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“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.”
Summary: Each page has a picture of a baby animal, a 3 to 4 sentence paragraph of related animal facts, and an inspirational quote or poem. This picture book combines poetry, photography, and animal facts.
Type of Reading: playtime reading, read aloud book
Recommended Age: read together: 4 to 8; read yourself: 9 to 12
Interest Level: 5 to 9
Age of Child: Read with a 3-year-old child.
Young Reader Reaction: My son liked the pictures, but it took a couple of readings for him to "into it." I thought he would like it more. There were a lot of animals he had never seen before, so he could not relate to them. He absolutely loved the gorilla on the last page and decided he wants to ride on my back the way a baby gorilla does. We mainly looked at the pictures and did not exhaust the text. It is too much for a 3-year-old's attention span.
Adult Reader Reaction: This is not a book for toddlers, but for older readers. It is a very interesting book, but it has to be actively explored to get all the information out of it. It is better for avid readers and animal lovers.
Pros: This book is full of interesting animal facts. I love the positive tone of the selection of quotes.
Cons: This is easy to put down because the text is disjointed and scattered (e.g., animal facts vs. inspirational quotes).
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is a book only for avid readers (4th or 5th grade. It would be overwhelming for reluctant or remedial readers.
Educational Themes: Paired with the pictures, kids are introduced to non-standard animals. They also are introduced to the concept of hierarchy in the animal world (though not formally). The animals can also be divided into distinct species.
Literary Categories: Nonfiction - picture book, animals, life lessons