Over” series, young readers will
absorb the information without even realizing they are learning. Jill Dubin (Over in Australia, Over in the Arctic, Over in the Forest,) has
created stunning paper collage illustrations. Each illustration includes a map that identifies the location of the river mentioned in the
verse, the animals in their river habitat and a hidden animal that children will delight in spotting. Berkes concludes the book with
extensive research about the rivers and animals, along with additional resources and tips from both the author and the illustrator.
I was provided a paperback copy from the publisher to review, but once I saw how wonderful the book is, I bought a copy in hardback
for my school library. Recommended for ages 3- 8. Judy Houser, Librarian, Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy, Melbourne, FL.
Posted August 17, 2013
, math, reading, and geography all in one fun book
Have you ever seen a real, live manatee? Do you even know what it is? Over in the St. John River of Florida “Where the warm waters run Lived a mother manatee And her little calf one.” Manatees are marine mammals which live in the ocean but paddle into warmer rivers when the ocean temperature drops below 65 degrees. Other kinds of animals live in, on, above, or around the great rivers of North America, like blue herons in the Hudson, salmon in the Columbia, dragonflies in the Rio Grande, and mallards in the St. Lawrence. Author Marianne Berkes discusses ten different types of such animals following the same pattern of the children’s folk song "Over in a Meadow" that she used in her five previous books in this series, Over in Australia, Over in the Forest, Over in the Jungle, Over in the Ocean, and Over in the Arctic, the first four of which have been previously reviewed here. Do you know where otters live, what their babies are called, and what they like to do?
Not only is the book educational but it also holds children’s attention well with its interactive features. In addition to illustrator Jill Dubin’s colorful cut-paper pictures enhanced with colored pencils and pastels which show the animals in their natural habitats near or on the river, each page names the animal with a map of where it lives, identifies the name of the animal’s babies, and tells what the animals do. There is the added benefit of reinforcing counting from one to ten. And each picture contains a hidden animal for the child to find. Furthermore, the back pages contain more information about the rivers and the animals, along with tips from both the author and the illustrator. Under “Fact or Fiction?”, Berkes writes, “The animals in this story behave as they have been portrayed—muskrats squeal, manatees paddle, and dragonflies whirl. That’s a fact! But do they have the number of babies as in this rhyme? No, that is fiction!” Science, math, reading, and geography all in one fun book—what more could one ask for?
Posted February 1, 2014
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