Backyard

Donald M. Silver, Author, Patricia J. Wynne, Illustrator W.H. Freeman & Company $14.95 (47p) ISBN 978-0-7167-6510-3
Filled with an assortment of the plants, animals and insects found in the Northeast quadrant of the United States, Silver's backyard is a happening place--``alive with creepers and crawlers, lifters and leapers, movers and mixers . . . builders, buriers, and recyclers.'' By advising naturalists to focus on a single square meter of their own yards, the book lends immediate confidence and helps readers to value their own observations, discoveries and conclusions. Silver teaches youngsters to use their senses, along with simple, inexpensive tools, to hunt for tunnels bored in bark, to spy out snow fleas, to measure the distance between bud scales to know how fast a plant grows and to analyze droppings. The book mingles standard field exercises (growing mold, making leaf rubbings, catching animal tracks) with a reach of knowledge extensive enough to allow readers to extract what they need. So much information is provided, in fact, that despite the author's emphasis on experimentation, this book remains more of a reference text than a guide to discovery. Still, the combination of humorous, scientifically grounded text with detailed, realistic drawings will pique the interest of armchair naturalists and active explorers alike. A companion volume, One Small Square: Seashore , also by Silver and Wynne, will be released simultaneously. Ages 7-12. (Aug. )
Reviewed on: 08/02/1993
Release date: 08/01/1993
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 48 pages - 978-0-07-057930-9
Prebound-Sewn - 47 pages - 978-0-613-07297-7
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