Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday 10.08.14

NF PB 2014

We know that a big part of the CCSS is to include more informational texts into ourstudents' reading.  I quickly discovered I had a "gap" in my reading diet - the genre of informational texts!  To help me fill the gap this year, I am going to participate in Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesdays!  This is a great link-up hosted by Kid Lit Frenzy.  Please visit this website to see other educator's link-ups.  My goal is to read at least one informational text each week and post information on the blog.  The more books and subjects I read, the more I can encourage (my #OLW for 2014) other teachers to use in their classroom! 

Creature Features: Twenty-Five Animals Explain Why They Look the Way They Do

This week is the book birthday for the new Steve Jenkins and Robin Page collaboration, Creature Features.  The duo always amazes me with their layouts and fascinating animal information.  This one is no exception!

Each page is a letter to the animal asking the animal a question about their feature.  Then there is a short response from the animal explaining the purpose of that particular feature.
"Dear mandrill:  Why is your nose so colorful?"
"My bright red and blue nose tells other mandrills that I'm a full-grown male monkey, so they'd better not mess with me.  My rear end is pretty colorful too, but I'd rather not talk about that."

With Jenkins' trademark torn and cut-paper collage illustrations, each page shows a close up to the animal's unique feature.  

This is another book that young children will pour over.  

Teachers will enjoy using this book in class, and going back over for several reads.  After just enjoying the book, it begs to go back and classify the different features and put the animals into groups.  Using the information in the back of the book which shows a map cutaway showing where each animal lives, students could discuss how the feature helps them adapt to their particular environment.  During math, using the same back pages (which show the animals in comparison to a human), students could estimate the size of each animal in comparison to an average male.  So many cross-curricular activities!  

Thank you Steve Jenkins and Robin Page for another fantastic book!


  1. This was definitely on my TBR NFPB list. Now, I'm even more excited to read it!

  2. I just picked this up yesterday. I can hardly wait to read it.

  3. It's always worth getting exciting for a new Steve Jenkins and Robin Page book! I haven't read it yet - looking forward to it!

  4. Jenkins is one of my favorite illustrators. I am such a sucker for collage and textures.

  5. I just bought this title and can't wait to share it with my students. I love everything and anything Jenkins!

  6. I have to fully explore more of Steve Jenkins' works. :) He seems so prolific.

  7. Oh I want this one. I need to order it.