Reviews for If animals built your house (J/Book)

Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Wise and Evans explore the many types of houses animals build. Wise creates the fictional Fin & Claw Village to introduce five diverse children (and readers) to animal homes. Wearing hard hats and carrying flashlights, the five crawl through tunnels made by mound termites underneath the tallest structure made by animals. Living in a honeybee colony would be sweet, but the bedrooms are awfully small and hot. Other species introduced include tree squirrels, red groupers, chimpanzees, grey foam-nest tree frogs, satin bowerbirds, polar bears, alligators, pack rats, and beavers. One quick sentence on each spread is followed by a paragraph in a smaller font that gives more information; these focus on keeping kids’ attention and are often humorous. Straight facts are presented at the back. A final question asks readers what sort of house they might make; a Literacy Connection section provides teachers with lesson ideas, including a STEAM activity to extend on that question. Backmatter sorts fact from fiction for readers, especially with regard to the illustrations: Homes depicted are child-sized, but their builders are proportionate to the kids, and the habitats are accurately portrayed on the individual spreads, if not in the endpaper map of the village. Small details delight, from the amusing mailboxes to the visual clues pointing to previous and future species. (This book was reviewed digitally with 9-by-22-inch double-page spreads viewed at 29% of actual size.) Readers will surely pay closer attention on nature walks. (Informational picture book. 4-8) Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

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