Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday - celebrating space! 6.19.19

Wednesdays I join Alyson Beecher from kidlitfrenzy and other
#kidlit bloggers to share wonderful nonfiction picture books.
The intention of today's blog post is to give professionals that work in the
education field new nonfiction reading material and ideas to use 
with students to promote a love of reading nonfiction materials.

The next couple of days I'll be sharing some books that are out of this world!  Which means we're going to celebrate space.  Today I have some nonfiction picture books to share, tomorrow some chapter books for young readers!

Moon! Earth's Best Friend by Stacy McAnulty
Moon! Earth's Best Friend
written by Stacy McAnulty
illustrated by Stevie Lewis
Love this series so much.  If you haven't checked out Earth and Sun, then you are really missing out on some great reads!
Moon tells us about how she was created, some facts about what she is made of, what you would find on her, and basic information about how/when/how often she rotates around Earth and the phases that occur. 
Readers will love the humor and enjoy learning more about Moon!

Go for the Moon by Chris Gall
Go for the Moon: A Rocket, A Boy, and the First Moon Landing
by Chris Gall
The story is told as a narrative as a young space enthusiast gets ready to watch the spaceship Saturn V and the attached space vehicle Columbia bring astronauts to the moon for the very first time.  We simultaneously get to see our young narrator reenact the liftoff and trip to space while also understanding more about this process through the information given, the illustrations and corresponding captions.  
It is clear in the beginning that the story takes place in the past, but then I can see kids get confused as the story goes on that this is still a factual retelling of an event that has already occurred.  It's probably best to make sure it is clear to young readers that this is an event that has already happened.

Full Moon Lore by Ellen Wahi
Full Moon Lore
written by Ellen Wahi
illustrated by Ashley Stewart
In the NGSS first graders study patterns in space.  One pattern we know is the phases of the moon.  Every month there is a full moon (and as this book tells you, every 2.7 years one month has 2 full moons (the last one was March 31, 2018.... want to know when the next one will occur?  Oct. 31, 2020!!) and as stories have it, each full moon represents something in nature.  This book shares the name of each monthly full moon and the reasons for the name.

The Girl Who Named Pluto by Alice B McGinty
The Girl Who Named Pluto: The Story of Venetia Burney
written by Alice B. McGinty
illustrated by Elizabeth Haidle
Really enjoyed this picture book biography!  Again, about a young person who showed passion very on for what she ended up making her life's work - Venetia Burney excelled in academics, particularly in math and sciences.  She questioned everything and wondered about it all.  When she learned about the discovery of a new planet and the contest to name it, she quickly came up with a name that was ultimately chosen.  Venetia thought about the stories behind other planets that had origins with Roman mythology to come up with "Pluto".  What a fantastic coincidence that the founder's initials were PL!
Interesting author's note giving us some more details about Venetia's life and the way scientists have since honored her contribution to science and history.
I also appreciated in the author's note McGinty tells the reader that most of this was based on factual evidence of Venetia's life, but some parts she filled in.

Once Upon a Star by James Carter
Once Upon a Star: A poetic journey through space
written by James Carter
illustrated by Mar Hernández
Thanks to Kellee Moye for putting this one on my radar!  Pair this with Marion Dane Bauer's The Stuff of Stars to talk to young readers about the big bang theory and evolution.  While not full of detail, I enjoyed the poetic nonfiction writing.  The illustrations are unique as well - bright, bold colors contrast with the darkness of space.

And don't forget the book I reviewed last month - If You Had Your Birthday Party on the Moon by Joyce Lapin.  My colleague shared the book trailer with students at the end of the year.  I'll leave it here for you to watch!

And because it goes along with the theme, you have to check out this new fiction picture book:

Small World by Ishta Mercurio
Small World
written by Ishta Mercurio
illustrated by Jen Corace
This gorgeous picture book celebrates perspective and the world around us.  We first meet young Nanda when she is a baby and the world around her is her family and the comfort they bring her.  But as Nanda grows, we see the world around her grow as she continues to explore new places and ideas around her.  Definitely featuring a STEAM piece in this storyline, the reader sees Nanda build and grow new ideas, from attending what seems to be a math/science school and building a machine that gets moved in the air by a pulley and wheel system, to flying an airplane, to flying in a rocketship and landing on the moon?  another planet?  It's from that perspective that Nanda sees the Earth as part of the larger universe and while Earth seems big, it's this perspective that reminds us that Earth is just part of something even larger.
With illustrations that have geometric patterns ingrained in them, Corace's work gels so well with Mercurio's storyline.  A beautiful picture book to have in your library!
I am grateful to author Ishta Mercurio for sending me this copy!  This book publishes July 2nd, make sure to add it to your TBR lists!

Happy out-of-this-world reading!

1 comment:

  1. Excited to read Ishta's book! We'll be on an NCTE panel together this No ember 🥰‼