Saturn for My Birthdayby John McGranaghan
Jeffrey wants Saturn for his birthday, and he wants the moons tooall 47 of them. After all, they'll make great night-lights! But he's not selfish; he'll share the rings with some of his friends at school and with his teacher, Mrs. Cassini. Facts about Saturn are woven seamlessly throughout this funny story as Jeffrey explains just what he'll do with his present and how he'll take care of it. His dad better hurry with the order, though, because shipping might take a while. The “For Creative Minds” education section features “Solar System” and “Saturn Fun Facts.”
Meet the Author
John McGranaghan (Saturn for My Birthday) has always been fascinated by outer space but it was his youngest son, Kyle, who asked for the planet Saturn for his fourth birthday. That request became the inspiration for Saturn for My Birthday. John has also written stories and articles for Boys' Quest Magazine, Pockets Magazine, Columbia Magazine, and local newspapers. He is winner of the 2001 Pockets Fiction Contest. When John isn't writing, he enjoys sports and spending time with his wife and two boys. John currently works as a school counselor in the Philadelphia suburbs. This is his first picture book.
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Jeffrey smiled as he came into the kitchen where his father was at the espresso machine. The curly mopped pair were surrounded by animals, including a white cockatoo that had settled in on his Dad's shoulder. Birthday time was coming up and much to his father's relief, he didn't ask for another pet, but what he did want just about took the curl out of his Dad's hair. The animals scattered, milk flew up in the air and peas scattered across the table when Jeffrey said that he wanted "Saturn!" Yes, yes, yes! He wanted not only Saturn, but "all forty-seven" moons that surrounded the planet." That wasn't asking for much, and of course the planet would have to be ordered immediately to get there any time soon. Mrs. Cassini had told the class all about the planet and because it was "800 million miles" away it was going to take a while. Jeffrey had all kinds of plans for Saturn, a planet he knew all about. It was very cold at "about 200 degrees below zero," but he had plans to warm it up. He imagined he could put the planet in the tub and wash the rings, he decided Saturn could light up his room at night, he could put Titan, the "biggest moon" beside his bed . . . yup, he had big plans for Saturn. He imagined he could take it to school, but his Dad interrupted his thoughts, by saying, "Jeffrey, Saturn is not a toy. It's a planet." Jeffrey began to stomp his foot and pout. Would he be able to get Saturn or was he going to have to get something else he didn't want? This delightful tale is a wonderful way to gently absorb factual material on a planet without having to memorize facts. The beautiful, colorful supporting illustrations meshed perfectly with the text and were excellent visual aids to the story. For example, while Jeffrey was telling his Dad about the major moons, Titan, Pandora, Calypso, Janus, Tethys, and Mimas, the reader can figure out the largest to the smallest by putting on their thinking caps. This book is very vibrant and alive and shouts out at the reader just asking to be read time and time again. In the back of the book there is a section on "Solar System Fun Facts," "Saturn Fun Facts," a section discussing the planet's size, additional assorted facts, and a recipe for "Edible Rings." Additional teaching/learning resources for this book can be found on the Sylvan Dell Publishing website. Quill says: For a fun, factual, and fascinating learning experience about Saturn this is one book you can count on for an enjoyable reading experience!